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How to Summon Creativity Whenever You Need It
By Donna Best on June 26, 2015
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What does it mean to be ‘creative on command?’ To me, it means being able to turn your creativity on like a light switch; whenever you need it, it’s there. You always have direct access to your muse.
Now many people don’t consider themselves creative. But creativity is innate, which means it lives inside of all of us.
The only difference between people who are super creative and people who say they don’t have a creative bone in their bodies, is the super creative people made their creativity intentional, by putting a focus on it and being deliberate about it.
How Creative On Command Came About
Back in 2008, I was a few years out of college and I just really wanted to be the writer that I had dreamed of being for such a long time. And no matter how hard I tried, nothing was working. I felt stuck all the time, I felt blocked. I would basically wake up in the morning and tell myself, “I’m going to write today; today’s going to be the day I start that book I keep talking about.”
And then I would go through my whole day, and the end of the day comes and there I am feeling guilty because I didn’t write. Berating myself and saying, “I’m never going to make this happen.”
I had to figure out what was going on, because I kept asking myself–why am I stuck all the time?
So I really started digging into it and looking at what could be stopping me or what could be blocking me. And all different things came up—things you would not even think of! Like procrastination, fear, negative thoughts, poor eating habits, not exercising.
All of these things are basically what I’ve come to call my Creative on Command philosophy.
There are things that you can do to make it so that your creativity is always flowing and always available to you.
What’s Stopping You Right Now
You may be wondering, “Why am I not creative on command right now? What’s stopping me?” And to that I would say the number one thing that stops you from having direct access to your creative muse is: junk.
Junk foods, junk thoughts, junk habits Junk will prevent you from accessing your creativity whenever you want to.
As a creative being, what you eat, what you tell yourself, and the things you do every single day–those are the things that are going to make or break your creative process. All of those things have profound effects on you.
You are the core source of your creativity, which means you have to nourish that part of yourself if you want to be Creative on Command, if you want to have the energy that you need to be creative. You have to think about yourself:
- What are you feeding yourself?
- What are you telling yourself?
- What habits do you have that hinder your creativity?
You want to make sure you’re doing things that are going to fuel your creativity and your energy, and not take away from it. So when you’re feeling creatively blocked or stuck, it likely means that you’re not nourishing yourself, your body or your creativity, the way that you should be.
Creativity is a basic skill that we all have, but it’s very easy to get blocked because there’s so much junk in our lives, both internally and externally. Not only can things like what you eat and what you tell yourself block you, but also external things like stress, your job, the people around you driving you crazy—all of these things can tie into making you feel stuck.
Be Creative On Command In 3 Simple Steps
I have a three-step process for getting you unblocked and starting to nourish your creativity. The three steps are:
- Clear the clutter
- Marinate on it (and get inspired)
- Jump-start yourself
Step One: Clear the Clutter
You need to find ways to de-junk yourself. This is how you’re going to have more access to your creativity—getting rid of the junk. You can do this by:
- Eating healthy—feeding yourself foods that nourish your body and your mind
- Moving your body more—being a couch potato is going to cause your energy to feel stagnant. So do activities where you can move your body.It doesn’t always have to be going to the gym for 30 minutes. It could be taking a walk, dancing, doing an exercise video. Or it could be chasing your kid around the playground for 30 minutes. Something that’s going to get you moving.Bodies are made to move and energy that flows is energy that moves.
- Clearing the mind noise–tools like morning pages, meditations and journaling can really help you to get control of your thoughts so they stop running wild with negativity. Once the ‘ick’ is gone, you’ll have more direct access to your creative muse and your inspiration.Because the stuff that blocks you–that gets in your way of actually hearing the creative ideas and hearing the messages that are inside you–it’s all gone.
Step Two: Marinate On It (And Get Inspired)
Kind of like marinating meat, creative ideas get better with time. Your ideas need marination time.
So take a break every now and then. Take a walk, play, have fun, observe. Really find ways to let your ideas have the space that they need to incubate and grow into bigger and more fully developed creative projects.
Doing this will fill your idea well.
If you want to be Creative on Command–to be able to have an idea as soon as you need it; a problem arises and you can solve it immediately, or someone asks you for an idea and automatically you have an answer–the way to do that is to make sure your creative well is always full.
And that means giving back to yourself. It means taking time to take care of yourself. It means playing, relaxing, having fun, doing things that are going to feed the different parts of yourself that you need to nourish so your creative part comes alive.
If you have the need to feel inspired, in control and more organized than you might want to try The Get It Done, Writer’s Tookit CLICK HERE!, which is an ebook/audio CD combo set that teaches writers how to become more disciplined and how to find the time to write. Setting goals and knowing exactly what direction you are going in with your project with a progression of deadlines can definitely help alleviate writing anxiety.
Step Three: Jump-Start Yourself
It can be hard to sit down and immediately get into a writing session. A lot of times you’re coming from work, you’re tired, maybe you just had dinner with the family and you’re feeling a little exhausted or had a long day, you have a lot of things on your mind, whatever. It’s very hard to go from that space to writing.
The easy thing to do is to just say, “I’m not going to do it. I’m going to skip today; I’m not going to write.”
But the better thing to do is to jump-start yourself, because a simple jump-start can be enough of a spark to get you thinking in that creative way you need for your writing session (or whatever creative session you’re going to have).
You can easily jump-start yourself by using a writing exercise.
An example can be: write about your first day of school. You had a first day of school experience—what was it like? What did it sound like, what did it look like, what was it like? What did you experience? Write about that for 10 minutes.
Doing this will get you in a thinking and creating mindset, and it will also get you in a writing mindset. Which then makes it easy to jump from the exercise right into your writing session. You’re already in a flow, you’re already being creative, so you can keep that momentum going.
If you lack inspiration then you might want to try the advice and writing hacks that are suggested in Our Get It Done Writer’s Toolkit CLICK HERE! This is a ebook/audio CD comb that can teach you how to brainstorm as well as overcome writer’s block and procrastination. It will also help you stay on schedule and meet writing goals so you can finish that project!
Now you’re going to do a little brainstorming.
I’ve shared a lot of ideas in this article for ways you can move yourself toward being more Creative on Command. Take two minutes and brainstorm a list of all the things you think you could do right now to start nourishing yourself and your creativity more. Whatever ideas came to you while reading this article, write them down.
Don’t judge any of the ideas, just make a list.
Now look at your list, and circle one or two things that you want to try this week. This is going to be your action plan for becoming creative on command.
Using your list, every week pick one or two items off of it, or every couple weeks, whatever feels right for you. Try to add them into your life.
This post by Jennifer Blanchard was originally published with the title How to Be Creative On Command at http://jenniferblanchard.net/how-to-be-creative-on-command/.