I received this email from a lovely reader and knew it was time to bring back a mailbox feature. I know there are many out there who can identify with Nancy. Here’s what she had to say:
I’m one of the many who have lost their mojo to scrap. I’ve been reading your past articles on this topic to help me. I am highly organized with my supplies, photo storage, and have set up a great scrap room. Love my label maker!
Over the years, I probably have spent more time organizing my stuff. I know in the long run that makes scrapping a whole lot easier but I haven’t been very page productive in the past two years. I have noticed one thing – I get back on a beam and then life distracts me and can’t remember where I left off with what I was working on.
I’ve inherited my family’s photos as well as have photos of my own family in boxes [plus] tons I have saved on my computer. That’s where I feel overwhelmed! I am 50 (empty nester) and don’t want to lose sight of this goal I see for myself, of making meaningful albums to pass on. I’m trying to pinpoint where I am getting stuck; I think it’s time management and rediscovering the fun of scrapbooking again. I do realize I don’t have to scrap every photo!
I appreciate you taking the time to read my email and any feedback you can offer.
Nancy from Oregon
Though I often discuss how clutter and disorganization can zap your mojo and get in the way of scrapbooking (in other words, stuck in your stuff), being on the opposite end of the spectrum can similarly leave you on empty. Being neatly labeled with ducks in a row doesn’t necessarily equate to productivity. At the core, the ability to get things done is in your head.
When I see someone like Nancy with natural organization ability, my first recommendation is to leverage that even more. Make a step-wise list for each project, so you know where you are and what is next. Create kits of select supplies and specific photos so can you work without distraction. These logistical tweaks can give a more “type A” personality something to focus on, while still moving forward.
I also would ask Nancy (and others like her) whether all the items that are tucked neatly away are still usable. Are there outdated and unloved products you won’t ever use again? Are there supplies, such as markers and adhesive, that are dried out or otherwise unusable? It is important to remember that that organization doesn’t always mean you don’t have clutter that should be removed.
Finally, for someone who has been scrapbooking for a while, when was the last time you changed it up? Have you tried new products like mists? Have you tried creating things on your computer? Have you made a mini book or taken a class or… you get my drift. If you look at the most prolific artists and writers, you’ll find they all get out of their comfort zone and seek new experiences to stay fresh.
Most of all, I live by the idea of picking just one thing to do and doing it until done. I try hard to not start something else until my first task is complete and to make sure my tasks are listed as doable action steps.
Do you have any additional suggestions for Nancy? Please share your thoughts in the comments.
Do you need some help? Email me (firstname.lastname@example.org) your memory keeping questions for future Reader Mail posts.