Do you ever have those days where you have endless great ideas, you’re focused, have lots of energy, and creativity seems to be easily accessible? Then, in contrast, days where you just ‘aren’t feeling it’? Nothing you do works, everything is a struggle and it feels as if your mind is dry?
When you work in a creative world, you get paid to be creative and need to deliver on demand. I can’t wait around for inspiration and creativity to magically appear. I need to be intentional about cultivating a lifestyle and an everyday routine that allows me to be creative at a moments notice.
I believe creativity is a mindset, and not an activity. And more often than not, those days where I’m not ‘feeling it’ I have slacked off on my routine, and the stress of falling behind seeps in.
For me, like everyone, I need a balance of work and play. But, I can’t fully be present at a friends BBQ if I know that I’m behind on editing, or I’m keeping a client waiting. I need to be intentional about my work days, so that I finish things…and most importantly so I can recharge and completely relax with family and friends…in order to be the most creative, focused and organised photographer I can be to my clients.
Recently, I’ve been listening to Todd Henry’s podcast, ‘The Accidental Creative‘, he’s an amazing author and business coach. Todd explains how to establish effective practices to ‘unleash’ your creative potential, so you can be creative at a moments notice. He focuses on 5 key elements to create a practical method for discovering your personal creative rhythm and routine.
1) Focus: Begin with your end goal in mind.
2) Relationships: Build stimulating relationships and ideas will follow.
3) Energy: Manage it as your most valuable resource.
4) Stimuli: Structure the right “inputs” to maximise creative output.
5) Hours: Focus on effectiveness, not efficiency.
I strongly believe that in order to be the best version of yourself, to consistently create interesting work that excites you, it’s essential to have a regular routine in your work day and stick to it! The two seem like polar opposites right? Creativity and routine? But I believe they are unmistakably connected.
You need routine and structure in your life, in order to be creative.
My routine includes quiet time in the morning, exercise, endless cups of tea, dance breaks…etc. The point is NOT to fill up your days, which will leave you more overwhelmed from when you started. The point is to intentionally create space in your days, to have quiet time with no distractions, to move your body, so you can do your work with more energy…so that you can be the BEST version of yourself to your clients, your family, and your friends.
I’ve talked about my routine and ‘ideal day’ here on the blog. I work from home, so I realise I have the luxury to create my own routine and rhythm in my days. We also don’t have kids, so one day this ‘ideal’ day might seem a little too ‘ideal’ and I’ll need to adjust!
What do you think about this? Do you agree you need structure and routine in order to be creative? I’d love to hear from you! xx