Today, I'd like to offer five easy ways to get started with your creative practice.
The first one is the most important, and if you only remember one thing today, this is it:
You have to start.
Don't overthink it. Don't worry about it. Don't wonder what you need, just immediately start. Look around your house right now. You don't need extra special supplies. In fact, at its simplest, you only need a notebook and a piece of paper.
Start writing anything at all - poem, essay, brainstorm, random stream of consciousness. All of these things can later become seeds for something else.
Number two: don't overcomplicate it. You don't need the fanciest supplies. You don't need a rock solid, iron-clad plan, you just need to start thinking differently. When I talk about a regular creative practice, this can definitely include really cool creative projects but MORE IMPORTANTLY -
I'm talking about different ways that you can live your life and interact in the world. The term creative means making something new that wasn't there before. You could be creating new habits, new relationships, new boundaries, new ways of operating in the world, or new thought patterns.
Don't make it hard. Just pick one thing and do it.
Tip number three: find a partner. Sometimes when you're trying to start something or maintain something all by yourself, it's hard to keep the momentum going. If you can find someone - a friend, an acquaintance or a family member, or someone online that is of the same mind and that you feel you would enjoy spending some time with, you can reach out and explain what you're doing.
I'm starting a new creative practice. It's new for me, or maybe I've created before, but I'm doing it in a new way. I want someone to partner with, and I want some accountability in that process. Would you be interested in doing that with me?
I have partners and accountability friends in many areas of my life. People love to do this because it's a reciprocal relationship. They're not just doing it for you; they're getting the same thing in return. So partner up, it's an excellent way to get started and keep going.
#4: get inspired. If you're not sure exactly what you want to do, or you feel kind of stuck - you know you want to do something, but your idea is sort of vague and not concrete, seeking external inspiration can get you moving forward. There are so many places that you can find inspiration online that I won't even list them. If you need a good starting place, visit my Instagram then click through the accounts that I'm following. You're bound to find a good jumping off point there!
Walk outdoors. Look up museum exhibits and make a plan to attend.
I find a ton of inspiration just by going outside and walking around my neighborhood or nearby neighborhoods that I don't see as often. You get yourself out of your comfort zone.
Reminder: everything you make doesn't have to be 100% original. A lot of art is inspired by other people. That's perfectly fine as long as you don't try to sell art that you blatantly and wholesale copied off of someone else. Be sure to thank and give credit to the original artist, especially if you're posting on social media.
Tip #4: join a group. There are so many groups out there that are organized around creative activities nd a lot of them have events. In fact, I have a writing workshop tomorrow morning. It's every Saturday for eight weeks and I love that because it pushes me a little bit during the week to create more work and to do some of the assignments that have been given to us. I get the opportunity to collaborate with a bunch of other people who are working on similar projects.
Bonus tip: aim for consistency with your practice. That doesn't mean you have to do it every day, but do it on some regular cadence because if not time will slip away. It's tricky like that!
I know that you can do it, and I cannot wait to hear back to see how this goes.
Who am I?
I’m a systems engineer and creative coach living in ABQ, NM. I believe that we can intentionally design our lives to align with our deepest dreams and desires.