Creativity isn’t the exclusive domain of the Picassos or Mozarts of our world. In truth, we are all creatives and creative expression comes in all shapes and forms. Here are simple everyday activities we can all do to spark and sustain our creative well-being.
Research over the past two decades suggests that mindful meditation has many positive effects on physical and mental health, and cognitive performance, such as reducing anxiety, depression, and pain, increasing clarity, sustaining focus, empathy, and introspection, and improving memory. New studies on creative thinking show that mindful meditation enhances insight problem-solving skills.
Free Your Mind
Author Julia Cameron advocates stream-of-conscious writing or “morning pages” to get the creative juices flowing. This means that upon rolling out of bed you write whatever comes to mind – three pages of longhand writing, uncensored. The objective is to clear your head of mental clutter and allow productive ideas to flow.
Set aside a block of time (1-2 hours) each week to nurture your inner artist. Visit a museum or art gallery, catch a movie, listen to music, read a book, go for a walk, or simply sit in a park. The options are endless. Carving out personal “me” time connects you with your fun and playful side.
Express Your Passion
If you don’t have a hobby, consider starting one. Many activities that challenge your mind and engage your heart, such as learning a new language, playing a musical instrument, making art, or solving puzzles are all stimulating pursuits that increase your associative thinking skills – the essence of creativity.
Love the Colours Blue and Green
Throw a splash of blue or green or both into your workspace. Science indicates that the colours blue and green increase calm, attention and clarity, enhancing the brain’s ability to brainstorm and think out of the box. The colour green is especially effective for increasing visual creativity.
Keep a Creativity Journal
Always carry a small notebook with you so you can record any ideas or thoughts. Creativity is a game of filtering through all your ideas for the one that truly works for you. A journal can help you follow your creative process and serve as a source for future inspirations.
Neuroscience draws a connection between mind and body health with research that shows aerobic exercise triggers the release of neuro-chemicals, which lift mood, sharpen focus, improve memory, lower stress, and help guard the brain from the effects of aging.
Get a Good Night’s Sleep
A good night’s rest is essential for overall well-being; it allows the mind and body to rest and restore, which boosts the immune system. Proper sleep (experts recommend 7-8 hours per night), also helps with weight management. It increases the hormone leptin, which regulates metabolism and appetite.
Nourish Your Brain and Body
Eat in a respectful, conscious manner that supports your mind, body, and spirit. For optimum wellness, strive for a well-balanced diet drawn from a wide variety of foods that make you feel nourished and satisfied. Include foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids, such as cold water, fatty fishes (mackerel, salmon, black cod, herring, sardines, and anchovies), nuts and seeds (walnuts, chia seeds, hemp seeds, and ground flaxseeds), fermented soy (natto, miso, and tempeh) and eggs. Omega-3 fatty acids benefit the heart, protect normal brain function, and promote good mental health.
Are you ready to boost and fuel your creative well-being?