Sometimes we can get into a rut and find it difficult to be creative. For example, I sometimes have the urge to write, but when I sit down at my keyboard I find there aren’t any words. I simply can’t get started.
What I’ve learned is that I occasionally have to stimulate my creativity. Sort of like jump-starting a car battery. I need to make the right connections to get that jolt for the creative engine to start.
Here are a few of the things I do to get my creativity flowing:
It’s basically what it sounds like. If I can’t seem to focus or get started, I’ll simply write about that. I’ll bitch and complain about my lack of focus, list the things I need to accomplish, and eventually the creative motor roars to life and I’m on my way.
You can write about anything you want. You can do like I do and vent, or you could write about your day, what you see outside your window, or maybe list the chores you need to accomplish. The point is, just write something, anything.
I find that listening to music can get the creative motor jump-started. I don’t mean put on some music and do other things. I’m talking about putting on music, maybe some headphones, then sitting back and really listening to the music. Pick out individual instruments to follow, allow the lyrics to create images in your mind, feel yourself carried away by the rhythm.
There’s something to be said for immersing oneself in music. I find it both therapeutic and inspiring. Give it a try and see what it does for you.
Being outside in the fresh air and taking in the natural surroundings always warms my heart and puts me in a creative mood. Sometimes it’s as simple as stepping into the backyard and listening to the birds, watching lizards basking in the sun, tending to my potted plants.
Other times I like to go on nature walks with my partner. We head out to some of the local parks and wander the trails, stopping to take pictures of the flowers, the mushrooms, maybe to enjoy the gurgling of a hidden stream.
Something about natural settings triggers a part of my brain and I’ll start to have ideas for stories, poems, maybe even a song.
It doesn’t matter if you live in an urban area. There’s nature somewhere around you. A park, a small patch of woods, or even your yard if you’re lucky enough to own or rent a home. Just open your eyes and take it in.
I don’t necessarily reading an entire story or chapter of a book, although that can also work. What I do here is grab a random book off one of the many shelves in my house, open to a random page, and read a bit. I find that doing this forces my brain to shift to a creative mode.
Reading a random paragraph (or poem, or fragment of an essay, etc.) makes my brain seek out connections and context. This, in turn, fires up the creative furnace and I find ideas begin to pop into my head, or I start to think about that dormant story I need to work on and find the inspiration to do so.
What Works For You
What it comes down to is finding what works for you. It may be one thing, it may be several, or it may change from time to time. The thing is, don’t get discouraged. We all run into dry spells or find it hard to get started. At least you know you’re not alone in this.
Find things, places, sounds, and sights that inspire you, then revisit them as often as possible. Then get back to being creative.