K+BB Collective | The Designers' Corner

May 05 2014

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Identify What Is Blocking You, and Uncork Your Creativity!

Image from tigger11th / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image from tigger11th/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

There are many books out there about WHAT creativity is and how to BE more creative, and when I talk about igniting creativity with others, we explore those aspects in great detail. But for today let’s keep it simple.

Spoiler alert: We ALL have a natural ability to be creative, period. It may be dormant, buried, stifled, stagnant, exhausted and stuffed in a box, but you are a naturally creative being. Left brain, right brain, artist or accountant, you were all born with the innate ability to create. For those of you who don’t think of yourselves as creative, the word creative can also be defined as problem solving and organizing things in a particular way.

Creativity is the ability to imagine what has never existed, to see the big picture, to find the subtle connections between seemingly unrelated things.

Assuming that this is true, that we all have this ability, why aren’t we all out there creatively fulfilled every day being a bunch of creative geniuses? The answer is so painfully simple – we are blocked, someone put a cork in us. If you want to experience more creativity in your life and in your work, you need only to remove the blocks that exist in your life until it starts to flow naturally again. Creativity is a force of nature; it will occur if it is allowed.

Let’s look at common things that block all of us:

  • •Fear of what others will think or say
  • •Perfectionism; fear of making a mistake
  • •Low self confidence
  • •Comparing yourself to others
  • •Getting stuck in our over-developed left brains
  • •Information overload and over commitment
  • •Multi-tasking – it’s a myth that it’s even possible
  • •Work environment; a gray cubicle or being over stimulated by your surroundings
  • •Lack of trusting our own intuition
  • •Over thinking
  • •H.A.L.T.  (hungry, angry, lonely, tired); a breeding ground for everything that blocks creativity
  • •Clutter and distractions
  • •All the shoulds and should-nots in our lives
  • •A lack of curiosity – an open mind is magic for the creative process
  • •You think you know the solution – throw out everything you think you know
Image from KROMKRATHOG/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image from KROMKRATHOG/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Just because I used the word “uncorked” in the title doesn’t mean I’m advocating for having a glass of wine while at your drafting table, or a venti Starbucks, and I love my Starbucks. Just like a fad diet to lose 10 pounds only works temporarily, we need to develop a way of life that supports creativity long term so it can positively impact our entire lives.

Think of this ability as something that will naturally happen if you just get out of its way. We need to be conscious about how to rejuvenate it, inspire it, protect it, exercise it, practice it and share it. I like thinking of it in terms of exercise – your creativity muscle needs to be exercised just like any other muscle.

I had someone ask me recently how do I cultivate creativity in my life and what inspires me. Over the last few years that list has gotten really long. It’s just a part of my life now, from singing, walking in nature, playing with my nieces, my hot pink tennis shoes, writing a gratitude list, taking an improv class and my yoga practice. In my improv class, our mantra is “Embrace the Fail!” and we get standing ovations for “Failing Magnificently!”

This process will not happen overnight; embrace the concept of progress not perfection. Your list of blocks and activities to cultivate your creativity will look different. Join me at www.facebook.com/ignitecreativity to see what my entire list is, and share yours with a growing community of creatives.

Image courtesy of chrisroll/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of chrisroll/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Unwrap that box you are hiding your creativity in – it’s a gift that needs to be let out and explored!

– Blog post by Paula Kennedy, CMKBD, Timeless Kitchen Design, Ignite Creativity

This entry was posted on Monday, May 5th, 2014 at 2:10 PM and is filed under Creativity, Inspiration, Projects. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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