A process of creative device detachment.
How many times have you checked Instagram today? Facebook? Twitter? Snapchat? For me, I think it averages somewhere in the area of 20+ daily. Doesn’t sound like much but considering I probably spent anywhere from 5-10 minutes scrolling, liking and commenting each time, that adds up to anywhere between 100-200 minutes of screen time without even really achieving anything useful or actually communicating with anyone in a meaningful way. And that, personally for me at least, is not good.
Not to say that screen time has to always be productive, but it seems that scrolling through, liking and sharing of content has become our go-to ‘time out’ method. We spend so much time on our devices at work so it’s easy to stay in the world contained within your screen – especially as we can access so much of the world from our devices. But what effect is this having on us? What is it doing to our creative minds?
I touched on this in my previous post here, so it seemed quite fortuitous when a fellow blogger and Instagram pal, Rani (@youtotallygotthis) mentioned she used a Bullet Journal, after I posted on Instagram about how I still love to write things down on paper. (even though there are a billion apps that can take notes for you much faster and probably do a zillion things that may or may not help you be organised/get things done/take over the world.)
I Googled ‘bullet journal’ and WOAH! It was pretty much love at first sight – after I got my head around the concept. Basically, it’s simply a plain notebook that you make into your own version of a diary/journal/organiser/planner. There are so many different tutorials, methods and ideas based on the original format – I highly recommend checking it out, especially if you are someone who find standard planners and yearly diaries a little restrictive.
The beauty of the bullet journal is that it is completely ANALOG. The tactile nature of getting off your computer/tablet/phone and putting pen to paper cannot and never will be replaced. It’s a fabulously creative way to plan and organise your day/week/month/year because you can tailor it to your own needs. Feel the need to do a quick sketch? Want to write about that thing that happened today? Feel like making a mood board? Put all of it in your journal. For those who have studied art or an art-related subject/degree/diploma this will be a familiar practice. Visual Diaries are an obligatory part of most creative courses – documenting your creative processes, findings and discoveries is imperative to passing your subjects! And so for me, it has reminded me how fun it can be to pour my ideas onto a real page (with a random flourish or squiggle or maybe a page dedicated to drawing a nonsensical pattern because I feel like it!) and how cathartic it can be to get out of your head – might just be me, but I think thoughts written down are often just as effective as thoughts spoken out loud.
So, my Bullet Journal/Visual Diary will be my new constant companion, coming with me everywhere I go. Because inspiration can strike at anytime! (as can forgotten appointments and grocery items!!)
I would love to know if you keep a similar journal – or maybe you use a totally different method to organise and remind yourself of things? How do you unplug yourself from your devices? And how do you feel when you do?
Until next time,