The Gift of Making Something or how to bring more creativity into your life - Part II

"If at first the idea is not absurd, then there is no hope for it” – Albert Einstein

So last week in Part 1, we talked about our intention to create (and the difference between creating and getting), success in the moment of creation and our subconscious brain (where all our gazillions of experiences are stored).

(this sounds like alot of stuff to talk about and you may have nodded off during some of it and naps are totally allowed and encouraged actually)

This week we are focused on the practices that will get our creativity flowing and work with those blocks.

(I think blocks will always come up - sometimes to test how badly you want to do something, sometimes to get you going in a new direction and sometimes just to give you a break - there is an ebb and flow to all of this creating that is bigger than we are; bigger than any plans we may be busy making)

We are all creative- that is really all we are. There is no one who is not creative.

There are people whose intentions are elsewhere (or nowhere) and people who are blocked from the flow (all of us at one time or another most likely), but we've all got it.

(and we've always had it, to quote Glinda)

You don't have to be able to draw anything to be creative, you just have to know what moves you.

1. Practice authenticity. Now, this has become kind of a meaningless buzzword these days, so let me get specific. This is about practicing creativity in other areas of your life and letting that authentic creativity spill into your work.

And the more creative you are with the rest of your life - the more that same passion has to flow into your work!

Prepare food from scratch. Write a letter by hand. Plant something. Get a pet. Spend time with a child. Have an important conversation. Tell someone how you really feel. Be mindful of what you are eating. Clean up after yourself. Be mindful of how you are spending your money. Don't ask for other people's opinions. You decide.

2. Create change. Small changes can trigger very big things.

Listen to music you have never listened to before- really spend some time with it.

Read a book from a section of the library you never visit. Wear something you would never wear. Try a new food.

Before you do almost any mindless task ask yourself if there is another way to do this - tie your sneakers the double loop way. Put on a sock and a shoe and a sock and a shoe - you get the picture.

3. Create experiences. Remember how your subconscious brain takes all these past experiences that your conscious brain doesn't even remember -

(I am really hoping some part of my brain is remembering something these days)

and uses those experience to generate ideas and solve problems creatively -

so you need to get out and do things.

Go for a walk. Visit a gallery - it is not ok to just check out the website. See a live performance- there is something about the exchange of energy in a live performance that creates a different creative spark than a movie or television.

Try a new craft. Do something you think you will probably not be very good at- this is about creating experiences, not a resume - you are totally allowed (and even encouraged) to stink.

4. Set up the right systems, habits and schedule. Although inspiration and creation needs spontaneity, we can't sit around waiting to “feel like" making something or drawing something or writing something or for an idea to hit us over the head.

(because it probably won't and I guarantee the day a huge idea falls out of the sky and hits me on the head I will have looked skyward for just that one second and this massive idea will probably break my nose and leave me unconscious and unable to recall what happened to me - luckily my unconscious mind will retain this idea so that when someone else has a huge creative breakthrough with it, I can realize it seems slightly familiar)

You need to make time for this stuff. Have a system in place before the practice begins. Make a schedule, make physical room for creativity in your work room. Set up a table just for creative work. Get a timer and play. Start a journal. Make a collage.

You can't phone this stuff in. You just have to do it.

(can you tell I have been working out to Jillian Michaels - by this expression I mean, not by my abs ...)

5. Have fun! We created our lives minute by minute when we were children and we did it by having fun.

We have the choice to ask ourselves if we really believe that everything is falling apart- that things are going nowhere fast, that things are hopeless or do we really believe that we have something different to create? A different way of being in the world -

something that is totally unique to us. The thing that if we don't do it, it "don't get done".

We get to decide whether we want to play small or whether we want to expand - it is always our choice. And sometimes this is a choice that we have to reinforce with ourselves daily when things are not going exactly as we would like.

But, the great thing about being creative, about being a creator, is we get to create another way. We get to embrace change in a really big way.

If we only "get" one life – why not decide to create a freakin' amazing one?

(do what you love print by letterhappy)
There is an amazing post on Kagan's blog expanding on this same theme!


christen [good day sunshine] said...

wow. great post! thanks so much for including my print, too! LOVE your blog :)

Orion Designs said...

This is such an inspiring post, full of great, but really do-able suggestions.

Anonymous said...

There is ONE creator and it isn't YOU

Catherine Ivins said...

Thanks Christen and Vicki!

Anon - well, I certainly didn't mean to imply that I created THAT universe - I do think though that I had a very large hand in creating my own ... for better or worse

xo- Cat :)

Sherry said...

Cat, this was really a wonderful post. I find that when I do open myself to new experiences and look at things in a different way, my life is fuller and richer. We do control much of our own destiny by the choices we make.


Jane Pierce aka zJayne said...

Love this...and how you put it all together.

DO "make time to create"... I've found that to be a point that isn't always realized.

Kendra Zvonik said...

Thank you for this wonderful post, Cat! It feels very relevant to me right now as I am establishing my new and improved studio. I suddenly have 5 times the space to work with and I have to decide which direction to go. As exciting as it is to expand, it is also added pressure to create something fantastic!
So, your reminder to start by doing things in a more mindful way and by just doing something new is powerful, yet simple and do-able. Habits are obstacles to creativity and some of my biggest obstacles are all in my head. I am suddenly finding myself around lots of people and some of them are coming into my studio. Working in isolation for so long has also been a form of me hiding. So, I am doing something new just by talking to "real" people and I feel it impacting my creativity in a positive way already. Of course, I still love and value my online friends more than they will ever know!
Love you!