This week I had sort of a mini revelation I would like to share: it seems that my most productive creative time is the afternoon. Seems simple, I know. But I feel like I have been trying to find this answer for years. In the past, I have set aside time to compose at pretty much every time of day, and most of the time I am fairly productive, but I have never been able to identify a particular time of day that works best for me. Some musicians prefer composing or practicing late at night, or first thing in the morning. I have had some success at both of these times, but I would say only limited success. I can't count on being productive at those times, and here is why: Early Morning: I'm still waking up, digesting some food, thinking about all the stuff I need to get done that day. Even though people say your mind is generally pretty clear at the beginning of the day, I don't always feel that way. I need to sit down and get some tasks off my plate right away.
Evening: I'm tired - we have been through the entire day and whatever it holds. I don't like to stay up too late, so my mind knows I don't have a long stretch of time to burrow into creativity. Sometimes I can be successful with a short block of creative time, even 30 minutes, but more often I need a large chunk of time that I know I can dedicate to composing. I may be productive in the first hour, but I don't feel really satisfied (in the groove) until a little more time has passed. At night, my brain seems to be better and doing non-creative work.
Afternoon: Jackpot! I have had plenty of time to wake up, do email and knock off some generally non-creative tasks, and my energy level is pretty high. I can plan out a large block of time, and I'm not tired like I will be at the end of the day.
I'm not sure why it took me so long to figure this out! But I'm excited to see how this continues to play out. I wonder if this will change or if I have really found my ultimate creative time period? We shall see.