Sunday, March 01, 2015

Finding Time

We must use time creatively.” – Martin Luther King, Jr.

Whenever I meet creative people it seems they are always short on two things that are roadblocks to their creativity: money and time.

I’ve already addressed the money issue here. But time is equally as scarce for us as we struggle to get out the art we want to make. Or is it?

In his very interesting book, Free, Chris Anderson argues that we already have the time, we just spend it doing the wrong things.

“And where do people find the time? By not doing something else — abandoning things that don't return the same social and emotional rewards. Imagine if we could harness just a fraction of the human potential lost watching TV. (Actually, there's no need to imagine that: Rating trends suggest that TV watching has already peaked, and we're increasingly choosing the screens that allow us to both produce and consume.)” – Chris Anderson, Free

Now don’t get me wrong. I love me some TV. I watch more TV than many of you combined. But I DVR everything. Even sports so I can speed through later. I never watch commercials. And if I could watch all my shows on demand, I’d drop cable in a minute.

But it’s not about the TV, or PS3, or anything else we decide to waste time doing instead of painting, writing, playing, or dancing. We make the decision to chill doing those things, and it’s not always a bad thing to chill. Sometimes we need to give our creative minds some rest.

That time though may be our only time in the day to do our creative work, especially if you have a day gig or other full-time work raising kids or serving at church. We can find the time though, we just have to look for it and sometimes schedule it.

“Time is what we want most, but what we use worst.” – William Penn

There are hours, in every day, in every weekend, that we can claim or reclaim to focus on study, creating, cataloging, marketing, or whatever you need to be doing. Perhaps you don’t know where those hours will come from, but you might if you look.

Morning Person/Night Person

If you are one of these, you know the time you love. It’s quiet. Not many people in the house are up. You can get stuff done. This is a time to investigate.

People ask me how I get so much done and work on so many things. I tell them there’s a magic time between 11pm and 3am where I’ve carved out some time to work (or not).

Maybe there’s a time in your work day where it’s quiet for a few minutes and you can squirrel away to create. I remember days before work after dropping my kids off for school where I’d write in the quiet (and kind of holy) sanctuary at the church where they went to school.

Or maybe you take lunch, go home, and practice if the house is quiet. If everyone is gone during the day, you've got time to create!

Perhaps it's nap time for the kids. Take that baby monitor to the studio and get to work.

There’s lots of possibilities here, you just have to look – that is, if you are serious about this. Then again, those of us who are serious really have no other choice.

We just find the time.

“Time = Life, Therefore, waste your time and waste of your life, or master your time and master your life.” – Alan Lakein

Have a great week!

Eric Copeland is typing this at 1:02 AM. That’s where his creative time is. Where’s yours? If you need help contact us here. If you want to know more about what his company does, check out


  1. Hi Eric, my name is Carol Moore and I live in North Carolina right now. God has called my family to Tennessee for ministry and music ministry. I sing and write songs and I am planning coming to one of your workshops real soon. God has given me some truly amazing songs and I have been sitting on them long enough. Hope to see you all real soon. God bless!!!

  2. Anonymous8:57 AM

    Good article Eric.... I appreciate your wisdom..... again! Thanks!

  3. Good luck on your move Carol. We'd love to have you come to one of our workshops!


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Eric Copeland is an author, producer, keyboardist, songwriter, and president of Creative Soul Companies. What is Creative Soul? Our main goals are to inform, encourage, and assist Christian creative folks in ministry, no matter where they are in their journey. Thanks for reading! Find out more about us at