I have not been feeling very creative lately. Creative activities I usually enjoy such as drawing, playing piano and decorating my home do not interest me right now. I have spoken with several other women that are experiencing the same thing.
I decided to investigate a bit. I learned that we can slip into habits that interfere with our creative flow, and if we identify and work at correcting these habits our creativity can once again burst forth with joy.
The top 3 creativity stifling bad habits:
Creating and evaluating at the same time
You can’t drive a car in first gear and reverse at the same time. Likewise, you shouldn’t try to use different types of thinking simultaneously. You’ll strip your mental gears.
Creating means generating new ideas, visualizing, looking ahead, considering the possibilities. Evaluating means analyzing and judging, picking apart ideas and sorting them into piles of good and bad, useful and useless.
Most people evaluate too soon and too often, and therefore create less. In order to create more and better ideas, you must separate creation from evaluation, coming up with lots of ideas first, then judging their worth later
Lack of confidence
A certain level of uncertainty accompanies every creative act. A small measure of self-doubt is healthy. However, you must have confidence in your abilities in order to create and carry out effective solutions to problems. Much of this comes from experience, but confidence also comes from familiarity with how creativity works.
When you understand that ideas often seem crazy at first, that failure is just a learning experience, and that nothing is impossible, you are on your way to becoming more confident and more creative. Instead of dividing the world into the possible and impossible, divide it into what you’ve tried and what you haven’t tried. There are a million pathways to success
Fear of ambiguity
This is MY issue right here. I, like most everyone, like things to make sense and remain predictable. Creativity for me always means messy and grey vs. black and white. Most creative ideas emerge from a swirl of chaos. You must develop a part of yourself that is comfortable with mess and confusion. You should become comfortable with things that work even when you don’t understand why and cannot see the outcome during the process. Trust is key
This is a fascinating Ted Talk about creativity done by Julie Burstein, author of Spark: how creativity works. In the book, Burstein investigates the nature of creativity and how the 'gifted' creatives find inspiration in the small, mundane details. It's what they do AFTER they discover a spark - the process they use to turn embers of inspiration into roaring, sustained fires that is truly fascinating. Good book!
Wishing you a creative week!
xoxo Lady Katherine