If you’re a working college student like myself, or have any other combination of responsibilities in your life, you know how difficult it is to get and stay inspired on the daily! I have been struggling with finding inspiration since I started college, and even more once I started working again. These are some of the ways I have found to help myself out, without too much time and effort. These simple tips should help you feel more inspired every day!
Carry a notebook with you everywhere
When I go to class, I always keep a small moleskin notebook in one of the pockets of my backpack in case I get a cool idea or a thought that I want to remember. Always be prepared for inspiration to strike! I am one of those people who always thinks I’ll remember something even if I don’t write it down, and without fail, I forget it every single time. So, I now make a point of never having an excuse not to write it down. If I happen to not have a notebook on hand, I’ll type it into a note on my phone, but I prefer handwriting things when possible.
Read before bed
Not everyone enjoys reading, but for me, reading fills my head with ideas and reel of images my brain has conjured up from a mere collection of words on a page. If you are at all inclined to read, I highly recommend forcing yourself to read before bed every night. Some nights, I don’t make it through more than one page, but I still managed to crack open that book and make some sort of attempt at progress. Especially if you like to write, reading is essential for inspiration.
Wake up 10 minutes earlier to write
I have definitely been slacking on this one, but when I did keep up with it, I loved it. It’s much harder now with my work schedule which often keeps me up till 4 am. However, on regular nights when I’ve gotten enough sleep, I love getting up just a few minutes earlier to write in my journal. I have never been able to commit to writing before bed, so I switched to the morning. I find it interesting to see what the first thing my mind comes up with in the morning will be. It doesn’t matter how much you are able to write, just that you write something. I often surprise myself and manage to write 3 or 4 pages when I didn’t know I had so much to say. Even if you’re only writing half a page or a page, it counts! It’s a great way to get your brain started for the day.
Keep inspirational images
This is a biggie for me! To some, my system may seem cluttered, but it’s incredibly inspirational to me. I am always cutting out images I like from ads and editorials in magazines and storing them away. I have a wall in my bedroom where I tape them all up so I can see them at all times. Not all of them make the wall, and those I keep in a folder to use in an art journal or simply to look through for inspiration. Keeping mine in a slightly messy, artistic format helps with the inspiration I draw from the images. However, you can find an organized way to keep images you like to find inspiration as well.
Cut down social media time
This is the hardest thing in the world! Even though I know I want to cut down, I always find myself scrolling through social media. My solution to this is to start setting a timer every time I open a social media app. This way, I can never stay there for too long. It can also help to designate certain times of day to check social media. If it’s not the designated time, don’t you dare open that app!! Social media can be a huge source of inspiration sometimes, but it can also inhibit action. I love using pinterest, tumblr, and even instagram to find inspirational images, but I get too sucked in. It’s all about learning where to draw the line. Moderation is key!