When I tell people I work as a Creative Mentor almost everyone responds saying “I wish I could be creative”. Some say “I’m the least imaginative person ever” and most say “I can’t even draw a stick man let alone create!”
Little do they know that within each and everyone is a deep well of creativity just waiting to be drawn from (metaphorically and with a crayon as well!) The access point is far easier (and more playful) than you might think!
So you want in? Then let me share these creativity boosters with you here and now!
#1. STOP TRYING so hard and just play more. Whenever we try hard at anything we get in our heads and overthink things which kills our joy and tightens us up. Our thinking becomes narrow and we lose access to that wider perspective that comes when we let go and get into flow. Playful kids, the little ones you see lost in their imaginal world, are your best examples of this. Let yourself play at whatever lights you up in the moment with no big plan and the ‘just right’ ideas and inspirations will drop into your awareness seemingly from nowhere.
#2. NOTICE EVERYTHING (still taking your hints from children here) and when something pulls your attention let that ‘speak’ to you. Like today I had the impulse to play a random Ted talk while I painted and noticed that it contained the exact information about brain functioning I had been wondering about the night before. My questions were answered and then some as my Youtube was set to autoplay and the next two talks that followed also spoke to specific topics I had been curious about and wanting to research and form a Creative Workshop around. The information flowing to me as I painted only sparked my creativity more!
#3. GET CURIOUS (and yet another childlike quality here…notice a theme?) so that when unplanned situations/people show up outta the blue you greet them with ease and wonder asking “Wonder why this showed up for me now?” Shifting into curiousity moves you out of reacting and butting up against what appears to be a “problem in the plan”. It’s such a joyful flow stopper (and a creativity quelcher) if you react and try to control everything around you. If you can welcome the answers that will stream through when you stay open and inquire, you will not only expand your knowledge but access a wider range of possibilities by letting others in to co-create with you. Some of the most random people I would have never connected with showed up ‘outta the blue’ and ended up bringing me to new places of discovery that I wouldn’t have found with out them. Be open because often those challenges are nudges for us toward finding unseen solutions.
What people forget is that everything we see around us – chairs, cars, clothes, and the works showed up when people, in a curious place, took notice of what they would prefer to see and didn’t get all stuck in the tangle of worry-focused thoughts in their head. Instead, they got clear and committed to discovering another way of seeing a problem.
We’re all very capable of doing this in any facet of our lives – work, relationships, art, you name it! – and if you need guidance, just swing by your neighbourhood playground and watch how children roll! A reminder that it’s inside of us all if we just stop trying so hard and trust that we still have that playful creative ability available to us all the time.
So now it’s your turn? What helps you to be your most childlike creative version of you? Share and spark our creativity!