Welcome to Ignite Your Creativity’s April 2012 Monthly Spark Newsletter! This month we have some tips for renewing your creativity as well as having our usual book recommendations, monthly writing prompts, free wallpapers, tips, tricks and plenty of inspiration.
Renewing Your Creativity
Spring is a time for renewal, fresh starts and cleaning out the old to make room for the new. As with anything, oftentimes our creative lives need nurturing in order to get our inspiration growing.
How many times have you told yourself that you want to live a more creative life and how many times have you put it on the back burner for one reason or another? I have heard others and, even caught myself using excuse after excuse why creative paths weren’t followed.
Excuse #1 “I am just not creative!”
Everyone is inheritably born creative. When we are children, we don’t see everything as black or white. We use our imagination to create invisible friends, interesting new worlds and when we are unsure of words, we use creativity to express ourselves. As children, if we didn’t know what something was called, we would make up words which held meaning for us. We thrived in our creative worlds until we started school and then much of the creativity we had inside of us was “molded” into what “it should be”. We conformed to fit into the education system that prepared us for careers which oftentimes (but not always) were guided by ‘in the box’, regimented and ordered thinking. Yes, the world does need order but it also needs individuals to think ‘outside the box’, to express their creativity and to stretch the limits of what is possible. As adults we spend time looking for meaning in our lives when what we really need to do is make it for ourselves, just as we did as a child.
“Every child is an artist, the problem is staying an artist when you grow up” ~ Pablo Picasso
Excuse #2 “I am not skilled enough!”
How many times do you tell yourself you are not good enough to pursue your creative path? Very few of us are born with perfect skills, they require nurturing and dedication. Why do we give up on our dreams rather than invest in ourselves? What can we do to increase our skills? If we want to improve our skills, we have to just “do”. Work at it, take courses, read books, find a mentor, whatever it takes. It is important to remember that by taking action towards making our dreams come true, we are saying that “we matter”. Creativity isn’t about perfection, it isn’t a competition, it is about letting yourself go, stretching your mind and making something that is meaningful to you. Even if it takes a while to get your skills to a level you are comfortable, isn’t it better to accomplish something rather than just say “maybe one day”?
“If you hear a voice within you say, ‘You cannot paint,’ then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced”
~ Vincent Van Gogh
Excuse #3 “I don’t have the time!”
In these times, it is easy to let creativity escape us. We work longer hours, commute and sometimes have more obligations than we did ten years ago. Most of our “downtime” is probably spent in front of the television or surfing the net. If you vowed to spend just 15 to 30 minutes a day nurturing your creative abilities, it can be done! Did you know that John Grisham wrote some his novels on his commute into work at a law firm? J.K. Rowling wrote with her children in tow. Where can you carve out some “creativity time”? Write out your daily schedule, and be realistic. How much time do you have waiting while picking up a child from soccer practice? How much time do you spend watching television or surfing the net per week? How long is your train ride to work? How much time do you waste wishing you were following your passion? You’ll be amazed at how much time you find. If you can just invest time into nurturing your passion, you will be motivated to find more and more ways to incorporate creativity into your life.
“Time stays long enough for those who use it.“ – Leonardo Da Vinci
Being creative is invaluable to us as it enhances our lives. Using our creativity is where we find a way to express ourselves; it is a refuge from our everyday stressors. Creating empowers us, builds confidence, helps us communicate and heals us body, mind and spirit. Everyone has a wealth of creative abilities, sometimes we just need to look for them, nurture them and believe in ourselves in order to make our creative souls speak.
“Whether you succeed or not is irrelevant, there is no such thing. Making your unknown known is the important thing.” ~Georgia O’Keefe
Creativity Coaching at Ignite Your Creativity
Google “Creativity Coaching” and you will discover thousands of links to people who dedicate their lives to help everyday people reach their creative potential. Ignite Your Creativity is pleased to announce that we are now offering creativity coaching as one of our services. What are Creativity Coaches? Creativity Coaches are life coaches who focus on one’s creative evolution. Our mission is to help you focus on improving and redefining your future by encouraging you to focus on creative pursuits. Many artists, writers, musicians, and other creative people live with anxieties, doubts, fears, and worries that often hinder their creative minds. A Creativity Coach’s main goal is to assist and guide you to reach your dreams and to help you live the creative life you desire. Ultimately, we endeavor to help our client write, paint, compose, find meaning and happiness where the main goal is to create. We will encourage you to set attainable goals and offer a level of accountability through assignments geared to your specific goal. We will inspire you to think bigger and to work on developing your ideas and energies into meaningful creative projects. Together we will help you identify, understand and work through any creative blocks that stand in the way of your goals. Working with us will enable you to become the creative person, you have always wanted to be. The “Ignite Your Creativity” program consists of:
- 4 weeks of creativity coaching via email (consecutive weeks)
- 1 initial assessment email to get started
- 4 emails with tips, inspiration and activities geared towards your particular goals
“It is never too late to be what you might have been.” ~ George Eliot
Affirmation For Creativity
This Month’s Affirmation: “I am always open to the flow of creativity!”
To use as wallpaper click on image to enlarge, for Windows right-click “Set as Desktop”
Book of the Month
No matter how long and how well you express your creativity, there are times when the well runs dry and you need a little dose of motivation to get you back on track. There are many authors on the market who write books aimed to inspire you to reach your creative potential. One of the most prolific of these authors is Julia Cameron who is also an artist, playwright, poet and writer that is perhaps most well known for her bestselling book The Artist’s Way: A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity. The Artists Way continues to inspire many and is the first book in a trilogy designed to get you exploring your creativity. “Walking in This World: The Practical Art of Creativity” is the intermediate version of The Artist’s Way which helps you to continue your creative growth and the third installment, “Finding Water: The Art of Perseverance” is designed to help those already following a creative path overcome creative blocks and stagnancy.
Well-written, inspirational and motivating, “Finding Water” appeals to most creative people who have been creating for a while and have perhaps reached a block, burnout or feel their creativity has become stagnant. This book offers a twelve-week boot camp of sorts with wisdom and tools designed to help you break out of your rut and renew your creative spirit.
I would highly recommend any of Julie Cameron’s work, as it seems to come from a genuine place; she has been there and lets you know you are not alone.
available at http://www.chapters.indigo.ca
April’s Book Recommendations
Imagine: The science of creativity
by Jonah Lehrer
List Price:CDN$ $29.95
Story: Substance, Structure, Style, and the Principles of Screenwriting
by Robert McKee
List Price:CDN$ $34.32
Page After Page: Discover the Confidence & Passion You Need to Start Writing & Keep Writing (No Matter What!)
by Heather Sellers
List Price: CDN$ $21.99
April’s Writing Prompts
Who gets heard?…
Write a dialogue between two distinctively different people with opposing points of view, both trying to get their opinions across. Is one an optimist and the other a pessimist? One passive and the other aggressive? Do the two manage to meet in the middle or do they still remain closed to the other’s point of view? Reflect and write!
A picture is worth a thousand words…
To use as wallpaper click on image to enlarge, for Windows right-click “Set as Desktop”
Inspirational Spark~Ignite Your Creativity
Photography by Belinda Witzenhausen ©2012
Music by Mike Witzenhausen ©2012