It can be difficult to manage a full time job and your creative passions. More times than not, your creative passions end up as casual hobbies because the stress of balancing your day job, a family, etc. takes over. I have compiled a list of five tips to help maintain your creative passions in the midst of all the stresses of life.
1. Keep Notes
Write down of all of your creative ideas as soon as they come to mind. Try carrying a small notepad or keeping a journal on your phone or tablet. This way you can always jot down your ideas no matter where you are.
2. Pencil It In
Make time to write. Schedule in a few hours to sit down and just write. Revisit those notes you have been keeping track of or revisit a piece you have been working on for months. Wake up early on your day off, sit down with a cup of coffee, and just write.
3. Limit Your Projects
By narrowing down your writing projects to one or two pieces, you are more likely to finish them. It can be overwhelming when you have five, six, or even seven projects in progress. When your passion becomes overwhelming it can be difficult to motivate yourself to work on any of the projects.
4. Share Your Work
Let your friends and family know that you are working on something new and share it with them. By creating your own personal audience, you create a demand. When your friends and family know that you are working on something, they will more than likely ask about your projects later. The idea that someone is waiting to see the finished product can be motivating.
5. Join a Community
There are often communities, clubs, and/or forums where you can share your work and read others’ work. This creates another audience that is awaiting the final product along with a community to share ideas and spark creativity.
The cold and blustery winter keeps us cooped up in stuffy buildings and puts creativity on the back burner. With spring upon us, it is a perfect time to get your creative juices flowing again! Get outside, open the windows, any way to get some fresh air can be a good jump-start! With fresh air, comes a fresh idea! It is like spring-cleaning for your mind. Let go of all the angst you had this winter and let the fresh air and sunshine bring you new ideas and creative thoughts!
I like going for a run or walk to clear my head and start my writing process. I love stretching and exercising my body, while stretching and clearing my mind. There is nothing better than running through a familiar place and seeing new things. Exposing yourself to nature and new places has obvious effects on your attitude, which inherently factors in to your creativity. I encourage everyone to spend some time going for a walk or jog somewhere you have never been, or even trying to see something new in a familiar place. This does not have to be far away, just the neighborhood across town or even that park down the street! Just be attentive of your surroundings and let the change of seasons bring new ideas!
Do you know what other writers use exercise to jumpstart their imaginations?
Joyce Carol Oates is an avid runner. “I find myself running in a place so intriguing to me, amid houses, or the backs of houses, so mysterious, I’m fated to write about these sights, to bring them to life (as it’s said) in fiction. I’m a writer absolutely mesmerized by places; much of my writing is a way of assuaging homesickness, and the settings my characters inhabit are as crucial to me as the characters themselves. I couldn’t write even a very short story without vividly ‘seeing’ what its characters see.”
Haruki Murakami runs every day and has even written a book about it. “I try not to think about anything special while running. As a matter of fact, I usually run with my mind empty. However, when I run empty-minded, something naturally and abruptly crawls in sometime. That might become an idea that can help me with my writing.” (Haruki Murakami)
What propels your writing? Exercise? Meditation? Dreaming?