I am surrounded by creative minded loved ones and then there is me… I am analytical minded (hence the career choice of accounting) but have always longed to have creative talents. I’ve always been too insecure about trying creative activities to actually put myself out there. BUT NO MORE!! I’ve realized that it doesn’t matter if anyone else thinks what I do is good or not. The only thing that matters is that I have fun doing it and am proud of what I accomplish!
When I made the commitment to not let my fear of failure hold me back from my dream of creativity I sat down and made a list of what creative activities I wanted to try and how I wanted to express my new found goal. My list ended up as follows:
- Writing – 1. Create a Blog. 2. Write a novel.
- Photography – Take artistic photo’s each month and share them.
- DIY Crafts – Create home decorations/furnishings rather than buy.
- Cooking – Create delicious meals without using a recipe.
Great! I had a list of my goals!… Now what…
I was stuck, I didn’t know where to start. So I consulted the most naturally creative person I know, my husband (you can find his design blog here)! He is an artist in every aspect of his life and can’t turn it off so I thought he might be able to give me some advice on how to turn it on. He had some advice that really helped me get started and from there I was able to find what works best for me.
Here is my Top 10 List of tips for those not naturally creative that want to add it to their life!
1. Just do it! – Stop over thinking it. This was my husbands first and most valuable piece of advice. I had lists and outlines and plans but wasn’t actually starting on any of my goals. He said to stop planning it and just let it happen. He was kind enough to ease me into it by giving me “homework assignments”. He gave me a generic topic like “your main character is walking down the sidewalk” and I had to free write a few pages on that topic. I expected to spend hours just staring at the blank page but once I stopped trying to create an entire novel in order in my head the words just started flowing out of me and it was fun! Just do it works for all create goals. Creativity isn’t something you can force, you just have to let it flow out of you naturally and we all have it in us!
2. Don’t be a perfectionist! – Along the same lines as #1 creativity doesn’t need to be perfect. Just let your creativity happen naturally, don’t try so hard to make it fit into the original idea you envisioned in your mind. Often the “mistakes” and unplanned are what makes your art work (whatever it may be) truly unique and special. I have come to realize that when things don’t go as planed they tend to turn out even better than I had been able to imagine.
3. Step out of your comfort zone! – Fresh ideas need fresh inspiration. If you don’t step out of the familiar how can you expect to create new and unfamiliar masterpieces? Experience new things, go to new places, try new foods, meet new people, explore different types of music and different pieces of art. Everything we experience will subconsciously effect and add to our own creativity, so get out there and soak up as much inspiration as you can!
4. Take it with you everywhere! – You never know when inspiration will strike and sadly often times it darts away as quickly as it came so be prepared! Take a notebook with you everywhere you go to jot down raw ideas or free write when the mood strikes. Take a camera with you as part of your everyday routine to capture all those inspiring oddities or beautiful moments no one can predict. Don’t expect these moments to happen when you pencil them into your busy schedule, be ready to take full advantage of what is already around everyday.
5. Have fun! – Don’t take it too seriously. Laugh, play, have fun with it all! The joy you put into it will shine through the work and bring it to life! Let that inner kid out!
6. Walk away! – If you get stuck or cant focus, walk away. Don’t give up, just take a break. Let your mind and body do something else. You may be trying to hard so put it aside and come back with fresh eyes and a clean slate. If you can’t seem to put it out of your mind, try meditation or yoga to help cleanse the palate.
7. Don’t judge yourself until you have plenty to judge! – when coming up with ideas or trying something new not every attempt will be amazing. Some ideas will turn out great some will fall flat. Don’t judge your ideas until you have plenty to judge, at which point you will see that some are great and those are what matter.
8. Believe in your own creative ability! – Stop telling yourself you can’t do it. No matter how badly you want something, no matter how hard you try, if you tell yourself you can’t succeed, you won’t succeed. We all have the ability to be creative, some of us just have to try harder than others. Tell yourself you are creative, believe!
9. Make creativity a priority! – These days we are all so busy. Finding time to fit everything in is difficult but if you don’t make it a priority it will fall behind. If you are truly dedicated to becoming a more creative person find a way to make it a part of your life.
10. Share your creations – This may be the hardest part (at least for me). Are you proud of what you created? Don’t hide what could bring other pleasure simply out of fear of rejection. If you are proud of what you created hold on to that but send your art out into the world to enhance others lives. Some people won’t like it and that’s ok, others will. If you feel more comfortable sharing your creation with strangers create a blog or put it on Pintrest. If you only want to share your creation with people who love you, share it with family and friends. It’s up to you who you share it with, just share it!