Creative Sandbox Community - a lab for women's leadership through creative expression

Have you ever heard that you’re not fun to be around anymore?

Do you find yourself snapping at your kids or your partner?

Dreading going to work in the morning, procrastinating when you’re there.

You have an inbox that’s up to 1,001 emails.

You’re eating out and the scale is telling you that it’s not working.

You’re too tired to cook or exercise, because you’re not sleeping well.

You know that life shouldn’t be this way and feel this hard. But you feel stuck, and despite all your best intentions, night after night you find yourself watching TV, scrolling through Facebook, and wasting time until it’s time to go to bed and do it all over again tomorrow.

When did your life go off the rails?

What if I were to tell you that you don’t need to spend a lot of time, a lot of money, or make wholesale changes to your life, for things to be different?

The truth is, when you play in a Creative Sandbox, it doesn’t have to take a lot of time. Just a little bit is enough to make you look forward to your day, be more patient and kind to the people most important to you, and feel more like yourself again.

I'm Melissa Dinwiddie, and I invite you to enter the Creative Sandbox Community

Melissa Dinwiddie, founder of the Creative Sandbox Community, author of The Creative Sandbox Way™We are a community of open-hearted women, recovering our creativity together in the spirit of play.

We know that living our lives in shades of grey is not the only way to live. Making time and space — even just a little bit — for creative play turns up the saturation on our lives.

The Creative Sandbox Community exists to help women get creating, because when you give your creative spirit free rein (like she had when you were four!), it allows the True You, the Authentic You to come out.

It allows you to step into the biggest possible vision for yourself and for your life.

Why is giving your creative spirit free rein so powerful?

Because making space in your life for creative expression requires risk-taking.

Think about it: every time you write, paint, make music, sew, bead, or however you like to create, you have to:

  • Carve out the time (i.e., time-management and prioritizing!)
  • Set limits (which means learning to say “no” to anyone/anything impinging on that time)
  • Lean into fear and uncertainty (after all, if it’s not uncertain, then it’s been done before, which means it’s not truly creative!)
  • Tame your self-doubts (if the gremlins win, nothing gets done at all!)
  • Overcome all the temptations and distractions tugging at you (willpower is your friend here!)
  • Get back up when you stumble (which you will, so self-compassion is key!)

In other words, my dear, despite what you may have been told, doing the fun creative stuff you long to do isn’t frivolous self-indulgence.

Gimme a break — those are some badass leadership skills right there!

And the beautiful thing is that every time you do your creative thing you are strengthening those leadership muscles!

Not to mention modeling to others that creative expression is important, not frivolous.

Which is in itself important, because of course you and I both know that the world hasn’t caught on yet. If I were a gambler, I’d lay even odds that there are people in your life who don’t quite “get” your need to do creative stuff.

Friends, family, co-workers… Not everyone understands your hunger to create. They do think it’s frivolous. They look at people like us like we’re kinda weird. (And goodness knows if you don’t make money from it, Capitalist society sure isn’t gonna take you seriously!)

But you don’t have to make money from your creative thing for it to be really, really important.

Your creativity is important. Which is why we need to gather people like us together. Other women who “get” us, and can help keep us going, when the world feels cruel and unfeeling.

The Creative Sandbox Community - a lab for women's leadership through creative expressionOther women who can inspire us:

  • To think about something in a new way
  • To try a new creative technique (drawing, painting, writing, music…)
  • To apply for that job
  • To ask for that promotion
  • To step out onstage to speak
  • To finally clutterbust that Closet of Doom

That is the power of the Creative Sandbox Community. These kinds of changes, and more, are happening in the Sandbox every day, and we’d love for you to join us!

  • Dr. Angi Orobko
    I'm gaining so much just sharing with such wonderful women, and I can't imagine not being in this group!
    Dr. Angi Orobko

Not Sure You Have the Time, Space, Or Mental Energy to Foster Your Creativity?

Well, I can't give you an extra hour every day, but I can help you get rid of all the JUNK that's cluttering up your life, your space, and — let's be honest — your creative spirit. That's why you get a free spot in my Great ClutterBust when you join the Creative Sandbox Community.

Maybe this looks familiar...

Before the Great ClutterBust
Drawers in my kitchen & bathroom, and my studio bathroom shower, BEFORE the Great ClutterBust. (Embarrassing, but true!)

Clutter isn't just a minor annoyance — it sucks your energy and blocks your creative flow.

Wouldn't it be wonderful to be able to invite people over into your space without embarrassment? Wouldn't you love to proudly share great pictures on social media (the kind that other people would admire and add to their Pinterest pages)? 

Here's the thing: your clutter is not there because it serves you, or because you like it. Your clutter is there simply because you've never had the right kind of support to help you get rid of it.

This is What You Can Accomplish with the Right Support:

AFTER the Great ClutterBust
What those same spaces looked like AFTER the Great ClutterBust! That was my PHYSICAL space. Now imagine the shift in my MENTAL space. 

Yes, You Can Do This!

Melissa Dinwiddie - Hooray!!!

Help Is at Hand When You Join the
Creative Sandbox Community for Women,
Because We Kick Off on July 24 with
a 3-Week Great ClutterBust!

The Great ClutterBust!

Any life coach worth her salt will tell you the secret to accomplishing an enormous task is to do it one step at a time.

The problem is that chipping away at a mountain of clutter, tiny bit by tiny bit, doesn't give enough of a sense of transformation to keep up the momentum. That’s where many naturally-cluttery-types get stuck… including me!

I’m a big believer in “tiny and daily,” but sometimes you need a deep dive in order to make the kind of dramatic progress that will keep you moving forward.

Except that deep dives are hard to do alone... I'd never managed to do a deep dive on my own — it was just too overwhelming. I needed help.

That's Why I Created the Great ClutterBust

Here's the thing: when you've got a team at your back, holding you accountable, it makes the "impossible" possible, and it makes it fun!

Imagine if you had a gang of buddies come over to your house, lock you inside for a day and clutterbust with you. 

Wouldn't you get so much done? That's pretty much what we do (virtually) over the course of three weeks in the Great ClutterBust, and it works. The before and after pics you see here, from the 2014 Great ClutterBusts, tell all.

This is what YOU could accomplish, too:

The
My studio "Wall of Doom,"
BEFORE the Great ClutterBust.
Studio of Doom - before
My "Studio of Doom,"
BEFORE the Great ClutterBust
Allison's closet BEFORE the Great ClutterBust
Allison's closet
BEFORE the Great ClutterBust

My new (still in-process!) Ikea hack standing desk / treadmill desk!!
AFTER the Great ClutterBust: no more "Wall of Doom"!
Space to breathe, think, and CREATE!

AFTER the Great ClutterBust - no more Studio of Doom!
AFTER the Great ClutterBust: no more "Studio of Doom"!
Serenity, calm, and order.

Allison's closet AFTER the Great ClutterBust
Allison's closet
AFTER the Great ClutterBust. Ahhhh!

If I Can Do It, ANYONE Can Do It!

Melissa Dinwiddie - Dynamic Speaker, Author, Creative ConsultantI'm Melissa Dinwiddie, Artist, Happiness Catalyst & Creativity Instigator at Living A Creative Life.

For almost twenty years I felt powerless to deal with my clutter, particularly my Studio of Doom...

The Great ClutterBust changed my life, and it can change yours, too!

Why It Works

The Great ClutterBust works because I designed it to incorporate the 6 keys that eliminate procrastination and unlock kickass productivity (these are the keys that I share in my webinar of the same name). 

It works regardless of your schedule, because it is structured to be infinitely flexible:

You set the commitment level. You determine when and for how long you do your clutterbusting. And you get the support and accountability of a group of fellow clutterbusters who will hold your feet to the fire and cheer you on!

There are dozens of live check-ins that you may choose to participate in.

And because the Great ClutterBust happens inside the Creative Sandbox Community, there are unlimited opportunities to start spontaneous group clutterbusts, and to find clutterbusting accountability buddies to meet up with you, virtually, in real time. 

Whether you choose to participate in the pre-scheduled big ClutterBusting sessions or not, most people tackle a little bit — or a lot — on their own schedule, whether every day, or a few times a week, sharing "before" and "after" pics, keeping each other accountable and cheering each other on.

If you have struggled with clearing your clutter in the past, you will be amazed at how effective this is!

The Creative Sandbox Community - women's leadership trainingCommunity. Support. Friendship.

And perhaps the most progress you’ve ever made in three weeks toward your goal of that spacious, organized, beautiful space you’ve been longing for.

Just think: in three short weeks you could be walking into the dream space you’ve always wanted! Wouldn't you love that?

But that's just the start, because as an Annual Charter Member, you'll have ongoing support for the whole year and beyond!

Support, encouragement, and inspiration for:

  • Clearing out your clutter all throughout the year
  • Making time for the creative pursuits that have been calling to you 
  • Managing the gremlin voices telling you you're not good enough
  • Learning new techniques & trying new things
  • Stepping into new opportunities that might scare you
  • Discovering new resources 
  • Uncovering (and just reminding) yourself what you're capable of

We're waiting to welcome you inside!

Lock in an Annual Membership at the Charter Member Rate

  • Petrea Tomko
    The Great Clutterbust was so rich because it granted me this safe place to be vulnerable. You might ask why the need for vulnerability in cleaning out a house or a closet or studio or a box? Because what is unearthed can be a huge spectrum of raw emotions. The gift the group gave to one another was strength with tenderness through those tough times.
    Petrea Tomko

What to Expect & Why You Should Join Us In the Creative Sandbox

Women's leadership development• Meet other creative, open-hearted, like-minded women

• Make better, more well-informed decisions

• Get answers to questions you can’t Google!

• Support, encourage, and learn from each other

• Find inspiration every day 

• Bathe in our drama-free, kindness-infused culture

 Practice sharing your unique contributions in a safe space — the ideal leadership training ground!

Plus kick off with three weeks in the Great ClutterBust to clear your space, change your life, and make space to CREATE!

  • Leslie Coop
    The Creative Sandbox Community has helped me tremendously with accountability to help me get moving and keep going on my chosen work, with sharing daily (or at least frequent) creativity prompts to get the ideas moving, and with emotional support during a difficult time. I am immensely enjoying getting to know women from all over the world who share my love of art, writing, and all things creative. The resources, both human and informative, are priceless.
    Leslie Coop
  •  Kristine Boyle-Topee, Communications Professional
    Just wanted to let you know that in the short time I've been in the Sandbox already that I've been inspired, not only to move forward in my creative efforts, but have made the beginning steps in starting a business that I've been wanting to do (and talked myself out of) for several years. I have taken several leaps of faith in the last couple months, and it has led me to believe that the time is right to do this.
    Kristine Boyle-Topee, Communications Professional

Here's What You Get Inside:

We kick off with the Great ClutterBust, which runs from July 24-August 13. Three weeks to clear your clutter, slough off the extra baggage weighing you down, and make space to CREATE!

It's amazing how making SPACE lets you breathe and think again. :)

Those three weeks are just a start, though, because as an Annual Charter Member in the Creative Sandbox Community for women, you also get: 

 

• 24/7 access on web & mobile to smart, generous, kind, open-hearted women like you, who get it that your creative side is essential to who you are — we are here to support you as you continue to cluttebust, make your art, and grow! 

• Twice a Month Rally Calls — to discuss questions, challenges and victories; connect in real time with other members, or listen to the recording on your commute.

• Monthly live ArtShares — these are NOT critiques, they're just having fun! Video gatherings where members share what we’ve been creating, share resources, and laugh a lot. Right now these are twice a month, hosted by a member (Angi).

• Monthly Studio Work Days — designated “parallel time” co-working days, to get work done together. Right now Studio Work Days are MWF every week, hosted by a member (Leslie), and one weekend day every month, hosted by me.

• Monthly member-hosted creative challenges — a different member volunteers to design and host each month’s challenge, with a different prompt every day, so there’s always some creative inspiration if you need it!

• Weekly Accountability — check-ins and report-backs each Monday and Friday, to help keep you on track toward your big goals.

 Ongoing Accountability — monthly threads help keep you motivated with your workouts, clutterbusting, or anything else you need a little accountability on.

The Creative Sandbox WayParticipate in the "Studio Audience" on the Creative Sandbox Way™ podcast — as a member, you'll have an exclusive invitation to live interviews with podcast guests. Or post your question in advance for me to ask in your stead.

Hefty discounts on live Retreats and Playdays with me (over $300 value)

Creative Sandbox 101 — my flagship 7-day eCourse ($40 value)

BONUS: A signed copy of my book, The Creative Sandbox Way™: Your Path to a Full-Color Life ($14.95 value)

About the Founder, Melissa Dinwiddie

Melissa Dinwiddie, founder of the Creative Sandbox Community, author of The Creative Sandbox Way™A full-time freelance artist and calligrapher for 15 years, I developed a set of tools, based on the metaphor of a "creative sandbox," for pushing past creative block out of sheer desperation, to deal with my own decade-long crushing perfectionist paralysis.

Over time, I realized that the tools that worked to open up creative flow — for me and hundreds of my students and clients — transformed not just their creative lives, but all areas of of life, especially when the tools were used in the context of a supportive community.

I founded the Creative Sandbox Community as a women's leadership lab for practicing my Creative Sandbox philosophy in August of 2015. Then in 2016 I quite literally wrote the book on the subject, The Creative Sandbox Way™: Your Path to a Full-Color Life. 

The Creative Sandbox Way™ Podcast with Melissa DinwiddieI'm also host of the Creative Sandbox Way™ podcast, and founder, CEO, chief instigator and lead facilitator of Creative Sandbox Solutions™, a creative consultancy that helps organizations future-proof their people and their plans through the strategic use of play. 

None of these achievements would have been possible without the Creative Sandbox tools we learn and practice inside the Creative Sandbox Community! 

"The world needs your contributions! Come practice them here. See you in the Sandbox!" - Melissa Dinwiddie

Testimonials for the Great ClutterBust

  • Lisa Pepper-Satkin
    Melissa, clutterbusting has improved my marriage. I think getting rid of all of that gunk made an energetic pathway for more clarity between the two of us and our kids. I will forever be grateful….and no longer FULL of gunk!
    Lisa Pepper-Satkin
  • Irene Hurdle
    The procrastination bug has been in full force for too many years. But there is finally light at the end of the tunnel. Best of all, I am feeling better about myself, and have found some new friends in the process. What a treat!
    Irene Hurdle
  • Nana Campana
    I was not able to get creative in my studio because even when “organized”, it was not practical. So thanks to the Great ClutterBust I did a total overhaul and got rid of stuff… . Now I’m back to being creative and I love it!!
    Nana Campana
  • Denice
    Is it possible to over-rate calm and serenity? I’m beginning to think not! The Great ClutterBust … has been INSTRUMENTAL in helping me to recalibrate my focus, balance, momentum and commitment to getting it done, whatever “IT” turns out to be!
    Denice

Join the Creative Sandbox Community & Kick Off Your Membership with the Great ClutterBust!

When you join, you get an ongoing annual charter membership in my Creative Sandbox Community for women.

PLUS, you'll kick off your membership with three weeks of the Great ClutterBust!

What is clarity, serenity and freedom worth to you? How much would it be worth to you to walk into your space every day and smile, instead of cringing?

How much would it be worth to you to step into the biggest possible vision for yourself and your life? To finally live life in full color, knowing you have a tribe who has your back?  

Is it worth four months of cable? Or a year's worth of lattes? Or the price you paid for that super hot holiday outfit you just got?

Transform your space and change your life for just $400 $300...

       
     

When you sign up, you'll get an immediate access to the Creative Sandbox Community membership site on Mighty Networks. 

Creative Sandbox Community
Charter Membership
+ Great ClutterBust
$400 $300

Get the Great ClutterBust AND lock in Charter Member pricing on the Creative Sandbox Community for women! 12 months of membership for less than you'd pay for cable TV!

You'll be charged $400 $300 once a year.

All Great ClutterBust calls & content included, plus:

24/7 access on web & mobile to smart, generous, kind, open-hearted women like you, who get it that your creative side is essential to who you are — we are here to support you as you grow!

Twice-Monthly Rally Calls — your most pressing issues, recorded, so you can listen on your commute (or join live and connect in real time with other members!)

Monthly live ArtShares — these are NOT critiques, they're just having fun! Video gatherings where members share what we’ve been creating, share resources, and laugh a lot.

Monthly Studio Work Days — designated “parallel time” co-working days, to get work done together.

Monthly member-hosted creative challenges — a different member volunteers to design and host each month’s challenge, so there’s always some creative inspiration if you need it!

Weekly Accountability — check-ins and report-backs each Monday and Friday, to help keep you on track toward your big goals.

Ongoing Accountability — monthly threads help keep you motivated with your workouts, clutterbusting, or anything else you need a little accountability on.

Participate in the Creative Sandbox Way™ Podcast — ask questions of the guests, live or in advance!

Hefty Discounts on live Retreats and Playdays with Melissa. [$300+ value]

Creative Sandbox 101 — Melissa's flagship 7-day eCourse. [$40 value]

BONUS: A signed copy of Melissa's book, The Creative Sandbox Way™: Your Path to a Full-Color Life. [$14.95 value]

What Creative Sandbox Members Say

  • Vicki Gierach
    The Creative Sandbox has helped me stay connected with other people who are also struggling with inner gremlins and finding the time to be creative. Knowing that I'm not alone has led to a small miracle: I PICKED UP A PAINTBRUSH AND STARTED PAINTING AGAIN! I would recommend the Creative Sandbox to anyone who wants to dive deeply into their own journey of self-exploration and creativity. I am so thankful for this group.
    Vicki Gierach
  • Omaste Witkowski
    I love the sandbox because it is a great place to be creative with other like minded people. It is easy to feel disconnected and this group makes me feel connected 24/7. A special place to meet special people. :)
    Omaste Witkowski
  • Cathy Rininger Duffy
    I love the Creative Sandbox. I was initially hesitant to join, fearful that the “comparison trap” would just add to the gremlin voices in my head, but I have found quite the opposite - a group of incredibly talented and supportive people who encourage and inspire me. As I see kindness modeled, I am learning to speak kindness to myself. No matter the level of talent or ability, we all struggle with the same issues at one time or another. Being part of the Creative Sandbox keeps my toe, so to speak, in the flow of creativity - which makes it so much easier to just jump in and play. After a long, difficult and dry season of my life, it feels really good to discover the joy of creative play again. Thank you, Melissa!
    Cathy Rininger Duffy
  • Nana Campana
    You've been the catalyst for everything great in my life. Thanks to you, I became AWAKENED and empowered to finally DREAM BIG and know that I could actually reach what I placed before me. I will forever be grateful to you for having reawakened my heart and my passions. It is something I will forever owe you.
    Nana Campana
  • Allison Culley
    I am enjoying the Creative Sandbox because of the vibrant community. I can honestly say two of my current creative passions, altered books and negative space, were directly inspired as a result of joining this group.
    Allison Culley
  • Petrea Tomko
    Whatever Melissa offers, I want to be a part of. My first group with her was the Great ClutterBust. I had just decided I needed to do a major overhaul of my studio, since I was just declaring myself an "artist" for the first time. Timidly I did so in the context of that group. What I received there was encouragement I never dreamed of to push through to that end. Joining the Creative Sandbox was just the natural next step for me.

    Inside I found weapons to fight the gremlins. You have people giving you honest helpful feedback for your work. You get to explore new media without damaging repercussions. You get courage. You get hope. When you get down, you get help getting back up. You make friends you long to live near. It's a win-win for all.
    Petrea Tomko

FAQs

What happens on the ClutterBust calls?

Very little time is spent on the calls themselves. Everyone checks in — via voice or text chat — to state their goal for the session. Then we all head off to bust our clutter, knowing that we’ll be checking back in at the end of the session.

It’s amazing how much you can get done when you know there are people waiting to hear a report-back!

At the designated time, everyone calls back in and reports on how it went, what adjustments they may need to make to their goals going forward (we often have eyes bigger than our stomachs, as it were…)

I keep the spirit fun and self-loving, coach and cheerlead as necessary.

What if the session times aren’t good for me?

There will be scheduled ClutterBusts on multiple different days, at multiple different times. Hopefully at least a few of those will work for you.

But if not (or if you’re just an eager beaver and want more), you are invited and encouraged to host additional ClutterBust sessions at any times that work for you!

If you let me know in advance, I’ll even add them to the Official Event Calendar.

We also have a designated Zoom room, just for spontaneous co-working sessions that you are welcome to use — just post in our Mighty Network what time you'll be doing a spontaneous bust (up to and including "now"!), and someone else might just join you. :)

In addition, past ClutterBusters have found that the online forum alone has worked wonders keeping them on track.

 Are the calls recorded?

Just the monthly Creative Sandbox Q&A Rally Calls will be recorded. The ClutterBust sessions are present-time experiences only and will not be recorded.

Do I have to attend all the live ClutterBust sessions?

Nope. Come to as many or as few as you like. Easy, peasy.

Can I get a refund if I change my mind?

Nope, the Creative Sandbox and the Great ClutterBust are a non-refundable investment, and here’s why:

Part of the reason those of us with clutter have a clutter issue is because of the emotions tied to our stuff. Clutterbusting will, by its nature, bring stuff up. That’s one of the reasons clearing and clutterbusting often brings such great change into your life!

The Great ClutterBust is not just an opportunity to purge, but a container to work on that stuff.

Similarly, there are emotions tied to creativity, and the Creative Sandbox Community is a container to work on that stuff.

It would be irresponsible of me as a teacher and changemaker to offer you an easy out anytime you get the tiniest bit uncomfortable.

In other words, please do not click that buy button unless you’re sure you want this!

I have more questions…

Shoot me an email. Or phone me at 866-538-8268. I’ll be happy to answer whatever questions you’ve got!

  • Jessica Sanders
    I've been following Melissa for quite some time now. So, when she opened up the Creative Sandbox, I was interested. With my busy schedule, I wasn't sure I would have time to participate. I signed up at the last minute with just because I wanted to be involved with the group. The community Melissa has created is so amazing. There's no pressure, yet there is accountability. We're all here to learn, to grow creatively, and to support each other. We face many of the same challenges -- it's so nice to have the support and friendship I have found here. :)
    Jessica Sanders
  • Claudia Tammen
    I am learning 2 things from the Creative Sandbox with Melissa. First I notice it is becoming much easier to sit down and make art. Melissa has given us the tools to deal with fear, perfectionistic tendencies, and comparison to others. Now I just sit down and play -- and ideas come all the time. Secondly, I am becomming more compassionate with myself. The permission to "make crap" is so positive. And the group is so supportive with each other. I enjoy posting what I've done and seeing posts from others. Thanks, Melissa!
    Claudia Tammen
  • Jeannie Harwell

    Hi Melissa,

    I just wanted to say how much I've enjoyed your programs and how much I've gotten out of them.

    As you know, I've done a variety of them now, and I keep coming back because your groups have a really special blend of enthusiasm and energy. I never fail to make true friendships that have continued on outside of the groups, and deeply relish the special connections within the groups that I make with fellow artists or folks in the process of discovering their creativity. We all have different starting points, but it's wonderful to walk together.

    Beyond the connections, there is something about the blend of energy and focus in the groups that gives me that little extra push when working on my own goals, whether it be clutterbusting, creative exploration, or playing in the sandbox.

    Invaluable and worth every penny.

    Thanks for all that you do, your vision and enthusiasm. I'm looking forward to enjoying more of your programs!

    Jeannie Harwell
  • Sharon Wildwind
    I love to see the variety of projects that people work on. Gives me great ideas. And it feels like such a safe place to show things and to ask questions.
    Sharon Wildwind

Share the Creative Joy!

Melissa Dinwiddie - Hooray!!!