My top tips for maximum creativity and success
How do you keep staying creative in a fast-paced environment? How do you keep moving yourself to the next level as a designer? How do you keep leading when everyone is following what is happening around you? How do you stay creatively engaged and motivated?
These are real struggles in a creative business and for a creative person, a constant process to focus and refocus – and also get things done and done well.
Don’t fight the current
I find changing gears between creativity and running a business takes energy and time, and one is not always able to compartmentalise your time as much as you would like. Life happens, projects need attention, people need your support. There is always ebb and flow; sometimes the current changes and you have no choice but just to go with it.
Then on top of that you have to not only move through the challenges but rise above them and keep taking it up. There are days when I am there, when it feels easy and then there are days when my energy feels quite depleted, and I am not sure how I am going to get there.
Feed your energy
Creativity is energy that you need to manage. The sources of this come from many things. The inspiration around you. Places you go. People you meet. Conversations you have. Books you read. But very importantly it’s about recharging from within. Giving yourself space to do things that revive you. Prayer. The ocean. A holiday. Painting. Writing. Sports.
My first point of depletion comes when I am not taking charge of my personal wellness. When I do not make space for myself. I am personally more of an introvert than I am an extrovert. I get a lot of energy by being by myself. Reading, writing, swimming, being outside, and simply having my family around me.
Read the signs
As you get to know yourself better over the years, you can actually observe your reactions change when you aren’t making sure that you are doing these energetic things for yourself. You can read the signs but often at that stage it is too late, and then you have to stop physically to recharge. When you are doing the daily things right you manage the pace of your energy consistently.
Since I started cold water swimming it feels like I have more time. My mind feels clearer, and my energy is constant and good. There are the obvious health reasons that would make this true but there is more to it. There is the fact that when we reconnect to nature this feeds us energetically. There is an equilibrium that is restored. We observe the beauty and the magnificence of what is around us, and as a creative person I find this incredibly inspiring and motivating.
My top tips
The interesting thing to me always about nature is that there is not one day that is the same. Not one. You have read what is happening around you before going for your swim or going for a walk. You consider how the wind has changed, the temperature, the currents, the swells, the same would be true of an outdoor activity. There are some key lessons to be taken from this.
1. What is the swell like today?
I am realising more and more you need to read the day. You may have planned things out to happen in a certain way. Set out key objectives. These are fundamental things to do each day, week and month but don’t forget to read the day. What is happening around you? What is going well? What is not? Pay attention to the currents around you. Your sales. Your service. Product awareness. Your team. Your suppliers. What does it mean for what you need to achieve? I am not necessarily only talking about big things but small things that are happening that can snowball and take you off track.
2. Don’t be afraid to get out there.
Get out of your comfort zone. It is always a little good to feel nervous. This shows a healthy respect for your craft and also that you put effort into doing it better and better. When it doesn’t feel right. It isn’t right. When you are not sure, then it’s not. Really trust your instincts. I get this sense of calm and resonance when I have nailed it. I tend to keep going until I feel it. Don’t listen to everyone else, unless you feel it, it ain’t there yet.
3. Manage what needs to be managed, don’t avoid it.
It’s like seeing that wave come and then only deciding what you are going to do when it hits you and then it hits you. Keep a lookout for waves and make a move before it hits you. I personally don’t like doing this part of what I need to do. I would prefer to just focus on making the world beautiful and when I avoid the conflict, oh boy, can it really derail you. You have to start with the things you least want to resolve. Get it out the way and keep a watchful eye on what other waves may come with it.
4. And above all else, do what sets your soul on fire.
For me that is escaping into the beautiful world of interiors where I get to enjoy the work of other incredible designers or immersing myself deeply in the ocean even writing this blog this rainy Sunday morning. It is important to learn from what is around, to ground yourself and to give back. It is about closing the circle for yourself, for those you love, your community and for the world. Living the best version of yourself is also about honouring who you uniquely are and what you have to bring.
No one gets to do it like you do. Let your light shine.