10 Tips for Igniting Your Creativity

10 Tips for Igniting Your Creativity

First of all... know you are creative.

Everyone is creative in their own special way in their own special medium. I've met lots of people who believed they weren't creative. I've never met anyone who wasn't.

Think outside the box

No idea is too outlandish! Do you want to reproduce the past or forge a new path? Are you going to keep doing what's already been written about or will you do something that will be written about? The best creativity has something refreshing about it, even if offensive.

eternal cross abstract mixed media on canvas nakedpastor david hayward

(This painting, Eternal Cross, was a painting that resulted from me experimenting with new kinds of paint and a new abstract style. Click on the image to see it in my store.)

Make time

Stop the craziness and plant yourself before your palette. It won't come to you. Leisure is a key ingredient in creativity. Even philosophers know that leisure is necessary for creative thinking. Some of my most creative ideas come to me over my morning coffee or an evening scotch.

Don't care what people will think.

That will kill creativity on the spot. If I listened to my critics you wouldn't be reading this and I wouldn't have written it. Everything offends someone. Learn that quick and then ignore it.

Don't do it for money.

Creativity can be drowned out by monetary ambitions. If your art sells, great. If you sell your soul, not so great. Money poisons motives.


Writing? Put pen to paper before you have a thought. Painting? Throw it. Sculpture? Smash it. Philosophizing? Don't sleep for 2 days. Choreography? Drink wine then video it nude. Try something. Anything!

Don't be afraid of mistakes or waste.

My painting dramatically improved when I stopped caring about how much paint or paper I used. Some of the best symphonies, paintings, choreographs, architecture, etc., were created after totally scrapping previous attempts.

Explore new possibilities.

If someone told me I'd be cartooning every day I wouldn't have believed it. I did my first one in fear and trembling. Now I can't stop. I plan on trying new things soon because I don't like ruts. But I love wells. And creativity is a fathomless well. Once you tap in, you'll know what I mean.

Enjoy it!

Creativity is fascinating and fun. Especially when it materializes. Although there can be excruciating work involved in the process, a deep feeling of satisfaction often accompanies it, even if it upsets everything around you. You may feel like Chuck Noland in the movie Cast Away: "I make fire!" while you beat your chest in triumphant joy. Well, I have.

Risk exposing yourself

Your creations are your babies. They are part of yourself, borne out of your own heart and passions, and they say something important about you. Putting your creations out there is like putting yourself out there. And even though you will get praised as well as shot at, I think you must do it... for you, for me, and for our world. 

Related Blog Posts on Creativity 

The Importance of Being Creative During Faith Deconstruction
Why You Need Nature in your Creative Process
Embracing Creativity: An Artist Trapped in a Pastor's Body
Can Art Help Improve Your Mental health?

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