Well Being

10 Ways To Boost Creativity

A couple of years ago we were gifted with our ‘creative awakening’. In the space of a couple of months we found ourselves sitting in our tiny studio apartment buried in notebooks, sketchpads, pens, modelling clay, musical instruments and a vast collection of acrylic paints. Going out to buy the items was the fun (and easy part) but what happened next seems to happen to us all of the time. During the process of painting, writing, creating music and even modelling tiny sloth Christmas decorations, and after a couple of months, we found ourselves reaching the ‘creative wall’ where we would completely stop, mid-project, and start another until we ran out of creative ideas to try.

We seemed to be drowning our own creativity with doubts and pointless thoughts, “Who is going to use this?”, “Why am I spending so much time on this painting?”, “Do I really need to learn the ukulele?”, “Nobody is going to publish this book”. We completely stopped everything and we boxed up all of our half used paraphernalia and continued our lives as they were before. Weeks passed by and the abandoned projects gathered dust as they sat desperately screaming out to be finished in our kitchen cupboard. We listened to our own demons, those that had been drummed into us for so long.

Time passed by before we had our second awakening when we came across our half finished pieces of art when we moved apartments. A new environment and fresher eyes on our work gave us the creative boost we needed and we weren’t going to let it go this time. Creating art in any form is a portal to who we really are. A way of expressing what lies beneath our physical facade. Our art should be shared with the world around us because of the power it brings to others. Have you ever hand written a letter to a loved one? See how they treasure it. When we create, we momentarily forget about the world around us. Creating helps us feel more alive and closer to our spiritual warmth.
We think of art as the soul talking, sometimes we feel like we lose control when we create. Even if something is unfinished, the creative process is a learning curve towards the creative optimum. You learn something from everything. We often draw, write, model clay, learn and play musical instruments and we do it every single day while we travel. We see it as essential soul nourishment that keeps us connected to who we really are.

We follow 10 simple tricks that helps us boost creativity whenever we need it most:

Do Something Every Single Day

No matter how small! Carry a notebook and even if you only write a sentence, a quote, a meme, a poem, draw a picture, play on an instrument for five minutes, you are actively encouraging your own soul to crave this practice. We try and commit to writing or drawing for 30 minutes every day and playing an instrument for around the same time. Visit a music shop and play on their demo equipment during your lunch break or while you are traveling if it isn’t feasible to carry something with you. 30 minutes a day adds up to 15 hours a month and if you find yourself a set time of the day to do something, the routine will encourage your creative force to work more. It’s even better to break the time spent into different times of the day, if you commit to 15 minutes in the morning and 15 minutes at night, chances are your art will be on your mind in between so your brain and soul will actively look for inspiration which technically means you’re working all day on your project.

You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have. Maya Angelou

boost creativity tips blog
Image Credit: Pixabay

Never Underestimate the Power of Art

In a world where we’re discouraged from adult creativity, be a Grandma Moses. She started painting at 78 and her piece Sugaring Off was sold for US $1.2 million in 2006.
There are so many modern day obstacles trying to entice us away from creating art. Work, mundane routines and fatigue and it’s important to remember what the world would be like without art.
We wouldn’t have books, paintings, television, movies, Netflix, gaming, cinema, dancing and music without creators.
Every TV show starts with a writer and a script, every game starts with artists working on a concept to devise visual imagery. Imagine if you could contribute to a world that entertains others. Imagine making other people smile, weep, wince and burst into joy from your painting or your book or a song that you wrote.
Remember, art is one of the most treasured relics you can create, remember when you were a child and your family pinned one of your drawings from school on the door of the refrigerator? There really is nothing more precious other than yourself in physical form. Let people hear or see your inner capabilities, practice well and often.

Art is the only serious thing in the world. And the artist is the only person who is never serious. Oscar Wilde

Once you understand the importance of art in today’s world, in whichever format, you will find the ignition to your creative boost. Tell yourself you must contribute to this world with your own ideas, even if you are the only audience. It’s also beneficial for self-reflection to look at what you are capable of creating.

Listen to Creative Music

Listening to all forms of creative music can be a method of focus to us all. Find your own personal space, even if it’s in a busy cafe with some decent headphones and find what music suits you. We have a great list of suggested creative meditation music on YouTube here:

Not only does this carefully and beautifully produced music offer a silence of sort from the real world, some of the compilations also contain frequency waves that are said to activate the creative part of your mind as well as regenerate brain cells.

We recommend some of the following creativity music to try:

Find a Creative Buddy

One way to boost creativity is to have an accountable creative partner or partners. Buddy up with someone who is also trying to achieve the same creative goals and with mutual encouragement, you can boost creativity together.

boost creativity blog
Image Credit: Pixabay

Share your work with one another, discuss your targets and progress and exchange encouraging words every day, you’ll be surprised how uplifting sharing can be.

Reward Yourself Often

When we find our creative boost, we always present ourselves with a reward. Usually, it’s a nice coffee and a cake in a cafe where we go to write, it’s a good carrot to dangle in front of yourself to encourage you to go somewhere to be creative. Sometimes we’ll agree to eat out or treat ourselves to the cinema or another fun activity once we’ve spent time woking on our art. Figure out what you like to treat yourself to and give it to yourself during or after you create. It makes the process fun and you’re tricking your own brain to get it to create for a satisfying reward! You could even save up little bits at a time every time you create and treat yourself to a vacation or a weekend away once your project is completed.

Share Your Work, Even In Draft

As a creator, it’s easy to isolate yourself and sit on your own work. Sometimes for many years and that’s a shame because the world deserves to see what you are capable of creating. Some people choose to never share their work for fear of negative feedback or misunderstanding. As scary as it seems, we found that one of the best ways to boost creativity is to simply find reassurance and feedback from others. I sent a chapter of my first fiction novel to a group of friends who had responded to my Facebook post where I asked if anybody would be willing to read my material. Turns out I have an avid group of bookworms in my friends list and they gave me great feedback with a couple of suggested changes. Nothing offensive, nothing hurtful, just an encouraging and useful experience. Once you get over the initial fear of sharing your draft work for the first time, you will smash the wall of self doubt into smithereens.

Redefine Perfection

Perfection is a word without a true meaning, one of the only words that hold its own definition in the eye of the beholder. Is there such a thing as perfection? Is J.K. Rowling the ‘perfect’ writer? Is Salvador Dali the ‘perfect painter’? To some yes, to others no. It’s important to remember when we think of perfection, that you can not please everybody equally, because we are all so beautifully unique. So, when you’re working on that sci-fi fiction novel, remember a romance book fanatic may not like it, but that doesn’t mean it’s not enjoyable. We live in a world where it’s generally practiced to point out the bad than it is to compliment others. There are many reasons for negative feedback, some don’t stem from the work itself. We all draft, and rework, and rework, and rework. You may never feel like you’ll be happy with your creative piece but trust the process.

Clear Your Mind and Relax, Regularly

Our minds absorb many pointless and negative experiences and emotions throughout the day. We lie in bed overthinking about everything we went through, replaying scenarios that have already passed and it’s clouding up our creativity.
There are many things you can do to reset your brain and clear your thoughts of negativity and overthinking.
Listen to meditation music or guided meditations before bed and/or when you wake up. We recommend:

As well as meditation, yoga is a proven practice to clear your mind and boost your focus. If you aren’t a regular practicing yogi and would like to learn the basic moves at your own pace, we recommend the 30 days of Yoga with Adrienne. She steadily takes you on a wonderful journey into yoga and you don’t need to do the 30 days consecutively.

If spiritual practices aren’t your thing, you can always turn to nature to reset your mind, body and soul. Go for a walk in the woods, or around your neighborhood during a quiet time. Visit quiet places such as churches and libraries and soak in the atmosphere. Your thoughts will quickly redefine themselves in the right surroundings.

Look for Inspiration in the Right Places

You’ll be surprised at the places you can find inspiration, which is why we always carry a notebook everywhere we go. Most cities and towns have free public libraries that are bursting with existing art ready for you to embrace. Most cities have parks where people watching is one of the grandest past times when looking for inspiration. Some writers set up in the arrivals area of an airport where a whirlwind of different emotions and experiences can be felt and seen.

look for inspiration boost creativity
Image Credit: Pixabay

Utilize Your Emotions

As a two-time cancer survivor, during the first few stages of my diagnosis and treatment, the thought of creating art never stood out to me as a coping mechanism. My negative emotions were a tsunami, a powerful wave that drown every part of my mind and soul. One day, I had too many emotions running through my mind and it gave me a horrendous bout of insomnia, so in the middle of the night, I picked up a notebook and I wrote some of the deepest and most meaningful poetry I have ever written. Through tears and pain came a beautiful and powerful piece of art. If you can embrace your emotion and turn it into something physical, it may help take a weight off in the dark times and add light to the good times. Write, paint, draw or compose something about love, loss, hate, pain, trauma, experiences, family, friends, children, pets, laughter, your hometown, your favorite place or even your most prized possession. Some of the greatest artists of our time created masterpieces while experiencing a form of extreme emotion.

“But feelings can’t be ignored, no matter how unjust or ungrateful they seem.” Anne Frank, The Diary of a Young Girl

We hope you found our suggestions to boost creativity useful, we try to stick to them every day. Life gets in the way of many things, so let your soul pop out every now and again and remind you how incredible you are. Entice ideas out with some ‘you time’. We’d love to hear how you get on.

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