ZOELAB 365 Follow-Up

Zoë Edmonds completed her yearlong ZOELAB 365 project on August 31, 2013...

What did I learn? I learned that even though I am a mother, and live off the grid in the desert, and can be disorganized, I really am able to discipline myself, and that creativity is a constant flow always available that just needs to be tapped into. I have learned how to let go of perfectionism (for the sake of getting that post out there according to my committment) but at the same time... I learned that regular creative work on something that I care deeply about leads to a happier life. (The original impetus of the project was that it was a Happiness Project, inspired by Gretchen Rubin's book of the same name.) Having a daily discipline reconnected me to the old fashioned value of hard work, which when applied with compassion (instead of judgment and punishment) is very satisfying. I developed some great techniques that allow for optimum creative flow. And, rather than making myself focus all my energies in one particular art form, I am learning how to focus, instead, on how to connect my ideas, while using a variety of art forms to develop them--essays, free writing, songwriting, guitar, photography, video, poetry, acting, drawing. I also developed a system of organization to allow for greater creative productivity. I will be teaching this system, as well as the creative techniques I have been developing in my creativity classes and with my creativity coaching clients with Art For Life here in Baja.

How did my life change? Having grown up in Brooklyn, and being a city person my whole life, my life already had changed quite a bit when I moved to the desert, in Baja, Mexico. Doing this project allowed me express and explore exactly what this life means to me that I am creating here, and why I made this choice in the first place. I must say the changes in my life were not all positive--it was hard on some of my relationships and on my sleep-level--to be that dedicated to my blog every night after a full day of house work/parenting/work and commitments. But it also increased my sense of satisfaction and was well-worth the effort. My life feels more full--I am reading more, thinking more, feeling more inspired, more engaged, and am living my goal--which is to live life as art. A bonus: I cured (through substitution) my addiction to watching videos after my kid goes to bed.

What's next?
I have decided that I don't want to continue doing a daily blog as the pressure to publish daily and the time commitment was quite intense, and I want to explore creativity away from my computer. For my next project, I have committed to playing music and writing every day (and doing blog posts every once in a while), but I will be posting a video every week, hence my new project, which starts in October 2013, will be called ZOELAB 52: Videos & Assignments. My goals for this project are to have more involvement from friends or other creators through collaborations, and to return to my love of performance. One of my goals for ZOELAB 365 was that it would lead to a book idea (or a few) and/or publication. I did come up with a book that I have started writing about creative motherhood, which is very exciting.

Read Zoë's original 365 interview HERE.

See all of Zoë's projects HERE.

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