Creativity can be effortless in some moments and a nightmare in others.
At times, it flows, like a catamaran gliding over glassy waters in a persistent gale. At others, we feel like weary explorers battling through the thick, grasping vines of our jungle minds.
Often we try to start our work when we are scattered. We feel flustered, and we want to be elsewhere.
Our minds wander. We feel scratchy. We pop another glance at those people walking into the cafe.
We get annoyed because we have this thing to do. And we even kind of want to do it. We’re interested, and yet we still can’t hear the starting pistol that pushes us forward.
When we do finally get going, we try too hard. We try to force things. We try to fight our frustration, rather than working with it.
I’m in a rush too. I want to get things started. I want to make things now, and I want to finish them quickly.
But I’m not getting anywhere.
This is when I pay attention to the first step I’ve often neglected.
This step need not take long.
This is to cultivate in me a state of creative openness; a relaxed commitment; a sense of unattached urgency.
This is an opportunity to prime my body; mind; soul — to be centered. Open to insight. At ease. Playful.
All of the above begin at the single point that is stillness.
One minute is all you need.
One minute to watch thoughts like bubbles that float up and vaporise, rather than ensnared in rumination.
A minute to absorb yourself in the circular nature of breathing; to let your shoulders drop; to unclench your jaw.
One minute to ease into the pain; rather than to pretend it isn’t there.
A minute to create space in thought, allowing strange and colourful insights to emerge.
This is what will prime you for the energised creative work to follow.
Few give themselves this minute.
Who knew that adding a tiny, quiet window to your creative process could make such a difference?