Journaling by the fire
Creativity,  Uncategorized

5 Ideas to Spark Your Creativity

On days when you are feeling a creative block, it can be hard to get your imagination flowing. Here are 5 ideas that can spark your creativity.

Brainstorming Creative Ideas

During my sabbatical to recover from burnout from my job as a Pharmacist, I’ve been exploring my creativity. I’ve been experimenting with many new creative avenues. By diving in head first, following my intuition, letting go of my fear, and doing what sparks my interest I’ve been able to experience creativity in all sorts of new ways in my life.

Before I quit my job, I brainstormed a list of things that I might like to do on my sabbatical. It included both things that I enjoy doing and new things that I might like to try during my time off. My list was 4 pages long! It confirmed to me how much work had been consuming my life. I’ve used my list as a starting point when I want to do something creative and it has helped me think of things to try when I’m having a creative block.

I encourage you to make a list of your own. Don’t sensor your list as you write. Just write down anything that comes to you. This is not a “to do” list. Don’t feel pressured that you actually have to do all of the things on the list! It is just a brainstorming session to help you tune in to all the things you enjoy. You can add to your list or change your list anytime!

To get you started, here is a list of 5 things that I’ve tried. Some of the things rejuvenate me and get my energy flowing. Others are ways I release my creative energy. I hope this list jump starts your imagination and gets you out there creating. I encourage you to pick one thing from your list and go do it this week. Have fun!

1. Journaling

Writing gives me a slow, quiet time to process things going on in my life and to tune in to what matters most to me. Because of this, I have committed to journaling daily. It helps me process complex emotions and allows me to let go of unnecessary things in my life. When I let go of of those things, there is room for my creativity to blossom because it is no longer blocked by negative and irrelevant thoughts.

Journaling is the perfect place to write down any new ideas that come to me without fear of judgement. I’ve sparked so many creative ideas this way! In my journal I can brainstorm to my hearts content. As the days go on,  I have the freedom to refine my idea or drop them altogether. Journaling helps me define what I want to pursue in life and what to let go.

My favorite journaling spot!

2. Take an art class

Taking an art class can really spark your creativity. You may learn a completely new art form, learn new tips and tricks, or meet new inspiring people!

This summer I took a free art class at the local botanical gardens on a Sunday afternoon. A very talented local artist led us through the steps of creating our own piece of mixed media art. It was so much fun and I learned so much! 

A few weeks later, I was even inspired to create my own mixed media piece.

My first mixed media art piece, created at the art class.

3. Try a new craft

Trying a new craft can be so much fun. It pushes you to get outside your comfort zone, builds confidence, and gets your creative juices flowing! 

For instance, I’ve been saving wine corks and pinning craft ideas about ways to use them for at least a year. But I’ve been to scared to actually try any of the ideas. This summer I decided it was time to finally try one of them! 

So, I got brave and taught myself how to make cork earrings. I bought a basic kit for making jewelry and taught myself how to install the hardware onto the corks I prepared. The corks were sliced, sanded, and then decoupaged with paper. I chose a neutral paper so that the corks still looked very natural. In the background you can see part of the mixed media art I made at home after my art class.

My first time making a craft out of cork. I think these turned out pretty good for a beginner!

4. Creative Writing Class

As a pharmacist, I’ve had a lot of training in technical writing, but rarely get to write anything “for fun”. Of course, I have my daily journal writing, but I haven’t tried creative writing.  

To push my writing to a new level, I attended a free creative writing class at the library. The purpose was to learn about and practice creative writing such as you would read in a novel or poem. There were about 20 participants. We started by discussing a writing prompt and then spent about 20 minutes free writing. After that, participants could share what they wrote to get constructive feedback from the instructors and other class mates. We then wrote for another 20 minutes and shared again at the end.

Hearing the variety of stories that people came up with from the same starting point really sparked my imagination! I was amazed at how different each person’s writing was. They were all great and it was encouraging to see so much creative freedom in action. 

This was one of my favorite activities of the month. It energized my imagination and inspired me to try new things with my writing. 

5. Pick up your old instrument and play it

 

Proud to be in uniform playing my horn again!

Music has always been a big part of my life. I started piano when I was 8 years old and played trumpet from 5th grade through college. Being involved in music is how I met my husband and how I’ve met some of my best friends in life. Now as an adult, I rarely play music.

During my sabbatical, I had been experimenting a lot with writing and visual arts to express my creativity but had not yet played any music. So this summer my husband and I pulled out our trumpets and marched with the Troopers Alumni Corp. The Troopers Drum and Bugle Corp is a competitive Drum Corp in the marching arts that has been around for 60+ years. It had been 20 years since we marched in the Corp!

It was such a blast meeting up with old friends, creating music, and being around so much positive energy! We even had an alumni member from the first years of the Troopers! 

Creativity Matters

My experiences have affirmed for me that the creative arts, no matter the form, are an important aspect of our lives that should not be ignored. No matter what stage of life we are in, there is always room for the arts. Just get out there and express yourself in whatever medium you are drawn to at the time. 

I hope these ideas helped spark your creativity and give you courage and inspiration to go try something new.

I’d love to hear about something you’ve tried that sparked your creativity. Send me a comment!