Keep the creative flame burning

This week, my creative mind seems to have awoken from some extended period of hibernation. I wasn’t aware it had been dormant. But now that I suddenly feel inspired to create again I’ve realised that it’s something that’s been missing for the majority of this year.

There are a few things that I have identified as possible reasons for the recent awakening. They are:

  • recent visits to exhibitions at The National Glass Centre and Durham Cathedral
  • researching ideas and sketching out a design for this year’s linocut Christmas card
  • a new work collaboration giving me the opportunity to bounce around ideas

In the mood I’m in right now, I just want to start making… but there’s also work to be done. There’s a tension between wanting to drop everything and ride the wave of inspiration and knowing I have other things to do first.

I see parallels in this with more broadly how we prioritise what we have to do. Especially for those of us who have flexibility and autonomy in when and how we work. Often we’re drawn to spend our time on the more fun or exciting projects, or aspects of a project. This is something that’s covered in the piece about yak-shaving I shared last week.

My biggest concern is that if I don’t act now I may lose my motivation or inspiration. It feels like a flame that could be snuffed out at any moment and my mission is to keep it burning. So I’m asking myself some questions about what I can do to keep the flame alive without letting it overtake everything else.

  • How can I bring more creativity into my day-to-day work?
  • How do I capture ideas as they arise so that I can return to them later?
  • How can I change my environment to promote creativity?
  • How do I move from inspiration to action when the time is right?

I’m curious about your relationship to creativity and inspiration right now.

What systems or practices do you have in place to keep the fire burning?

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This post originally appeared in my newsletter, Gathered Thoughts.

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about emma

I am a coach and facilitator helping people to pause, reflect and make conscious choices about what comes next. In my writing I explore themes of personal development, reflective practice and what it means to live well.