Since I’ve been wittering on about process a bit this month, this post deserves a rerun. It’s very easy to get stuck in the midwinter doldrums if you live in the northern hemisphere. It’s grey, it’s gloomy, we don’t want to do anything but binge-watch DVDs and hibernate with cheese. Everything feels slow, like walking through treacle. But there are remedies…
Sometimes your creativity gets stuck, chickens. Like a pill you tried to swallow without water. It just sits there, uncomfortably present and yet not actually doing you any good. What’s the solution? Well, it is seldom TIME. You can’t just sit and wait for it to move on its own. You’d go mad. It would be distracting and possibly painful.
But you can help it along. Here are a few ways to shake your creativity loose and turn your writing on its head. This presupposes that you will be sitting down and WRITING YOUR WAY THROUGH THE DIFFICULTY AS WELL. I put that in caps so you’d know I felt shouty about it. Blocks have to be gotten through, not gotten around. I believe in using every possible tool to help you beat it down. Here are a few of my favorites:
*Get up. Get out. Once you’re done writing, get out of the house. This is the opposite of what I usually do because I am a lazy person, but it WORKS. Getting out of the house and interacting with people changes your energy. Sitting in your house can cause it to sit in one spot and stagnate. Free the chi, people! Go to the library to work or a coffee shop. Write in the park. Take a walk. Go shopping. Hit a museum exhibit. Whatever it takes to get you out of your rhythm.
*Brush your teeth with the non-dominant hand. In fact, do everything you can safely do with the non-dominant hand. This forces new neural pathways to be forged. (Actually, I’m not at all sure about that last bit, but it sounds good, doesn’t it?) It will shake you out of your routine and cause you to approach everything differently.
*Find a new way. Turn off your GPS and plot a new course to an old destination. If you always go the highway, take the city streets instead. If you always take a particular bus, see if there’s an alternate route on the subway. Try parking your car a block over and walking. Just do SOMETHING different.
*Wear a new color. Nothing beige. This should be self-explanatory.
*Do something childish, or rather childlike. Play with clay, with coloring books, beads or paints.