Wish You Were More Creative? How to Increase Creativity
You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have. — Maya Angelou
Creativity is much more common than we realize. It is not just for the arts. To create means to bring something into existence that did not exist before.
This means the relationships we have are a creation we made. Every conversation. Every thought and action of every day is your creation. We create every aspect of our life based on the choices that we make.
Because no one has ever had your experience. There are shared experiences, yes, but they are experienced differently based on our understanding. Which was also created by the things we read, watch, and focus our attention.
Creativity is not some elusive muse that comes and goes as she pleases.
Just as our choices become habits and patterns, creativity also follows a pattern. Each project will cycle through different phases.
Each project has a different timeline, just as varied as the different regions on earth have distinct climates.
The really fun part is that there can be one singular project, or many projects, depending on your preference. My brain prefers to juggle through numerous projects, and it works so well understanding that there are different phases of creation.
How to Harness It
This morning I was having a conversation with a friend that sparked some amazing connections. Things were just clicking.
We were talking about ideas and creativity and writing. I mentioned that I’m working on another book about creativity and the connection with elements. She mentioned how things usually tie into seasons and she’s been thinking a lot about seasons. And being me, I connected it to patterns and cycles and with all the research I’ve been doing on creativity and elements.
So I’m just going to give a brief summary because this is going to be a whole section of the book I’m sure! I’m still fine-tuning the ideas, but I can see it.
So creativity has 4 seasons, just like there are 4 elements. We know the 4 seasons, we know the 4 elements, but the cool thing is how creativity not only connects to each of these but flows along the lines of the same pattern.
First, we have spring.
Spring is obviously associated with a lot of WATER (there’s the element) and growth. In creativity, this is a time for ideas. They flow like water, they grow and develop.
Then there is summer.
It’s hot, the sun is up longer. With more time in the day, we tend to get more things done. This is the time when we have a FIRE under us to get more done. It’s a time for action, implementing the ideas that grew during the spring.
Then comes autumn.
This is traditionally seen as the time of the harvest. We reap what we sow, and enjoy the richness of the EARTH. We receive payment for all the hard work we have put in. It is still a period of work to gather things in, it’s just a different type of work.
Finally, we have winter.
A time of rest and recovery, yes. But oh so much more than that. It’s a time where we suddenly do not have all of our days and time filled to the brim, and days are shorter. It’s like there is all of this space (AIR). We start off with a celebration, then the rest just kind of drags on in January and February, right? As far as creativity is concerned, it is a time for play and trying new things, for filling that space. This is the period where we commonly have writer’s block or creative lulls.
Don’t fight it- use it! Creative lulls are a time for play and exploration. Because when we try new things and have new experiences… it leads us back to spring and a new flow of ideas.
BUT, that’s not it!
These are the seasons of the earth, right? So if we take a step back and look at the globe as a whole, it might be spring in the northern hemisphere, but fall in the southern. There is more than one cycle happening.
Which for my and my busy brain with all of my projects, this is a fabulous revelation. I can be in the fall of one book project with the launch of my next book coming up, but am in the spring of my fiction novel and the summer of this project on creation and the elements.
I certainly have a lot more I could say on the topic (I obviously have a whole new book planned), but piecing this together with the seasons and seeing the cycle and pattern that comes up in our lives just has me absolutely buzzing with excitement.
Partially because if you have read any of my past work, it has built a solid foundation for these principles. Up a few lines, I mentioned not fighting it, but using it.
I wrote my first book after researching the effects of Tourette syndrome on communication. Fascinating stuff. I found that this incredibly awkward situation I was facing day in and day out was a beneficial tool if used correctly.
Tourette syndrome is something that most people are ashamed of and fight against what their body is trying to do in order to hide it.
I was tired of fighting against myself. It is exhausting. I was tired of myself being my biggest enemy and what was holding me back.
When really all it is, is a tool that I just didn’t know how to use correctly. The same goes for anything that I have in my life. I’m stubborn and for years, people have tried to get rid of this trait. Instead, it is also a tool to be used. I pick and choose when I’m stubborn now. I watch and see how it is going to benefit me.
The same goes for creativity and understanding the cycle that I’m in. Rather than staring at a blank page and blinking cursor for hours on end trying to force myself to come up with something to write, I can allow myself to be in that winter, see my need for rest or new ideas.
I can go play without guilt.
When I’m in a season of having all the ideas come, I don’t have to feel scatterbrained. I write them all down until I can move into the summer of each of these projects.
Some seasons may be longer than others. Some may be shorter. And because Mother Nature can be funny, sometimes you can bounce between all 4 seasons in one day. But life is going to follow this natural flow and progression.
I’m seriously so excited to write this next book. But maybe you wanna go back and read my others first, they lay a great framework for all of this.
Understand that life is full of tools for us to use. We are the ones who make the choice as to how each tool is used and create meaning from each experience.
There we go creating again.
So Now What?
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Also, be sure to check out my books Awkwardly Strong, Tragically Strong, and Fearfully Strong for more information on how specifically to utilize these tools.