10 Ways to Staying Creative

10 Ways to Staying Creative

Sometimes when it is your job to be creative it can become hard to keep those creative juices flowing and to keep on creating. There are so many things surrounding us with social media and the speed of life can make the creativity come to a halting stop. This can’t happen if you do this for a living and use your creativity to pay your bills. So I have put together some ideas that can help you keep the creativity flowing and stop the blockage.

You can do all of these or just a few of these, whatever works honestly! The most important thing is to release the creative block!

  1. Pinterest: Of course this is my first one guys. Pinterest is the best thing that a creative professional could use. I can remember the day that one of my best friends from college sent me an invite to Pinterest. I was so enthralled by the website. This was something that we had done for years in Design school. We would go on google or websites and save images in a folder and create mood boards to spark ideas and set the course for a design. I was always battling for space on my computer and then here came Pinterest to save my hard drive space! Hallelujah!
  2. Music: I read an article about what music does to our brain. (read it here) In this article it talks about how certain types of music can increase our creativity. We need to maybe step out of our “normal” playlist and experience some new music. Maybe even check out a band that is playing nearby and discover a new sound that could spark creativity!

    “It turns out that a moderate noise level is the sweet spot for creativity. Even more than low noise levels, ambient noise apparently gets our creative juices flowing, and doesn’t put us off the way high levels of noise do.”

  3. Never stop creating: Often times we get out of the habit of constantly creating because we are “having” to create for clients all the time. I am totally guilty of this! When we are creative professionals working to bring other peoples ideas of visions in to reality we can get stifled and dry up our own creative voice. That personal creativity is what makes us so good for our clients. We have to continue to create the things that we love and create just for fun and just to express what we want to say, so that we can continue that flow of creativity for other people. Sometimes that might mean using other mediums or doing a daily drawing challenge. Creativity can some times work like a muscle and when we stop letting our personal creative voice come out then we stop that flow.  
  4. Go back to the basics: Sometimes is might help to go back to the basics and practice the simple things. Piano players often play the scales even if they have been playing for many years. Illustrators should sketch simple sketches and keep the basics fresh in your mind. Sometimes the simple daily practices will stretch that creative muscle and stop the blockage that is keeping you from finishing that project.
  5. Get some rest: I know I have been saying to create create and do daily practices. But when that is failing sometimes you just need to stop and take a break. Get outside, take a nap. Do something completely different to change the pace. Focus your mind on things that are calming and relaxing. Stress can be a main factor in stopping creativity and so sometimes you have to find a way to destress and relax. Take a rest.
  6. Healthy Food/Habits: This isn’t a health and fitness blog, but we all know that creativity comes from the brain and heart and your brain needs nutrients to function. (I wish this meant coffee and tortilla chips were enough, then I would be set.) But it takes a little more than that. Sometimes we can get stressed and need to clean up our diet or add some cardio into our daily routine. Cardio gets your endorphins flowing and can really clear up your mind and spark creativity. I have taken up running. (I don’t do it as religiously as I should.) For some reason I can’t actually keep a schedule with running but when I am feeling the overwhelmed feeling of stress and watching my creativity dwindle then I get those running shoes out. So think of adding some cardio in or getting extra vitamins in your diet.
  7. Research: If I am in the middle of a project I love visiting book stores. It really can help to see what others have done and look for ideas that help you see things you could do or adapt. Researching can spark ideas and help you pinpoint what you really need to finish the project you are currently stuck on.
  8. Travel: This doesn’t have to mean that you have to travel across the world. This could just mean that you go to a new restaurant or a new store across town. Change of scenery always helps spark some creativity and open your mind to new things.
  9. Have fun: Do something fun with the people that you love. When we hustle so much and build up the stress of the list of things we need to accomplish we miss out on the opportunities to enjoy our family and friends. These moments can sometimes spark the most creative ideas. Let’s not miss out on quality times with the people we love. They could give you the things you are looking for to stop the creative blockage you are facing.
  10. Positive Thinking: Negative thinking just leads to negative things. We have to keep positive thinking. When you come to a moment where you are stopped in the road and not sure how to get over the hump, tell yourself “this too shall pass.” You will finish the project. You always find a way. It is a lie to think that you will fail or that you won’t make it, or that it won’t be good enough. If you are feeling down try some of the steps above to get yourself in to a positive mindset about your situation. Positive thinking leads to a positive life. We must find ways to stay positive and believe that we will make it through.

I understand that creative blockage can be frustrating but you will make it through. Creativity is a process and sometimes you just need to follow through the process and trust that you will make it to the end. Don’t allow doubt or negativity to make you believe anything other than you are great at what you do and you are a ery creative person. Creativity flows through you so just let it go and let it flow.


If you have any other tips that you use to stay creative please leave a COMMENT BELOW. I would love to hear your tips and thoughts on how to stay creative.

Thanks for reading, If you haven’t already subscribe to my YouTube channel to stay connected. I love sharing ideas and tips I find along the way so that we can help each other achieve our highest potential!

 

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5 Tips to Designing your Personal Brand

Designing your Personal Brand

This can be overwhelming. Where do we even begin with branding for ourselves there is just so much we can do. Right!?!?!?!?

Creating a personal brand can be hard, I know!

It is so much easier to think for someone else and design for someone else when you can see the limitation you aren’t stuck inside their brain. Well we have to sometimes step out of the vast creativity in our brain and pretend that we are our own client.

“Pretend you are your own client.”

When we are designing for ourself we have to rely on the process we have created and just work the process and trust that in the end we will come out with something.

In the video above I break it down in to 5 simple tips to help you get started in designing your own brand.

Here they are, 5 Tips to Design your Personal Brand

  1. Just Get Started

    So often we just sit in “analysis paralysis”. We have to escape that by just doing something. Even if it is TERRIBLE. No one has to see the first draft but at some point there needs to be a first draft before you can have a final draft. Everyone starts somewhere and if the start was perfect then there would be no reason for a finish would there?  Don’t be afraid to start. Know that as soon as you do you are that much closer to the finish.

  2. Ask Your Friends

    Ask your friends to describe you to them. The best question is, “If you were to describe me to a stranger how would you describe me? What words would you use.” BE CAREFUL. Pick people that are close to you, love you and will be kind and gentle. You are looking for adjectives and for an overall feel of the brand you are trying to create. Ask the people that know you the best to describe you. It will be like looking in a branding mirror. Listen to the words the use and the “feeling” you get. What colors and shapes connect to those feelings as you hear them describe you. This should give you a good gauge to creating a brand.

  3. Pinterest

    This is obviously something we all use, if you don’t then you should. When creating your personal brand you can use Pinterest to show you the overall look that you associate with. Pin things that you like that resonate with you. Then ask your best friend or whoever you know would know you the best to go on a shared (private) board and pin ANY pictures they find that makes them think of you. This could be ANYTHING….you should start to see a theme and it might shed some light on things that are unique to you and your branding. You might even see an overall color scheme pop out in the board.

  4. Use Adjectives

    I use this method a lot when working with clients and creating their brands. It is a great way to give a feel to the brand and the user experience. Put yourself in your client/Audience shoes and think about the adjectives that describe the feeling you want them to have when they log on to your website, buy and use your products….Adjectives will paint a picture of the feel you will want your branding to have. Adjectives are “feeling” words and a lot of designing a brand is taking your company or yourself and making graphic representations of the feeling you want your company to exude. Write down these adjectives and then read them over and think about the colors, shapes, textures you think of when you read them.

  5. Follow the Process.

    Create and repeat. You are not stuck to the first design you come up with. When you launch your design you can ALWAYS expand on it. Coke and Pepsi have changed so many times over the years. Don’t feel stuck to the very first design and creation you come up with. Know that you can always expand and create more and better. But, you can’t expand on something that isn’t there in the first place. So when designing your personal brand it is important to throw insecurities and fear out the window and just create and repeat!

 

I hope these tips were helpful to get you thinking about creating your personal brand.

If you have tips also please COMMENT BELOW…..I would love to hear them and I am sure others would as well.

Thanks for reading and watching…

Until next time!

 




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Habits of a Better Life

We all want a better life right?

I have come to the realization that you don’t have to get a ton of stuff done every day! Woh!

 

I know just take a moment. Let it simmer.

 

I have been the type of person that feels like if I don’t knock off everything on my list then it wasn’t a productive day. Of course the list always grew every day. I got so exhausted trying to keep up with it. The other day I thought, ‘I needed a chill pill.’ I realized that sometimes it is ok to get just 1-3 things done. Some days it is even a good idea to do nothing and take a break. We live in a world where things are constantly moving. Technology is advancing so rapidly that we panic if we set the computer or phone down we might miss out on something. We won’t. It will all be there tomorrow. Living in the mindset that you have to go go go go just leads you to the inevitable crash. My dad taught an awesome series on “Pondering the Path of your Feet”. He talked about how we actually have a “circle path”. These are our habits, the things we do every day. These things that we do every day are actually the things that will either propel us forward or backwards.

I have been pondering, ‘What are my circle paths?’ (the things I do daily, weekly, monthly, yearly) I decided the best way to get my circle path to the place where I’m living the life I want is to adjust one thing at a time. I imagined what my day would look like if I was living the life I want, then what are the “habits” in that day or life?

 

Imagine your PERFECT day and what it looks like.

What are you doing? How does it feel?

 

We should start by visualizing what we want and where we want to go. If we walk through life not knowing where we are going we might wake up one day so far from where we are supposed to be. We must visualize where we are going. Imagine what you want and what it feels like. Bring your future to your present. (that is just like using your faith) Connect to what it is you want and you will see more clearly the path to get there.
Taking it one step at a time will get you to the a better life with better habits. We all want that end result and that “perfect” day now. But, if we attempt to bite off the whole thing right away we will just create a habit of false starts. This is not a concept that is new. It isn’t something that we haven’t heard before or read before.

 

If you are like me you have read blogs like this countless times and said, “Yeah, I’m going to do this! It will be great ‘New year. New me.'” Then come 3rd week of January you’re beating yourself up again because you can’t seem to keep up.




Rule of Thirds

Another tip for creating a better life with better habits is the “Rule of Thirds”. Make a list of your top 3 goals. Then write down 3 reasonable things that you think you can accomplish and commit to just that for 1 month. Often times what keeps us from stopping and completing our goals is that we create “dream goals” that we know we can’t really accomplish so in our mind we don’t believe we will accomplish it. Well that little quiet thought in the “back of our minds” is the little culprit killing it before we even start. So think through your goals and start with the one that you KNOW you can accomplish. You have to believe in yourself. When we can accomplish the first thing we set our mind to then that will encourage you to continue with your goals and really reach that better life with better habits!

Some of the habits I am going to start with are:
 
  • – making my bed every morning
  • – plan the next day the night before
  • – hanging my clothes up!
  • – drink more water

I put together a list of tools to get you started! Habit Planning Tools…..who doesn’t get inspired by an awesome planner and some fun pens!


Last but not least…..Embrace Failure!

STOP beating yourself up when you don’t stick to your plan. Life should never be forced to be “perfect”. We can’t expect perfection and think we will achieve our goals and create healthy habits. When you think of your goals/habits as a “lifestyle” you can embrace failure and let life happen. Just get back on the horse. Stick to your plan and if “life” happens then live that life and start fresh the next day. Don’t get upset that “life” happens. This is your life and the way you look at each situation is up to you. If you put so much pressure on being perfect and working out EVERY day….one day you aren’t able to do that you will create a defeated feeling.

Take a deep breath.

This is your life! Live it and embrace it!

Don’t villanize “life”. Let things happen. If appointments, family, or weather gets in the way of your “plans”. Enjoy those moments and don’t villanize them. You want to create an excitement around your plans and goals that makes it a joy and a treat to do them. Shift your mind to embrace your life and know that creating a habit is not about a perfect schedule it is about not stopping. When “life” happens you don’t stop that habit because habits are now apart of that “life”. So embrace life and embrace those things that get in your way and just use your problem solving skills to think of how you can work your habits around “life”.

Create a positive emotions toward your goals.

I know you can do it! We will encourage each other on this endeavor of “Circle Paths” and “The Rule of Thirds”.

The Reading Corner:

Here are some books from some that say it better than me. From New York Times Best Sellers. Check out the links below to continue your journey to better habits and a better life!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What are your “Circle paths”? What are your top three?

What habits do you have that you think are helping your life move in the right direction? What habits do you think you need to change?

Comment Below and let me know what your goals are for this year?

What are some circle paths that you want to change and what are some circle paths you would like to make this year?




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