It’s a new year and you are probably full of ambitious plans and inspiring goals. Setting intentions at the beginning of the year – or at any time, for that matter – can help us recharge and bring optimism for the days to come. Just remember to be kind to yourself if those plans are not fully met or turn out differently than expected.
If leading a more creative life is one of your objectives for this year, here are five tips to help you ignite the spark that exists within you. We are all creative beings already; we just need to find a way to harness the curiosity that will lead us to unleash our creativity.
1. Try Something New or Out of Your Comfort Zone
It doesn’t have to be a big gesture – even trying a new medium, a slightly different format or a fresh subject will help you find joy in unexpected places. And remember that frustration is part of the process, so don’t get discouraged when you navigate situations outside your comfort zone. You’ll find that creativity is often enhanced when we try new things.
2. Develop a Healthy Relationship with Perfectionism
A little bit of well-managed perfectionism can be a helpful tool. Last year we chatted with jewellery and paper artist Melanie Brauner who shared her insight on perfectionism and how it has actually had a positive effect on her creative journey. “Perfectionism is telling me exactly what I need to know for getting better,” she said. “It does actually point out the truth, sometimes a really difficult truth about what could be better, and it can be painful to listen to it, but you can develop a relationship with it. You have to learn to understand that that voice in your head is not necessarily judging you, it’s trying to help you so you can listen to that voice and actually use it to get better.”
3. Surround Yourself with Other Creatives
Whether it’s listening to a podcast, reading a book, joining a master class, watching a TED Talk or connecting in person with other creatives, inspiration from people you admire and respect or input from people who share your tastes and goals is always important to ignite ideas, start conversations and feel stimulated again.
4. When You Are On a Creative Roll, Go a Little Bit Further
Digging a bit deeper can often help to uncover better ideas that were probably lurking underneath the surface, so keep working a little bit longer – but also accept when you have hit a wall and know when to walk away to avoid creative burnout.
5. Embrace Imposter Syndrome
In order to be able to move on, it’s important that we acknowledge any feelings of insecurity or self-doubt. Know that most artists and creatives deal with imposter syndrome at one point or another. You are not alone in this. Own those feelings, acknowledge them, trust that they are telling you to get better and then move on.
What are your best tips to lead a more creative life? We’d love to hear them.