4 Ways to work with where you are on the creative spectrum
Earlier this month, I was having trouble falling asleep. I would get into bed and lay there, my mind spinning with ideas, coming to me like fireworks. I would get up to go write them down in my notebook.
My heart was racing as my brain jumped from one thing to another.
“I could do this! I could do that! What if I did….” I was pumped and excited and high-wired.
I was experiencing a huge burst of creative energy.
Then yesterday, I sat down at my computer to write a blog post. I tapped the keys, but nothing came out. I looked over at my dog snoring in the sun. Cuddling with her was feeling very appealing. I looked out the window. Ah, it’s so pretty out. No, back to the post. I tapped the keys a little more. Nothing. I didn’t know what to write or where to start.
I was experiencing a lull of creative energy.
Creative energy works in cycles
What I have come to discover about creative energy, is that it is working in a constant cycle and that even though we all have the capacity for creativity, it doesn’t always feel that way because our creative energy is somewhere on a spectrum of high and low energy.
Where you are on the spectrum and how you move on it depends on four things:
- how you feel about your creativity (do you believe you are creative?)
- your natural energetic rhythms
- identifying where you are on the creative spectrum
- your willingness to have your creative energy moved
1. How do you feel about your creative energy?
Do you believe that you are creative? Like, deep down in your core? Does the idea of creating something new scare the crap out of you or does it get you all jazzed up?
Think of your creative energy as a radiant being within you. Do you feel connected to her/him? Are you friendly or distant with each other?
I like to think of my creative energy as an entity all her own. She is divine, radiant, luscious and flowy. And she’s apart of me. She flows through me and sometimes it feels really obvious and sometime it’s a lot more subtle.
You could give your creative energy a name. Shakti, Muse, Creative Spirit, Goddess, Jane. Whatever you would like, whatever makes you feel closer and more connected to this energy coursing through you (even if you don’t feel it yet).
2. Your natural creative rhythms
If you look at the world around you, you’ll see that everything is made up of cyclical rhythms. The tides, the cycles of the moon, the seasons, all work in cycles.
Your creative energy is no different. Sometimes it will feel bursting, light, high, and whole. Sometimes it will feel dull, low, dark and empty. It may feel either one of those ways for weeks, months, years even.
Your energy might be lower in the winter and high and bright in the summer. You might find that certain locations supercharge your creative energy.
Maybe you feel the creative energy more urgently right after a sweaty yoga class or when you meditate first thing in the morning or maybe you feel it late, late at night.
Personally, I have discovered that my creative energy seems to be the most wired right around the new moon. I lie awake in the darkest parts of the moon’s cycles, high on insights and ideas. Then by the time the moon starts to wax towards full, the energy evens out a bit (and it’s during this part of the month, I tend to be the most creatively productive.)
So begin to notice your own rhythms.
Notice when you feel dull and when you feel light. Note the times of day, the times of year, check in with where the moon is. Beginning to notice where your energy naturally flows is a really important step to working with your creative energy!
3. Where are you right now on the creative spectrum?
So how do you know where you are on the creative spectrum? It’s pretty easy to identify really.
Do you feel tired, dull, stuck, uninspired, unmotivated, underwhelmed, blocked?
If you said yes to any of these questions, you are on the “in the dark” end of the creative spectrum.
Do you feel frantic, bursting, wired, overwhelmed, fired up?
If you said yes to any of these questions, you are on the “bright + bursting” end of the creative spectrum.
Or maybe you feel content, flowing, glowing and productive. If so, you are the lovely place right in the middle. If that’s the case, file this post away and go, be creative. Let the creative energy flow!
I created a special meditation and reflection questionnaire for you to go deeper into discovering where you are on the creative spectrum. I would love to know what you discover! After you listen in and fill it out, post in the comments what you uncover!
4. Are you willing to change where you are on the creative spectrum?
Whether you are feeling blocked and stuck or bursting with too many ideas, changing where you are on the spectrum depends on how willing you are to change where you are.
That involves really looking at and identifying why you are where you are. And most of the time it boils down to one thing.
Fear that you will run out of ideas if you pick just one of the many that you have and go with it. Or fear that you will make something so terrible, that the whole universe will collapse. Ok, maybe that is a bit dramatic. But you get the idea.
Fear is a crippling emotion that corners our creativity or shuts it down completely. Are you willing to do whatever it is you are being called to do, despite the fear (because the fear is not going to go away)?
One of my favorite poems of all time is a beautiful yoga poem in Root to Bloom by Danna Faulds called “Maybe Not.” In it, she identifies how challenging it can be to go into the core of your deepest fear or greatest joy, but that you do anyway, even if it’s not comfortable, even if you are not confident, even if you aren’t really even all that willing. She says,
“...you take it
anyway, that first step
into the unknown.
Courage is starting
where there is no secure outcome,
no sure result.
The secret is you can
begin again at any time.
Take one deep breath,
So, I challenge you to take a deep breath and dive. Do one thing to move yourself on the creative spectrum. One small act of creating. Make a mark with a paintbrush, write one line of a poem, pick and idea and go with it. Get started on something and you will be moved. I promise.
What’s one thing you will do to change where you are on the creative spectrum? Let me know in the comments below what your next move will be!