Have you ever lost your Mojo?
I know I have.
I’ve lost it for short periods of time in the past, but around 18 months ago it went walkabout! Big time! for more than 9 months.
I hear some of you asking “what on earth is a Mojo?”
Good question. From a crafting perspective it means we’ve lost our innate creativity, that flow of ideas, and that feeling when everything just comes together. Sometimes it means just not doing any crafting. It’s a little like writer’s block, but for crafters.
If you would like one of the many dictionary definitions: “if are feeling depleted, overwhelmed, stressed out, frumpy, tired, bored or lethargic”.
Hmmmmmm. Anyway…… having gone through an excrutiatingly long period of being Mojo-less, I thought I would share the things that worked for me.
I’m sure there are more than 11, I just like that number. I’m also sure that it’s different for everyone but hopefully some of these might help you out.
Yes, I know, it seems to be the answer to everything these days. But it does work.
Write down what you are feeling and why, and be really honest with yourself. Make it specifically about creativity, what being creative means to you, what creativity does for you, just write anything that comes into your head and let it flow out of you onto the page.
There really is a type of magic that goes with the process of writing our thoughts and feelings, and it helps to clarify what is working and what isn’t.
Gaston Bachelard said, “How can one not dream while writing? It is the pen which dreams. The blank page gives the right to dream.”
So dream a little, write as much as you can to clear the blocks.
2. What IS working?
Following on from the previous point, write down all the things that ARE going well, that are making you feel good, and give yourself a pat on the back for those things.
It’s so easy to fall into a pattern of believing that everything is going pear shaped just because you’ve lost your crafting mojo, but it’s usually not the case.
Find some positives in your life and be grateful for those, focus on those positives and tap into the feeling it gives you when you are thinking about them.
3. Make something!
Anything. No matter how simple, just create.
Make a very simple card.
Or a gift tag.
Buy a cheap notebook and cover it with pretty paper (then use it for journalling).
Anything to give you a sense of having done something creative, and made a start.
Here is my cheap notebook covered in some of the gorgeous Masterfully Made Designer Series Paper. So pretty!!
I don’t think it’s finished yet though, it may get a little more decoration on the front yet.
4. Make a Card, Send a Card.
Ok, that may seem obvious but so many of us seem to have a large stash of cards, because we make way more than we send.
But what are they doing sitting in your craft room?
There are a number of Random Act of Kindness (RAK) groups on the internet, as well as Birthday Card groups where people send other’s cards for their Birthday.
This was one of the things that really started to turn my Mojo-less state around – I wanted to use my creativity to give other people joy and happiness, and to inspire others. And having a stash of cards sitting in a cupboard wasn’t achieving that, and it got to a point where I was questioning why I was making cards. So I started sending them out. And I still do.
You could also put a card in a neighbours letterbox, or walk around your neighbourhood and put an anonymous card into random letterboxes.
Have fun with it. And get those cards out to people who will appreciate them.
Leave me a comment or send me an email if you would like to know about some of the RAK and Birthday Card groups that I am part of. They are global, so it doesn’t matter where you live.
5. Go out for a Walk.
Another of those things that seems to fix anything and everything, however in this case, while you are walking, look for creative inspiration, such as a colour combination, a layout, a pretty flower in a colour of one of your inks, a pattern…. just look at what is around you.
There are so many things in our world that can inspire us, we just need to see them, and be more aware.
Where I live, there is a person who owns a car in the extact shade of the new In Color, Boho Blue. It makes me smile whenever I see that Boho Blue car (I really do think it should belong to me!).
6. Use a Different Colour
I know I tend to go to my favourite colours when I am creating but it’s great to try out something different, pull out a colour that you hardly ever use and create something with it using that colour as a base.
It can be enough to get the creative juices flowing.
Or go back to Point 5 – Go for a Walk – and look at things with an eye to work out what colour ink they correspond with.
As an example, I was awake early this morning and watched the sky turn from inky black night sky to daylight. I watched all the beautiful colours come across the sky, and as the sun came up the sky had some Pool Party near the horizon, then Petal Pink, and Flirty Flamingo, Smokey Slate, Moody Mauve and Boho Blue.
Those are not colours I would have grouped together, but nature did.
7. Tidy Up your Craft Space.
Uh oh, yes I said it. Tidy it all up, put everything away so that you have a clean space to work from and know where everything is.
AND, keep it neat and tidy. Putting everything away at the end of the day (crafting session) means you can start the next session with a clean slate.
8. SELL Your retired and unused stamp sets and other craft items.
Yes it can be painful. If it is something that has special significance to you, or that you know you will use then definitely keep it.
But sell anything that you don’t think you will use.
Not only does it give you some extra cash to buy some new and exciting products (or maybe pay the electricity bill so that you can still turn the lights on to see, and therefore still craft!) but it also frees up space and allows energy and creativity to flow more easily.
9. STOP SCROLLING!
Sorry to yell, and sorry to tell you this but scrolling really doesn’t help our creativity.
Our minds get bombarded with so much information in one go, that we are often overwhelmed by all the ideas, ads, information all coming in too quickly for our brains to receive and really process what we are seeing.
Even better, take a day or two away from all devices completely, including your TV and let your brain rest and recover it’s equilibrium. And it’s creativity.
10. Try out a new Technique or Learn something New.
That is kind of the opposite to Point 9 since you need to find a new technique if you are going to try it out, but I think you get where I am coming from.
Trying out something new is refreshing and helps to refine the steps we are taking to create whatever it is we are creating.
It could be a new skill that has nothing to do with crafting, but I found the process of learning a new stamping technique, or a new fancy fold, a great way to get back into crafting when things weren’t quite happening for me.
This time I’m not yelling. CASE stands for “Copy and Share Everything” (not what I thought when I first started in papercrafting which was “Copy and Steal everything” Ooops).
To CASE something can mean to copy it exactly as the other person has made it. But often we don’t have the same craft products that they have used so it can be a great exercise to copy a card or a scrapbook layout using the same layout or diagram, but perhaps changing the colours, or a different feature image, or some different embellishments, or perhaps make all of those things different so that you end up with a completely different card to the one you were CASEing.
It’s really important to remember though, to make sure that you always give credit to the creator of the original.
– CASE the Catalogue. If you have a stamp set but don’t have any ideas for using it, start by CASEing a card using that stamp set from the catalogue.
Pinterest will also give you a huge number of options if you search by stamp set name, as will Split Coast Stampers.
– Copy a card you have made in the past that you liked but change one thing. Or maybe two.
Oh and I have thought of Point number 12 but I don’t want to change the title so I will just add it here…..
There are many card and scrapbook challenges online, colour challenges, sketch challenges, and they can be great fun to play along with and a wonderful way to get the creative ideas flowing.
So now you know the journey I have been on with my own creativity over the past 18 months. And it has brought me to a place now where I am ready to move forward. I’m not willing to play small any more. I’m here to share my creativity and inspire you to be creative and express whatever it is you want to express.
And I hope my tips may just help someone who is struggling to find that all important Mojo.
If you need a hand up, please reach out to me.
PS Oh, I forgot one…. Go Shopping for Craft Supplies! Here’s the link.
And if you prefer to use a QR Code with your device, here it is…