Creativity is powerful for all of us. We can channel our pain into penning a poem, singing a song or moving our bodies. We can channel our joy into making a nourishing meal. We can reduce our anxiety by journaling about our worries (and coming up with solutions). We can play by drawing and doodling.
We can pay closer attention to the beauty in this world, and using any camera capture the magic of raindrops, or a flower blooming. We can listen to ourselves by writing, by using our hands to create whatever we need.
We can explore the nooks and crannies of our minds and hearts. We can get to know ourselves, our dreams, wants and wishes a whole lot better.
Below are 15 ideas for spending the week reconnecting to your creativity. Try not to judge yourself on what you create. Instead, focus on the process of writing, doodling, brainstorming, and making. Focus on experimenting, exploring and keeping an open mind.
- Draw your dreams — like author and artist Elle Luna, who’s spending the next 100 days drawing her dreams every day.
- Create a play-book for yourself or a loved one.
- Make a new meal — like this mushroom-stuffed grilled cheese. Yum.
- Draw mandalas (which is actually helpful for soothing anxiety).
- Visit a used bookshop (or any bookstore). Jot down your favorite sentence. Snap a photo of the weirdest book you’ve ever seen (maybe it’s weird because of the title, subject matter or its cover).
- Spend at least 10 minutes responding to these prompts in a notebook, which are from author and writer Sarah Selecky: “Write a scene that feels like you’re looking through clouded glass.” “Write a scene that starts with the line, ‘I didn’t mean to steal his sweater. Only the arms.'” “Read the first sentence of 5 short stories by 5 different authors. Then write 5 first sentences of your own.” “Write about everything that is in your character’s pockets today.” You can sign up here to receive a unique writing prompt every day from Selecky. (I highly recommend it.)
- Get curious about your surroundings. Jot down five questions you have about your home, the plants or trees in your backyard, a landmark you always pass on your way to work, or your entire city. Then take some time to learn the answers.
- Answer one of these journal prompts to get to know yourself better.
- Pen a poem about the details.
- Draw the moon every day for a week. Start tonight.
- Take on a home project.
- Create a collage of everything that inspires you. Images. Words. Ideas. Think of one way you’ll translate that inspiration into your life.
- “Write about a moment experienced through your body. Making love, making breakfast, going to a party, having a fight, an experience you’ve had or you imagine for your character. Leave out thought and emotion, and let all information be conveyed through the body and senses.” ~ From Barbara Abercrombie’s excellent book Kicking In The Wall: A Year of Writing Exercises, Prompts and Quotes To Help You Break Through Your Blocks And Reach Your Writing Goals.
- Create a silly sketch.
- Visit a museum. “Buy postcards of the works you like. Write notes on the back about your experience of the work. Mail them to yourself.” I love this tip, which comes from Danny Gregory’s book The Creative License: Giving Yourself Permission to be the Artist You Truly Are.
Pick any activity that resonates with you. Or challenge yourself to create your own list of 15 prompts and projects. Do one every day, starting tonight or tomorrow morning. Happy creating!