Like most things in my life, I find that creativity comes in waves. Perhaps it is the human part of me, or just part of my personality in general, but I find that I go through spurts where I am into crocheting, or waves of interest in scrapbooking (I now have more hard copies of pictures than I care to count), or weeks where I workout every single day (those are too far and between for my liking, if I’m being honest). Creativity certainly works that way for me, too. I would like to say that I have a fabulously in depth reason for why this is the case, but, alas, I do not. I’m not always sure where inspiration to be creative even comes from–sometimes I feel like creating something—anything—is crucial to having a good day or week, and other times I can’t bring myself to even open my lap top and edit an old piece of writing.
I’m starting to learn, though, that this is perfectly normal and perfectly okay. We can’t all be turned on all the time. Both literally (we need sleep) and when it comes to creativity. I like to think of my creative side as a faucet—some days that faucet is turned on full force, and other times it is turned off. If it were turned on all the time, that would be a big waste of water and a drain on resources. See, that’s the thing—there’s always only so much of a resource to go around. I think that even includes creative power!
As I’m learning about these waves and coming to accept the ebbs and flows of creativity, I’m learning how to ride the creativity wave. When I’m feeling creative, I go for it! Sometimes that means writing a dozen poems in a week (you’ll hear more about that in an upcoming episode of the podcast) and sometimes that means scrap booking every free evening I have for a week or two. There’s no one way that the creativity wave comes, but when it arrives I grab by surfboard and head to the beach.
I think that many of us, as writers and creatives, expect our brains to be turned on to creativity all the time. That’s simply not plausible! If you’re anything like me, you have a lot going on in life that isn’t particularly creative. There’s work, said (nonexistent) workout routine, pets, kids, family, taxes, laundry, and lots of other things that take time away from creative pursuits. Sometimes that means that you don’t get to be creative everyday—and that’s okay. I’ve slowly comes to terms with the fact that the waves sometimes come crashing in when I’m unprepared, and when I would like to be in a more creative mindset, the waters are calm. Because of this, I’ve slowly started to just accept that fact and move with the water. It’s much easier that way—trust me!
So whether you are riding the crest of a massive wave of inspiration or currently just getting through the day to day, roll with it! It may not be what you were planning on, but that’s okay. Learning to float in the shallows is just as important as cresting a massive swell, so get ready.
Are you currently riding high on a creativity wave or biding your time on your pool floatie until inspiration strikes?