How do you find the right balance between having a corporate career and pursuing your own creative interests? Here’s one practical tip you can start implementing today.

First and foremost, don’t let your creative outlet become something that “you’ll get to one day when you have more time”.

That time will never come. And you’ll regret it later.

The key is to break down your creative passion into smaller elements which seem less daunting.

Build a creative routine into your day, even if it’s just for 5 or 10 minutes – whatever is realistic for you to commit to consistently.

Consistency is key here. That’s how creative expression, like any other behaviour, turns into a habit. By performing it every day.

The next question, then, is when you will perform this habit.

From my experience, the best time is not after, but before you start working on your daytime job. Your mind will be clearer, unencumbered by the work-related challenges that will surface during the day. And because your willpower is generally at its highest point in the morning, you’ll be more likely to follow through on your creative commitment.

Personally, I love learning about photo editing to keep improving my skills. But when I pushed my passion to the fringes of my schedule – weekends or evening hours – it was impossible to achieve any level of consistency. I was often too tired.

Now I watch editing tutorials every morning after breakfast for 10 minutes. I then spend 10 minutes editing or re-editing one of my photos to put into practice what I’ve learnt (such as the one below, which I enjoyed fine-tuning to bring out the colors a bit more). And I hardly ever miss a day – because I can always spare 20 minutes, no matter how hectic life gets.

Our creative inclinations have a way of growing into something big and intimidating in our minds.

Make them small instead.

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