Creative teachers aren’t afraid to take risks. They search for inspiration in even the most mundane of places. They ask themselves silly questions and strive to find inventive answers. They play. They experiment. They explore. These teachers flip problems around to see what’s underneath, then hope it’s not chewed gum.
You are so creative in your lesson plans, with your bulletin boards, even in the clip art you choose for your worksheets. But when is the last time you were creative just for you?
Creativity is life-making. It’s a way to believe we can change the world. It relieves our stress and invigorates our imagination. It’s a route to clarity or an outlet for frustrations. It brings peace and unlimited excitement.
It’s time to reclaim your own creativity and find some self-care and reinvigoration along the way.
So many people believe they just aren’t creative. That creativity is something people are born with or that you steal from Pinterest. But those people are wrong. Creativity can have so many constructs. It’s art, it’s play, it’s fun.
Creativity connects you with nature. It slows you down while taking you on an adventure. It puts your stamp on the world. And, above all, it reminds you to create more.
It’s true — even the most creative of all creatives sometimes find themselves holding a bucket only to find the well empty. Everyone has experienced the dreaded creative block. The key is to remind yourself of your favorite artistry and reignite some of your creative flow. Follow some of these simple suggestions jump-start that creative spark.
1. Do something differently just for the sake of doing something different.
So many times we find ourselves following the same routines, looking for the same answers, drinking the same kind of coffee — two creams and one sugar. We fall into these routines and life is comfortable. We are content. And we forget to look for other kinds of answers. Heck, we even forget to ask different kinds of questions.
Choose something different. It could be as simple as having tea instead of coffee. Or it could be as limitless as your imagination. Instead of following the same routine, start asking different questions and find your creativity in something new.
2. Enjoy the holidays.
Holidays always inspire some serious creative decorating. Sticking plastic bones in the ground so they seem to be emerging from the leaf-covered ground. Handprint turkeys with multi-colored feathers. Pine boughs wrapped in ribbon and placed on display. Eggs covered in pastel colors and sparkles…heck yes!
Let the holidays guide your creativity. Decorate with flair and instinct. Find unique patterns or silly pictures. Choose an area of your home that you will decorate — for the holidays or not — and let your creativity take charge.
3. Take yourself on a walk.
Get up and go out. Not only is fresh air good for you, but Stanford researchers found walking can significantly increase creativity. On average, creative and inventive thought improves by 60% when walking is involved. Inspiration can be found as you stroll, but you’ll also find more creative inspiration after the walk. Take a moment to let your mind and your feet wander as you regain creative clarity.
4. Be young again.
Remember the smell of crayons? The stickiness of Elmer’s glue? Think back to when you were a child and everything was about your imagination. At the age of five, we have 80% of our creative potential. The main difference between then and now is that you allowed yourself to have fun. To play. To imagine. You had an idea and the freedom to make it whatever you wanted.
So put yourself back into your youth. Try some finger painting. Sculpt with Play-Doh. Fashion a hat out of a newspaper. Do some origami. Build a pillow fort on your bed. Remember those activities you loved when you were little and let go. Creativity will follow.
5. Review your Pinterest boards.
We are often inspired by others. And that’s A-OK. Pinterest has become a household name in its easy and succinct way of organizing and storing ideas. But how often do you revisit them?
Scroll through your boards and remember why you pinned them in the first place. Try to make some of the artistry you found inspiring, and be open to the creative moments you can find there.
6. Sign on for a challenge.
There are so many challenges out there: topic challenges, 30-day, 90-day, and 100-day challenges and more. Find one that challenges your creativity.
7. Do something boring.
Sort those socks. Do the ironing. Put the dishes away. Take the time to complete those boring tasks and you may find your creativity coming to the rescue.
A study from the University of Central Lancashire states that one of boredom’s positive outcomes could be increased creativity. It’s believed that as we are completing something mundane, our mind begins to daydream. Daydreaming allows us to imagine and create our own entertainment. Something that can also increase creativity through the rest of the day.
8. Turn off all the screens.
Take the time to turn off the screens and listen to the silence. Let your eyes rest from the glare. Let your mind wander and explore.
Televisions, computers, and phones all take part in stumping our creativity. Your mind is being fed information. Images bombard your eyes, and the mind doesn’t need to think. Taking the time away from all screens will increase your brain’s ability to think on its own and spur your creative energy.
Creativity exists within us all. And it’s important to remember to be creative for ourselves more often. Cue up your creativity and watch as those benefits come trickling in.
Ashley is an award-winning copywriter and content expert with more than a decade of proven results for national and local clients. From brainstorming high-end conceptual content to styling sentences that engage and convert, she’s got a knack for shattering the status quo. When she’s not in full-on writing mode, she’s hanging out with her rascal of a puppy and discussing the plausibility of unicorns with her 8-year-old daughter.