Having spent most of my high school years embarked on many creative subjects from arts, photography and textiles to studying a bachelors degree in Fashion and Textiles; I have come to reflect on my creative journey through life and how it’s played a big role in my emotional wellbeing.
Wellbeing describes our mental state and how we feel in our day to day lives, this can change depending on our life circumstances. Recently I have undergone a new journey of rebuilding my emotional well-being after dealing with emotional hardship (social media can mask others emotional well-being). A colourful and well curated feed on Instagram certainly doesn’t paint a true picture of day to day life. This is still something that I’m working on building through my creative experience and my positive mindset.
Now is a really interesting time in my life as I’ve now been working in the creative industry for almost 10 years. In a few different capacities, mainly teaching creative subjects to freelance writing. There has now been a deeper desire to create more, creativity to me is the deepest form of self expression. My desire to create mainly comes from the natural world and my travels. Holding my SLR camera and capturing many candid moments brings my creativity back to life, holding a craft item from a knitting needle to an embroidery needle brings a sense of freedom back to me, curating mood boards and stills ready for my next photo shoot allows me to be more creative.
Sometimes there are so many things around me that spark creativity that at times I feel burnt out. It’s at this point where I disconnect in order to reconnect to a place where I recharge my soul. This is where I stop posting on all forms of social media and focus more on my mind, body and soul.
Read on to see how to boost your creative wellbeing.
1. Explore your natural surroundings
Put simply, take a breath of fresh air and go for a walk. After a long and sometimes stressful day at work, the last thing you’d want to do is go for a walk, instead you would rather sit on your sofa watching TV with a cup of your favourite brew. Instead go for a 10/20 minute walk. Let your mind take in the fresh air, better still go for a 35 minute run. It’s been proven that regular physical activity plays a vital role in boosting our cognitive abilities thus improving certain types of thinking.
Clear you mindspace through meditation, put simply train your brain to filter out all thoughts from ‘what will I have for dinner today’ or ‘wait a minute I forgot to complete a particular task on my to do list’.
I started full meditation back in May this year and honestly found it hard to be still and focus in the present moment. Letting thoughts and feelings go is extremely hard when it comes to execution.
We all read that meditation is about sitting in a quiet room and focusing on our breathing, try it now… take a deep breath, use your breathing app on your smart watch and take deep breaths in, now breathe out. I’ll be honest with you whilst doing this I’m distracted and thinking when will I complete this task, I’ve got so much to do!
It’s perfectly normal for you mind to jump from one place to another whilst trying to meditate, I usually stop myself in my tracks and re focus on my breathing and usually the presence of a spiritual element, mainly God. Whatever your beliefs are bring in a spiritual element if possible, if you have different beliefs then focus back on your breathing.
Meditation works best with a daily routine, firstly decide on a time and place that works best for you and feed this into your daily routine. Maybe call it your quiet time. By feeding this routine within your daily activities your creativity flows and you become more at peace with yourself.
3. Stop being hard on yourself
Our minds can sometimes be our worst enemies! At times we let our minds run at over 100mph and yet wonder why we are feeling stressed or overworked. I can vouch for us ladies and say we well and truly overthink most situations!
Next time your about to overthink something please stop in your tracks and take a deep breath, focus on the presence, the now and not the ifs. If you’ve got a tight deadline or are going through a storm in your life remember the storm will pass, if not now but it will certainly pass. Focus on how your going to deal with the situation, make sure you talk to someone and please do not bottle it all up. As stated our minds are our worst enemies!
4. Bake a cake, make a card or build something
Who else loves the smell of a freshly baked treat? The element of baking, cooking or building something for yourself or others produces a certain chemical in your mind which helps you to relax and feel good about yourself and others. Creating something especially baking helps to stimulate the senses.
Creativity is not just about being the next big chef or fashion designer it’s about creating something from nothing.
Don’t be afraid to take risks, join a new group, get out of your comfort zone. It is extremely hard if you’re an introvert to try out something new in a social setting. Small steps can push you further, try out a new activity from learning to play a musical instrument to starting out in photography?
Don’t wait for opportunities to come your way, instead create your own opportunities.
I’d love to know how you boost your creativity and hope that this post truly helps those of you stuck in a creative rut. Let me know in the comment section below.