Over the last couple of weeks I’ve been making more and more of an effort to be creative. I know that when I feel stressed or overwhelmed, my ability to be creative is one of the first things to suffer, which is ironic given that being creative is actually one of the things that helps the most.
One of the things I find hardest when I’m trying to get the creative juices flowing is knowing where and how to start, so I’ve put together a few ideas, all very accessible, to get you over that first creativity hurdle. Here are five ideas to help kickstart your creativity:
This one is ideal for budding writers who find themselves staring at a blank page and couldn’t be simpler because all you need is a pen and paper and BOOM, off you go. Don’t think about it at all, just literally start writing and don’t stop. It could be about anything at all, just let the words flow from your head onto the paper and try not to overthink them.
You might want to set a timer and write non-stop for 10 minutes or so, or aim to fill a certain amount of space, it doesn’t really matter. The important thing is just putting pen to paper.
I had a really lovely half hour last weekend where I took a sketchbook and pencil into the garden and just started drawing. I only drew a bit of twig from an oak tree with some leaves attached, and I’m pretty sure it wasn’t exhibition worthy, but it was completely absorbing, and for that thirty minutes I really didn’t think about anything else.
Be gentle on yourself with this one, and try not to be critical. It’s all about warming up your creative brain, not creating a masterpiece.
This sounds challenging but can actually be as simple as covering some dining chairs with some scraps of fabric and a staple gun. When I was poor and in my early twenties I had a bit of a thing about buying those old loom ottomans and spray painting them in bright colours and reupholstering the tops. It was a really cheap and easy thing to do but they were brilliant as toy chests, for clothes and bedding and towels.
If you fancy having a play with fabric, just find an upholstery fabrics retailer online and let your creative juices flow!
I think cooking is often overlooked at a creative activity, but I get huge satisfaction from a day spent pottering about in the kitchen baking cakes or making biscuits. Most recently I’ve made my own chocolate marshmallow teacakes, made a rather lovely lemon ricotta cake and some homemade Jaffa cakes.
Whether it’s fancy meals or simple baking, cooking can be a brilliant way to get creative.
Taking good photos used to be the preserve of those who could afford fancy cameras and endless rolls of film but nowadays most of us have access to brilliant cameras via our phones and all kinds of easy editing tools, so it’s easier than ever to take a decent photograph.
Something as simple as going out for a walk in the area near your home and looking out for interesting or quirky shots can really get your mind working in new ways as you start paying attention to small details and becoming very mindful of your surroundings.
What creative activities do you do to get your brain working?