I am going to tell you how to massively increase your creativity in one simple super easy trick. You will find your own creative wellspring is full and the ideas are overflowing! You will find that you have to keep a notebook close by to catch all of the ideas that are jumping around in your head!
But first let's explore what "creativity" is.
I think most people think creativity is a trait that only "right-brained artistic people" possess. They think creative people are only artists.
Yes, artist do possess creativity, but so do people who love to do woodworking, writing, styling makeup, hair or clothes, cooking, playing music, gardening, reading, metalworking, crafting, DIY, interior decorating, telling jokes, entertaining, acting, solving a problem, thinking of better ways to serve the community, tinker, etc. The list of what could be deemed "creative" is infinitely endless. If you create something, you are using creativity.
It is basic human nature to be curious and creative. Humans create, both functional objects such as computers, robots, calculators and also things that purely make our souls soar like poetry, song lyrics, your favorite dessert while you sip your favorite wine.
Creativity can come in the form of an accountant by day, but a lover of cooking for family and friends at night. A graphic designer by day and a fashion stylist during the weekends. A father who works a major left brain job during the day, but then comes home and engineers My Little Pony stages and pulley systems across the playroom. A mother crafting with her kiddos passing on her love of gluesticks, sequins and felt. To create is a blessing to all of us and a talent I believe we all possess.
Here is the 1 trick it takes to find more of your own creativity immediately:
Turn off other people's creativity
I read Julia Cameron's book The Artist's Way not too long ago. Do not let the title of the book fool you. This book benefits both creative people who feel blocked and people who would even deem themselves "not creative."
In one of her chapters, Julia suggests trying a week of "reading deprivation." What the hell? I almost shut the book and never picked it back up! First of all, I am an introvert and books and I are besties. I always have a book with me. Second of all, I am in the middle of reading Julia's book! Now I am supposed to stop?! Then it hit me. I realized what she was asking.
She is asking for us to turn off other people's creativity for a small section of time. That simple act will force you to sit in silence. Listen to the white noise. Feel your mind start to freak out and squirm around. After some time, your own mind will start to think of thoughts and ideas to pursue and contemplate. You will start to feel the floodgates opening and your own creativity will start flowing.
What I had to turn off
Once I started paying attention, I realized I had a HUGE list of other people's creativity that I had to turn off:
- social media - duh. looking at other people's creativity will shut yours down super quick!
- searching for pinterest recipes
- movies - especially Hallmark movies. (my guilty pleasure and major time sucker!)
- mindless tv watching
- podcasts - try talking a walk in silence. I dare you not to think of something creative!
- blogs / blog worksheets
- moving cell phone & iPad out of whatever room I was in - talk about a distraction
- going out to eat - food is someone's creative gift to others
Once I was able to see where I was being distracted by other people's creativity, I was able to consciously shut those off for a time. I was able to sit with my own thoughts, which at first were none, then they were all over the place and then slowly, my own words and divine inspirations started to peak through the silence.
What I was able to create
I was able to:
- design my new website in 1 week! (portfolio & blog included!)
- brainstorm 100 blog post ideas in 1 hour
- brainstorm and create a social media content calendar
- re-ignite my love of healthy cooking & baking for my family and friends which has been non-existant since my grandmother passed away in April
- start my yoga practice back up which was also cast aside as I grieved for my grandmother
- hosting mentor group dinners again
- re-brand my own design business
- discover an interest in public speaking
- discover a love of journaling and problem solving
- discover a love of serving other women through encouraging words and self discovery tips
- brainstormed a mastermind business group for women at my church
Once you turn off other people's gifts and talents, you will find your own in the silence.
If you are stuck, don't feel creative or are unsure of your natural creativity
If you do not feel anything, ask yourself some journal prompt questions, such as:
- what did you love to do as a kid?
- what comes naturally to you that people comment to you about all the time?
- list 5 things you would love to do if time and money were no object?
- what lights you up?
- list 5 silly things you would try once?
- do you have any hobbies? what hobbies sound interesting?
- take a quiet walk early in the morning or late in the evening and listen to your heart
Turn off other people's creativity. Sit in the silence. Listen for your own inner ideas and inspirations. When given the time and space, your own creativity will come bubbling forth. It might start as a trickle, but if given the chance, it might turn into a mighty river!
Stop reading this post. Turn off everything else. Be still. Breathe. Listen...I can not wait to see what you bring forth!
Do you have any creative distractions not listed above? What did you create or dream up when you shut down all the outside creativity? I would love to know!