Wednesday, 21 October 2015

This Much I Know - Staying Inspired & Being Creative...


Today I am starting a new mid week blog series - 'This Much I Know'

Looking through my blog post history I can see that some of my most popular posts have been when I shared a bit of my experience and a bit of what I know and have learnt.  Those posts were mainly on the subject of social media, but there are so many aspects of running a small creative business, that I thought it would be a nice idea to share a quick list of 5 key tips based on what I've learnt along the way about other aspects of being a small business owner.

I don't claim to be an expert, but I have been doing this for my job for the past five years and in order to have kept going for that time, there are lessons I needed to learn and things I needed to know.
I hope that by sharing these tips you'll find them useful, positive and inspiring!

This week...

This Much I Know About Staying Inspired and Being Creative...

  1. Creativity is a gift that needs to be nurtured and cared for, much like a small child! (or an inner child if you like!).  When you take good care of yourself by eating well, getting plenty of fresh air, exercise, rest and spend precious time with people who make you happy, doing as much as you can to enjoy simply 'being' - then you'll often find that being inspired and creative comes to you naturally.  When any of the above is out of whack, that's when the struggle creeps in.  I have learnt the hard way that it's best to be kind to yourself.
  2. Be a sponge to the world. Enthusiastically embrace the world around you. Gather experiences, travel, meet new people, look around you, notice the details in everything, listen to every sound and people watch (but don't let them catch you doing it!)...use all your senses as much as possible and read, read, read.  The more you absorb, the more resources you'll have to draw on in your creative work and the richer and more unique your work will be.
  3. When you feel the cloud of 'comparison' cast a shadow of doubt over you, that's your cue to go and grab some fresh air for a bit.  Go for a walk, listen to the birds and look up at the big sky to help you gain some perspective on everything... and then breathe, deeply! I like looking up at the sky, it makes me see things for what they are. This is your life, your journey and your chance to make of it what you want. Keep going, one step at a time and the clouds will clear.  If you're doing the thing you love most then that is exactly what you should be doing.
  4. Surround yourself with things that make you smile and create a working environment you are happy to be in.  It's hard to remain motivated if you are finding excuses not to show up let alone stick around!
  5. Most importantly of all, create stuff!  Any stuff...scribble, doodle, write notes.  Even if it's the craziest, spur of the moment idea, get it down, make a record of it in some way -  a sketch, a note, a cutting, a swatch.  These could all be the very things that get you going again when feel a creative dip.  The more you create the easier creativity and inspiration is to come by. Like everything else, it all boils down to practice, practice, practice.

As I said before, I hope you found those five helpful.  I would love to hear any tips you may have for staying creative and inspired, please feel free to share them in the comments below.

Next Wednesday, I plan to share with you 5 things I know about growing a business that serves you -  by which I mean, a business that gives you what you need, not just financially, but in terms of work life balance and creative/ personal fulfillment

Have a lovely day!