Besides running around taking pictures of this glorious snow we’ve been having, what all have I been up to? In fact, I have been pleasantly busy.
The past several weeks have been filled with home projects, client projects, and a healthy round of spring cleaning. I am also happy to share that I have been writing more and more each day, and I’m starting to scratch down fresh poems, and new ideas for stories and articles.
So how can you breathe some fresh air into your creativity? Here are a few suggestions from my sandbox:
1) Get back to basics
Over the past few months, I’ve been setting aside opportunities to work with pen and paper again. Journaling, letting writing, and drafting are all activities that have transitioned almost exclusively to wordprocessing since I finished school a few years ago.
When writing with pen and paper I find myself deliberately slowing my thoughts, processing my ideas, and pacing my writing in order to ensure that my handwriting stays legible. (If I try to think and write as fast as I type, the whole thing is a nightmare to reread!)
2) Try something new
Teach yourself a new language. Take a class, take a trip, take a walk—anything to get yourself out of your routine, and into something new. It needn’t be drastic… do you take a daily walk? Have you ever found yourself, for whatever reason, walking your daily path in reverse? What do you see that you don’t normally notice?
3) Set a goal
Pick something as a goal – it doesn’t matter whether or not this is related to your work, just pick any doable thing. It could be as big as “finish my masterpiece” or as accessible as “fix the leak in the bathroom sink.”
Now make it happen. Setting yourself small goals and then knocking them out will help build your momentum on other projects. Besides, it fells good to get stuff done.
4) Open a window
Did I mention that I’ve been cleaning? This is no idle, ho-hum, did-the-dishes kind of cleaning… I’ve been reducing, reusing, recycling, and throwing-over-my-shoulder-into-the-dumpster. It feels great, and it brings so much clarity.
If you’re in your office, or home, or home office, or truck for that matter, take a look around your personal space. Look at your desk, your room, your floor… unless you’ve just finished your spring cleaning, something could definitely use your attention.
Pick something – a desk, a drawer, a room – now shut down your computer, and go to it. Clean it all the way, and see how you feel. Just one little pocket of cleared space can open up a huge amount of energy and focus in your brain.
(By the by, if you have usable stuff that you need to get rid of, don’t throw it away, check out FreeCycle and help give your stuff a new life.)
5) Have some fun
Whether or not you want to try any of the above suggestions, I think we can always benefit from pushing off the work and having some fun. You don’t have to procrastinate to do this: plan ahead to get a certain portion of your work out of the way so you can take a day, or an afternoon, and do something enjoyable and DIFFERENT.
How long has it been since you went to an aquarium, or a science center, or a new town? How long has it been since you poked your head outside the window to see if you can hear spring bird songs?
Whether you’re saying hello to spring blossoms, or you’re bundling up to brush snow off your truck, step out into the season and look around. What is the earth saying in your neck of the woods? See if something inspires you.