by Jenny Leigh Hodgins
I have more blogs and podcasts that cover this topic from different perspectives under my Creativity, and Inspiration sections, so check those out! I also learn about the creative process from the creators and positivity experts I interview for YourCreativeChord Podcast.
I sometimes use my ‘Creative Exploration Formula’ (see above image) for jumpstarting a creative project. This is a way for creators to get in the creative zone, minus the negative inner critic, to start a new project or continue one. It’s a step by step process, but as creators, we know that rules are for breaking.
So change it, break it, throw any part of it out the window if the muse has landed with you.
GET INSIDE YOUR BOX!
Start by setting limitations or parameters for yourself, or by placing yourself within a structure. This gives you a clear box where you’ll set yourself to work on creating something new. The idea of limits may already be set for you if it’s a professional task you must complete.
Remember that limits are a good way for sparking fresh ideas that wouldn’t normally flow if everything were wide open or willy-nilly, anything goes.
Limits force you to think. Thinking within limitations pushes you to find a new way to do something. Being in a particular box is good in this sense.
If you get blocked creatively, find a way to break open that box.
LET GO OF YOUR HEAD!
Before you begin creating something, you must mindfully let go of your head, whatever mood you’re in, any expectations, and check your ego at the door. None of these are welcome in the creative process. They are the uninvited. Let them go.
The point is to not care about your results. Yet.
MAKE IT STUPID.
During some creative sessions, I’ve set myself the goal of writing the worst possible song I’ve ever composed. I purposely strike the attitude that I do not care about the result. I strive to make it stupid. Ignore all the rules or protocol.
I do that to forcefully eject any expectations or inner critic from my inner space. Ninety percent of the time that I use this strategy, my creative results blow me away with positive ideas I would never expect to emerge.
Getting rid of that inner critic is a super powerful way to get creative juices pumping!
TUNE IN TO YOUR INNER COMPASS.
I silence myself to tune into what I believe in or care about. I hone in on my powerful feelings or beliefs. I let everything be guided by that inner compass. It is authentic and mystic.
It’s both my higher power and my deepest desires, dreams, wants (or sometimes, pain), or passion. I allow that place to fill my silence with truth, no matter what it feels or looks or sounds like. I let the creative voice flow.
If I hear negativity creep in, I start again from the top:
I tap into my heart with an open, pure curiosity to learn and be led.
I allow my curiosity to explore, brainstorm, try anything and anything. I allow myself to be okay with whatever happens. I go deep into this process, ignoring all rules or outer ‘voices.’
I pretend that everything is an experiment. Because it is.
ENVISION WITH GREAT ATTENTION
Sometimes, I spend time visualizing. I envision the mood, color, sound, story, setting that I intend to express. I practice deeply feeling these, through each nuance, change, or detail, and through each of my senses.
I allow for failure. I invite failure. In the words of L.A. Composer, Kristen Baum, who I recently featured on YourCreativeChord podcast, "Failure tells you as much as success." I use failure, mistakes or messing up to ignite my curiosity for inquiry. I ask myself why it’s not working.
Once I find something not working, I ask myself what I could instead substitute. I make shifts, changes, and "redesigns" based on the answers from my questions about the 'failure.'
My ‘Creative Exploration Formula’ leads me through the creative process like a trusted friend. But if I feel creative block and am unable to dislodge myself from it, I review my list of ways for nurturing creativity.
Watch for next week's blog featuring ways for nurturing creativity...
YourCreativeChord offers quality content, a positive community, and support for those interested in nurturing creativity and inspiration.
I’d love to hear from you. It means a lot to me that my content is helpful and empowers you. Please take a moment to join the conversation below to let me know if you find this blog helpful or if you have questions or suggestions!
In my blog, Learning To Be Creative, I walk through my creative process in a simplified way.
What Are Ways For Nurturing Creativity And Inspiration? Part 2
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How To Deflect Negativity To Become Happier
Believing In The Positive
My Top Tips For Winning Over Your Insomnia
How To Live A Life of Joyful Creativity
5 Ways To Use Music & Nature For Self-Care
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COMING SOON: Watch this space for new ebooks, products and courses for nurturing creativity and inspiration!
In my CREATIVITY blogs, you’ll find tips for exploring creative flow, and inspiring content related to the inherent challenges and tremendous joy within the creative process.