Do you know what it means to be fearlessly creative? I love how Ruth Soukup challenged us to be just that while continuing to grow and learn new things though her challenges in both day 16 and day 17 in the Living Well & Spending Zero challenge.
Fearlessly creative. So good, yet so hard, especially when it comes to those of us who are perfectionists.
Ruth is right on, however, because in order to create and learn new things, there is an element of fearless that we must embrace. For me this means a fearless acceptance that I might fail, or that I might at least not complete a project as well as I would like.
In an effort to live frugally, I have had to get a bit more fearless when it comes to trying new things. I have had to try my hand at things that even five years ago, I never would have been brave enough to try.
The great thing about living in the world of today, is that we have the Internet. We really have the ability to learn nearly anything we want to right at our fingertips. With access to things like YouTube and Pinterest, we can search for a myriad of things.
It took me awhile, but I really am to the point now where I will go there first when I encounter a problem that needs to be fixed or something that I can’t otherwise figure out. I have searched there for everything from how to fix the way things appear on my computer screen when my baby managed to push something that turned everything sideways to how to assemble my son’s new toy that I just couldn’t seem to follow in the instructions.
In fact, just this week my husband found a video that showed him how to put the attachment into our steam cleaner since somehow the manual has gone MIA.
I have found videos that walked me through how to use my sewing machine, how to complete my sewing project when it went horribly off track, and how to create beautiful puffs using tissue paper that now look beautiful hanging from my daughter’s ceiling.
I have certainly had to be willing to fail, however, and I have discovered that the projects I take on seem to go better when I follow a series of a few basic steps. Maybe these can help you, too, if you are a perfectionist as I am or someone who is kind of missing the creative/crafty gene. No worries, I’m missing that gene, too.
Research the project thoroughly ahead of time
I first want to make sure that it is something I can actually complete. I have to watch the video or tutorial all the way through to make sure that I am not beyond my skill level three steps in to an eight step process. Watching it through from start to finish, usually more than once, has proven to be very beneficial to me. As I work I still consult the instructions as I go, but I still know where the entire project is headed.
I find a time to work when I will have quiet and be free from distractions
Ideally this would be alone time, but at best it needs to be after all the kids have gone to bed when I have time to myself. Trying to complete a project while constantly being bombarded with interruptions only frustrates me, therefore making something that may be just a bit beyond my comfort zone just a bit further from my natural reach.
I have come to accept that in many projects, I will have to try it more than once to get it close to right
Rare is the time that things that I am not familiar with go off without a hitch. Having enough supplies on hand to accommodate mess-ups is essential.
It is true that others don’t usually notice the mess-ups nearly as much as I do
Therefore, through this realization, I can let go of some more of my natural perfectionistic tendencies. This is actually a good thing, but it is a perspective that is so helpful for me to keep in mind before I even get started.
As I try to get through a project, I have to know when to walk away, and when to throw in the towel
If I’ve tried something a few times and have honestly given it my best try, if it’s not gone well, it just might not be worth it anymore.
Taking full advantage of the things we can learn, create, and change about our surroundings is something we can to do be frugal while also having a little bit of fun. If you haven’t played around with trying your hand at a repair or a DIY project, now is the perfect time to try it out – as long as you aren’t spending any money on the spending freeze, that is!