A funny thing has been happening with me and project life. I had it all figured out and started in on it. And – um – well, I learned I didn’t have it all figured out. But that’s a good thing – it’s just yet more proof to me that I better allow things to follow their own course. Years ago I would have quit it all together and let a partially started project sit there on the shelf, reminding me that it didn’t work. I’d focus on it not fitting my ideas rather than how to shift and change the system to make it work. Parts of it were working so very well that I want to hang onto that. I’ve just slowly reshaped it to the form it seems to want to take, and things are chunking along nicely now.
1. Some (or maybe many) weeks will only have one side of a page protector. That’s ok. Right now, that’s all I’m aiming for. I found trying to do two ‘layouts’ – facing sides of page protectors – just stressed me out. Stress needed to go. I’m a fast digital scrapper, and that wouldn’t phase me, but I’m insanely slow when it comes to getting this stuff done in a physical form – even if I do a lot of it digitally. I’ve debated doing a digital version, but I love the physical outcome and I figure it’s something I’ll get better at over time. Definitely a step or fifty outside my comfort zone, but that’s the only way to expand a comfort zone.
2. I’m not going to share every page every week here on the blog. In all honesty, I find I put things in there that I don’t want to share with the world. I want to share parts of it, but the thought of posting it all here stressed me out. I pulled in and was even hesitant to share any of it for awhile. But life isn’t all or nothing/black and white – so I’ll be sharing parts I feel comfortable with – many of these will be the small digital layouts or journaling. Making this decision removes this stress. Heck, I don’t even do Project Life in chronological order all the time – that means week 5 still has a couple of slots waiting to be filled – a couple of sticky notes are a reminder of ideas for them.
3. And speaking of fillers… I need some fillers, but really don’t like just inserting some pretty paper unless it’s a place holder until I get time later on to come back to it. What I love is the idea I got from Cathy Zielske’s ME: The Abridged Version class. Take a word that describes some aspect of your life and write a short paragraph or two on it and take a photo to illustrate it. I’ve even dug out my old tag book from the class and am adding to it, or just writing paragraphs whenever I’m inspired – I have an InDesign file I keep for these so everything’s all set to just write. Ali Edwards tweeted the other day about some 4×6 monogram journaling cards that would work for this as well.
4. Project Life isn’t supposed to be something to add stress to life, but rather should be an act of celebrating life. Record the ordinary and the extra-ordinary and the extraordinary. There are no rules, and what’s working for me isn’t going to work for everyone, and it may not even work for me next week or next month. That’s OK. Letting it shift and change is part of the beauty of it. I made changes based on a variety of blog posts and comments I’ve read, so maybe what I’m doing will somehow resonate and springboard you into your own rhythm. Ditch the stress – let’s celebrate the lives we lead!