Have you ever said this? “I’m just not inspired to be creative.” I’ve caught myself saying that a time or two during my creative journey. It’s wonderful to have inspiration, but inspiration is not necessary to be creative. If you’re waiting for inspiration to hit you over the head then keep waiting my friend.
I’m not going to say that it’s not going to happen, because it might, but I will say that you might be waiting a long, LONG time. Do you have months, or even years to wait until a creative idea hits you? Most of us don’t. When you wait for inspiration to happen to you you’re essentially putting yourself in a powerless position. Instead of being a partner with your creativity you are waiting for some outside force to bestow inspiration upon you. Although the specifics of inspiration are very magical and intangible, the surest way to be inspired and find a little inspiration is to nurture your creativity.
Allowing your creativity to bloom comes from a myriad of things and it doesn’t involve being holed up in your house for days on end. Below I’ve written 60 ideas that I’m committing to in the new year to let my creativity bloom. Some of them I’m very good at but there are others that I’m working to implement in a more meaningful way.
I invite you to choose the ideas that resonate with you, you’ll know what they are because those are the ideas your entire being will say YES to. Also choose the ideas where you feel a wall of resistance building because those are the ideas that will challenge you and give you a tremendous amount of growth.
So here are 60 ideas to let your creativity bloom.
1. Write down all your ideas, all the time, no matter how silly they sound.
2. Find time to meditate and quiet your mind.
3. Exercise, exercise, exercise.
4. Start accepting invitations you receive to creative events.
5. Practice and make a commitment to nurture your craft.
6. Be a student and take a class. When was the last time you actually took a class in your field? It doesn’t matter if you have a PhD commit to always learning in your field.
7. Be a teacher and mentor someone else. No matter where you are in your career we all have something to give.
8. Reward yourself for the work you’ve done whether you think it’s good or bad.
9. Start seeing the beauty in all the work you create.
10. GO SOLO. This is actually #1! Many people have a problem with being alone, but making time just for you is important in allowing your creativity to bloom.
11. Connect with nature.
12. Don’t talk as much and cultivate the art of listening.
13. Be observant of your surroundings and don’t miss the little things.
14. Beautify your creative space by adding plants, artwork or whatever else makes you feel happy and inspired.
15. Create a creative schedule and stick to it.
16. Do yoga.
17. Commit to finding happiness and joy in life. You don’t have to be a tortured artist it’s all about how you look at the world. It’s okay, to put on rose-colored glasses.
18. Be gentle with yourself, because berating yourself and what you create is a surefire way to keep your creativity locked in.
19. Allow your creativity to flow at its own pace.
20. Find a cause that’s bigger than yourself. When I wrote my movie Click it started out as a romantic comedy but then the story evolved and became bigger than me. I’ll admit it was scary, but it made me grow as an artist.
21. Put creativity first! Make it your priority to be creative and the first thing you do in the morning even if it means waking up earlier.
22. Don’t be afraid to be different.
23. Be spontaneous! The pictures that you see are from an impromptu photo session I did at the beach shot by the amazing Gintaras Korsakas. It was so much fun playing in the water on the beach and I felt like a kid again. To view the other pictures check out the Facebook gallery entitled Ocean Series.
24. Say positive affirmations, especially when you’re feeling negative.
25. Interact with other creative people.
26. Believe in yourself.
27. Ignore the critics.
28. Pay attention to constructive criticism.
29. Let your work see the light of day!
30. Let go. Especially let go of the idea of anything being perfect.
31. Stop being so serious and let yourself be silly. I’m seriously one of the goofiest people ever. I dare you to do something absolutely silly preferably in public.
32. Read books especially ones that challenge you.
33. Believe in the impossible.
35. Take consistent action every day.
36. Don’t worry about the how. Even if your idea will cost a lot of money focus on the possibilities and focus on creating it.
37. Celebrate the success of other artists no matter your point of view of them.
38. Drink plenty of water. Dehydration kills creativity.
39. Start from where you are. It doesn’t matter where that is, just start.
40. Get a good night’s sleep.
41. Take a break. Living in Los Angeles I know many people who don’t ever leave because they’re afraid they’ll miss something, but taking a break is important to prevent burn out and rejuvenate.
42. Travel. It can be a longer trip or a day trip.
43. Learn about different cultures not only thru reading books but by speaking to people. If you live in a large metropolitan area that’s fairly easy but if not you can meet all sorts of people on the internet or by traveling (see #40).
44. Explore. That could mean going to different neighborhoods in your area or going on a scavenger hunt.
45. Be interested. This means on a small and big scale. Be interested in what’s going on in your home, your neighborhood, your community, your country, your world.
46. Connect with your artistic soulmates. These are people you feel get you and you get too. It doesn’t mean you agree all the time but it does mean that you respect one another and give honest constructive criticism.
47. Deal with your issues. In order to go deeper artistically you must face the issues that have been holding you back.
48. Commit to self-growth.
49. Admit your deepest desires to yourself. If you’re not honest with yourself it will be virtually impossible to be honest in your work.
50. Spend time with children because they can be creative with a cardboard box or without one. A good friend of mine who went to Africa to build homes and told me that since the kids had no toys they made up the most creative games with rocks.
51. Visualize success.
52. Turn off the TV.
53. Put your money where your creativity is. Check out where you’re spending your money. If it’s on expensive dinners, clothes, and lattes ask yourself if it’s keeping you from funding a project or taking a class.
54. Finish what you started. I once read a powerful story about Tyler Perry who said that he went from homeless to being worth close to one billion dollars in 10 years by making a commitment to finish EVERY SINGLE project he started. Imagine how applying this concept can change your life.
55. Focus on one project at a time. I’m definitely the queen of multi-tasking but when you focus your energy on one project you accomplish more more quickly.
56. Be a pioneer. I recently saw Halle Berry speak at the premiere of her film “Frankie and Alice”. She talked about her journey as an actress was about accepting her role as a pioneer and finding a way even there seemed to be no way.
57. Know there’s enough for everyone. In many artistic communities the idea that there isn’t enough to go around is huge. It creates lots of unnecessary competition, but the truth is there’s enough for every one. Even if others don’t believe that know it is true.
58. Go back in time. Read great works of literature and listen to music (right now I’m going through the 20’s-60’s) to keep you inspired.
59. Show up. The power of showing up is huge and it boils down to keeping your commitments. This year I got an assignment simply on the basis that I was the one who showed up. Not showing up is one of the ways we sabotage ourselves and our dreams so do it.
60. Eat foods in their natural form. When I changed the way I ate years ago I literally was on a creative cloud nine and could go on forever. Personally I love making my power green juice in the morning that’s loaded with fruits and veggies.
So that’s the list. I truly hope that you found something here that resonates with your soul. If you’re interested check out part 1 of my creativity series How to Access Your Creativity.
Please leave a comment below and let me know what you think and share your thoughts and ideas with the community. And of course please like the post and share this with your friends on Facebook and Twitter.