Thursday, March 8, 2012

10 Ways to Light Your Creative Spark

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Sometimes when we HAVE to work on a project (business plan, report, blog post, whatever) the motivation, enthusiasm and inspiration can leave us. The creativity is all there somewhere inside, you just need to find the spark to get the juices going.

It's often just a change of activity that subtly entices out your imagination.

Here are some actions I have found useful to help me light my creative spark:

1. Take yourself out on an Artist Date
This is a solo excursion somewhere that will be nourishing and invigorating to your creative soul. This could be to the movies, the shopping centre, a beading shop, the beach, an art gallery, a session at cafe, a cupcake bakery, a tourist attraction - basically anywhere that screams out INSPIRATION to you.

Immersing yourself in a different environment while you observe the happenings of nature or of other humans can help you get into the flow.

You could have your notepad, ideas journal or laptop at the ready to capture your creative work when it starts pouring out.

Julia Cameron advocates this as one of her two important tools in The Artist's Way (a fabulous book and well worth a read).

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2. Write in your journal
Just getting 'stuff' out of your head and onto paper can free up space in your mind for more. Write whatever comes to your head whether it makes sense or not! It is not about cultivating the perfect sentances and capturing the right sentiments. It is about expressing yourself.

I soooooooo strongly recommend journalling for working through emotions, getting to know yourself more, getting unstuck, venting (we all need an outlet!) as well as dreaming and planning. There is something magical about getting things written down.

Write everyday if you can, or just as often as you can. If you do it on a regular basis it will change something in you - I've learned that from experience!

Write down whatever is going on in that head of yours for 15 minutes and see if that jolts a spark in you.

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3. Flip through a magazine
One that is visually appealing, not one where you're going to be reading about 'trash' - you know, about Miss Two and questions about discharge (sorry, I just had to ;). One that appeals to the aesthetic in you where there are beautiful pictures or typography. Immerse yourself in that world for a few minutes and see if the spark ignites!

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 4. Doodle, scribble, draw!
Go get yourself a blank piece of paper and some coloured pens, markers or textas. Then draw something. Anything! An item in front of you, something from your imagination, scribble, create an ocean of multi-coloured love hearts, draw a bubble alphabet. Use lots of colours. You don't need to show ANYBODY. So don't judge. It doesn't matter if it doesn't look like anything - be an abstract artiste! Set a timer for 15 mins. Ready, set, go! Are those creative juices starting to flow??

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5. Flip through a cook book 
Or a cooking blog and then look at your cupboard and make something. Measure, chop, slice, stir. Add pinches of salt with exaggerated flourish. Blast some italian opera (because I know that is just loaded and ready to go on your iPod). Present your dish pretty on the plate. Take a pic of it for creative prosperity. Eat it. Then go back to work - that spark is ignited!

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6. Organise something!
A shelf or a drawer or your desk. Clear out your handbag and wallet. Plan out your week ahead. Putting something into order always seems to spark my creativity.

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7. Read or browse something inspiring
Catch up on your fav blogs, browse Pinterest (request an invite if you're not on there yet!), or look at images on we heart it. Seeing the things other people are working on, their perspectives and inspiring articles can be motivating. But only do it for a limited amount of time. It is super easy to get carried away and forget the thing you really should be doing!

8. Get dressed up
Hop in the shower, wash off the cobwebs, put on an empowering outfit, do your hair, paint on a face, spray on some perfume, stand up straight, slip on some heels and voila. You've created a new person with a new perspective! All ready to charge ahead and get some things done (even if no one else can see you!).
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9. Listen to music
LOUD and dance around. Self explanatory...Right? Dance like nobody is watching.

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10. Go for a walk
Get into nature and observe the little things and the big things around you. Breathe deeply. Crouch down and look at a blade of grass. Lie down and gaze up into the sky. Raise your arms and your face to the sun.
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Now go and get that creative project underway! Vamos!

How do you get your creative spark going?

Make it as you wish SSSs!
Arienne xo

Just about to run off to an International Women's Day event - happy IWD everyone!

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