4 min read

Learning Habit Building with Pixel Art, Part Two: Showing Up

Hello there! I'm Brennan Davis, the creator of CreaDev Labs, a place of learning and experimentation on productivity, creativity, and personal knowledge management. If you're new around here, be sure to check out my archive of previous newsletter editions. If you enjoy this newsletter, please consider sharing with a friend!

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When building a habit, it's actually not the quality that matters at first; it's about consistently showing up each and every day.

James Clear in his book Atomic Habits talks about how you need to make your habits as easy to perform as possible when you're first starting out so you're much more likely to actually do it. He suggests whittling your habit down to something that can be done in 2 minutes or less (The Two Minute Rule). By making it small and simple enough to do in 2 minutes, you make performing the habit less daunting. The hardest part of any task is getting started, so by making the first thing you have to do super easy, it helps you get started and gain some momentum to keep going.

For example, the habit I've been building to help me stick with the 30 Day Pixel Art Challenge I talked about in my previous newsletter is nothing more than simply opening up my Pixel Art app, Pixaki.

That's it. That's the whole habit.

Opening up the app tells my mind it's time to work on Pixel Art, and I'm happy to say it's helped me to be much more consistent with working on Pixel Art so far.

Another suggestion Clear makes is to tie your habit to a place and a time. The place and time for me to open up Pixaki is on my couch after the kids go to bed. These simple cues combined have helped me get into the flow of working on Pixel Art, even when I look at the day's prompt and have no idea how I'm going to do it. But having a way to help me get started and gain momentum has helped tremendously.

Not every piece I've done so far in the challenge has been my favorite, but every piece has taught me something about doing Pixel Art. Showing up each day and working on my skills has brought me closer to my desired identity of being a creative person who can tangibly create things out of the ideas in their head.

Take some time to think about the kind of person you want to become, then come up with a two minute habit that will help you move towards that goal. Doing so will help you make small bits of progress towards your goals, which is far better than making no progress at all.

What two minute habit will you be trying out? Please share with me by sending an email to brennan@creadevlabs.com, or if you're viewing this on the website please share in the comments section below.


Things I'm working on to improve my productivity and personal knowledge management practices

Along with my daily pixel art challenge, I'm also doing a daily doodle challenge of sorts. I received a 2023 desk calendar that has a doodle prompt for every day of the year, so I have something new to practice drawing each day. Not every doodle is the best, but it gives me the opportunity to show up and practice drawing on a consistent basis.

A few of my favorite doodles I've done so far this year.

What I'm Reading / Watching / Listening to:

Resources and ideas from others to explore

Article: Back to the Basics
This article is from bulletjournal.com, so it's referring to returning to the basics of Bullet Journaling if you find you've lost your way in your Bullet Journal practice. I think this applies to many areas in life, though, not just Bullet Journaling. If something you're doing feels like it no longer serves it's original purpose, it can be helpful to return to basics and start fresh. I've done this myself several times with my Bullet Journal, my note taking system, my productivity system, and my Pixel Art learning, just to name a few. And the beginning of a new year is as good a time as any to wipe the slate clean and start fresh.

Video: How to get THE MOST from your iPad in 2023
I've watched several of these types of videos, and I think I've just about got all the tips and tricks for getting the most out of an iPad by now. Perhaps what I should do now is share how I'm actually using my iPad for all of my creative work.

Questions or comments?

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