Life and Spiritual Coaching

November 19, 2008

Being Creative

Filed under: Communications — by Donna Ritter @ 1:46 pm
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Here are 9 practices I personally use to help me in ‘cultivating’ creativity.

Practice:

  • Being Relaxed – Take a moment to do something that makes you happy; that brings you joy; that you love; that centers you. Meditate, take a walk, go for a swim, read something that puts you in a good mood, journaling – writing down your thoughts (this can be so rewarding!).
  • Gratitude – Thinking about all things you are grateful for produces a positive energy flow and vibration. As you feel the love in your heart for all the wonderful blessings and gifts in your life, you will instantly relax and feel all warm-and-fuzzy inside. In that moment of warmth and love, you are open to creative energy.
  • Tickling Your Imagination – Imagination is highly visual. I’ve found it helpful to practice seeing vivid images with my eyes closed.
    • Try it. Close your eyes, and imagine that you are in a scene, any scene. Okay – pick your ideal scene, practice seeing the details of your environment in this scene. See the colors, the textures, touch something. What does it feel like? What do you hear? What do you smell? What is the temperature like? Etc.
  • Being In the Moment – Every outstanding musician or artist will tell you that when they are creating great music or art, there are no thoughts, they are completely in the moment, and experiencing flow. Athletes call this ‘being in the zone‘. You can practice present moment awareness by giving full attention to whatever you are doing: eating, washing dishes, making your bed, etc. Meditation helps tremendously. The book “The Power of Now” by Eckhart Tolle is also highly recommended.
  • Being Inspired – Practice seeing beautiful things that moves you emotionally. Flip through a book containing thought provoking images, go to an art gallery, read something inspirational, talk to someone who calms you.
  • Drawing – This may sounds funny, but one of the effective ways to practice getting in touch with your creative side is to start drawing. Drawing forces you to see things differently. I highly recommend the book “Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain” and the workbook by Betty Edwards. This book was designed for people who has never drawn before. I first heard about this book from a psychology textbook. I have gained much from its insights.
  • Seeing Alternatives – Be curious. Practice asking yourself how to do something differently. When seeing the solution to a problem, ask yourself, “What are some alternative ways to doing this?“. Develop the mental attitude that “there is always another way” even when alternatives seem ‘impossible’.
  • Being Open – Never shut down any idea that comes your way, do not make judgments about it. Appreciate any idea that comes to you, even ones that seem “stupid” or “obvious”. This way, you encourage more creative ideas to surface from your being.
  • Think on Paper – With a bunch of loose paper (or notebook, I prefer loose paper so you don’t feel restricted that you have to keep the page ‘straight’ and organized.), start jotting ideas down. Write everything down that comes to your head: random words, phrases, ideas, thoughts… sometimes you might want to circle things and draw lines to connect ideas. When an inspiration hits, follow it. If you suddenly have a different idea, jot it down somewhere on the page or in a new page. This is how I construct blog articles. I start with ideas and points, sometimes really crappy points at the start, and once I fall into ‘flow‘, the article will take shape before my eyes .
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October 14, 2008

Boost Your Creativity and Make it Work for You!

Filed under: Life Coaching — by Donna Ritter @ 12:18 pm
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Boost Your Creativity and Make it Work for You

Sabrina Schleicher, Ph.D.


There are times when it can feel like you have simply run out of good ideas. This is the classical “writer’s block,” and you don’t have to be a writer to experience this phenomenon. No matter what you do for a living, your creativity can be one of your best resources. What can you do to boost your creativity when you feel as though you just can’t access that part of yourself? Take advantage of the mind-body connection to boost your creativity. There are a number of simple things you can do to clear your head and get your creative juices flowing.

 

Exercise. Step away from your project and go for a walk, or head to the gym. Exercise promotes the flow of oxygen to your brain. Exercise also releases stress-relieving endorphins and decreases the levels of cortisol (i.e., stress hormone) in your body. All of these positive side effects of exercise will help to get your creativity going again.

 

Get Plenty of Sleep. Be sure you are getting sufficient sleep. In our fast-paced world, it’s easy to short-change yourself on sleep. We need at least eight hours of sleep to be fully alert and functioning at our best. It is impossible to come up with your best ideas when you are sleep deprived. 

 

Get away. Take a vacation or mini-vacation for a change of pace and scenery. Do something totally outside of your ordinary routine. This will help you to see the world differently and get a fresh perspective. If now isn’t a good time for a vacation to the Bahamas, take a mini-vacation. This can be as simple as a 5-minute break to close your eyes and use imagery to evoke a relaxing scene in your mind.

 

Practice Relaxation, Meditation, or Yoga. Inducing a relaxed state of mind and clearing your mind of clutter will help you focus in the present moment. You will be surprised at the creativity that returns to you once your mind has been freed of the clutter of your daily thoughts and worries.

 

Schedule for Creativity. Notice the days and times of day you are most likely to be creative and have good ideas. Rearrange your schedule to best utilize those times for your creative endeavors. Treat this like an appointment with yourself. Do not let other matters intrude on this important time.

 

GET Coaching. Coaching is an excellent way to get your creativity flowing again. As a coach, I love to work with creative clients. Even the most creative person sometimes feels stuck, or has difficulty implementing creative ideas. Having a supportive coach to assist you in brainstorming and developing specific plans to implement creative ideas can move you much further along than when you work alone.

 

An example that comes to mind is a woman with whom I recently talked to about business ideas. For several years, she has had the idea of marketing her creative therapeutic interventions to other therapists, but she has never had a plan for moving forward with her business. After just a few conversations, she has developed a website and products she is marketing to therapists, parents, and teachers. The support of a coach can be of tremendous value as you take action to put your creativity to work! 

 

 

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