Writers talk about (and agonize over) a condition they call writer’s block. When this occurs even experienced authors report feeling stuck. It’s not just limited to writers, of course. Any creative endeavor can get bogged down when the creator feels blocked.
Psychologists suggest that we can shorten our down time by doing something unrelated to the project that has us stymied. In other words, we can solve the problem by walking away from the problem…for a while.
With that in mind, I polled several of my creative friends and asked them, “What do you do when you need fresh inspiration?” Every […] Continue Reading…
They were having a discussion about political slogans this morning on NPR. Apparently, presidential candidates have been using them for decades. Not all of them were effective nor memorable.
Whether we realize it or not, most of us have a collection of slogans that are stored in our brains. Like its cousin the mantra, a slogan regularly resurfaces and repeats itself.
Many of these have been with us since childhood and were more of a warning than a guide to living a great life. Money doesn’t grow on trees. If you can’t do it perfectly, don’t bother doing it.
I’m guessing you […] Continue Reading…
On the morning of August 25, 1997, the big story on the morning news shows was the Powerball lottery drawing happening that evening. For the first time ever, a lottery jackpot had reached the $300,000,000 mark. Lines were forming outside convenience stores, people were planning a lavish future. A mathematician assured the Today Show interviewer that someone would absolutely win based on the finite combination of numbers..
Although I’m not a lottery player most of the time, I decided that if I didn’t buy a ticket or two I’d miss the excitement when the drawing rolled around that evening. I […] Continue Reading…
Facebook reminded me of this post from three years ago. I think it is equally valid this year.
I’m pretty sure I broke out in a big grin this morning when novelist Jonathan Odell posted a link on Facebook to an interview with him that appeared in today’s Huffington Post.
Of course, I’m always delighted when someone I know is bringing their dreams to life, but this particular dream is one I first encountered when it was a tiny gleam in Jon’s eye.
I’m not certain that I was the first person he’d shared this with, but years ago he told me […] Continue Reading…
When it comes to inspiration, we must invite it in—and seek it out. The more aware you are of the things you find inspiring, the easier it is to tap into those sources.
Don’t wait until you’re feeling stuck or frustrated or cranky before you get a lift.
Inspiration is highly personal so know what feeds yours.
Here are some simple ways to help you live from an inspired place.
° Practice meditation. Practicing meditators tend to have better access to their inner fountain of wisdom and inspiration.
° Build a small collection of movies that you find inspiring and visit them from time to […] Continue Reading…
When I first became a practicing goal-setter, I wasn’t very successful. I’d write down big goals and then have no idea how to even begin. Eventually, I made a discovery that seems so simple I didn’t believe it would work—until I tried it.
It now is firmly established as my most dependable operating system. It starts with picking a number, any number.
You don’t have to be a math whiz to put numbers to work for you. Assigning a number to a project can help you focus and, also, give you a finish line.
Open-ended goals have a way of never reaching completion, […] Continue Reading…
Julia Cameron calls them Artist Dates. Sarah Ban Breathnach calls them Creative Excursions. Whatever you call them, they’re worth making a regular event in your life.
“The Artist Date need not be overtly artistic,” says Cameron, “think mischief more than mastery. Artist Dates fire up the imagination. They spark whimsy. They encourage play. Since art is about the play of ideas, they feed our creative work by replenishing our inner well of images and inspiration.”
The purpose of such solo events is to take time away regularly to visit a new place, gather ideas, or just feed your soul. Although it’s […] Continue Reading…
Author Bill Bryson talks about being on a train and thinking about fellow travel writer Paul Theroux who wrote about fascinating conversations he has with strangers. This perplexes Bryson because he finds it difficult to strike up conversations with traveling Brits.
That got me thinking about a conversation I had with an enthusiastic traveler who wondered how I managed to open a dialogue with someone I’d just met.
Since my Do Talk To Strangers Policy is a vital component of traveling—and being entrepreneurial—I started to consider how I actually go about it. I realized that some of it is purely intuitive.
For […] Continue Reading…
Dreams are extremely fragile—especially in their early days. Dreams, like babies and seedlings, need to be nurtured and surrounded by support.
Here are a handful of ways to get your dreams off to a great start.
° Passion must be present. While a dream may be born in passion, it’s up to you to keep it alive. If you’re halfhearted and lukewarm about them, your dreams will never come true.
One way to keep passion high is to spend a few minutes every day visualizing the successful completion of your dream. How does it look, smell, taste, sound, feel? Allow that vision […] Continue Reading…