Creative Prompt for Getting Unstuck
I toyed with lots of great topics for today’s Creatively blog, and finally this seemed to feel right. I want to give you another creative exercise prompt. The goal of this is to get your creative juices flowing, help you hone in on your unique creative voice, and get unstuck if you are feeling in a rut.
To preface the exercise, I want to tie it into Person Centered Therapy. This is an approach that I use often in sessions. Simply put, the focus is to follow your “organismic valuing process” or your innate sense of happiness, to become “congruent” or your most fulfilled self. The work in this approach focuses on finding other voices creating rules, judgments and external imposed values, and separate these from what organically, intrinsically makes us tick.
In the creative world, part of the building blocks of the creative process is to learn fundamentals, study the “greats” and educate ourselves with the current masters in our creative avenues. We spend time in schools, classes, trainings, online, in libraries, in galleries, at shows and more to absorb, imitate, and learn. At some point as artists, we need to step away from this and find out what is uniquely ours. This is not a simple or a short journey, and I do not mean to minimize it by putting it in basic terms. It can take years and usually is not a static thing. But- where to start?
Like in Person Centered Therapy, I want you to try to find your organismic, innate, voice. What are your tendencies, preferences, lenses? What does your gut tell you to do? This will require you to quiet down right/analytical/educated brain and “feel” into your work. In the creative world what makes you unique- the only thing that stands you apart- is your individual perspective and what comes naturally from you. This is what we want to tap into.
So for this exercise:
Take a moment to try and quiet your inner critic and “committee” of what your work/good work/ any work “should be,” is considered “good,” is considered “fresh,” “relevant,” etc. Close your eyes and feel into the part of yourself that is uniquely and individually you. Embrace and affirm this person. Ask it- “what do you feel?”
Now, preparing and allowing for the work you are about to create to not be you best masterpiece, allow, having settled into your unique sense of self, advise you what to do. Create a piece that is not analytical, educated, skillful, or guided by any other judgments or rules- allow it to create itself based on what organically feels right to you.
I know this is very broad and open! It is supposed to be! If you are an artist, feel into what type of media, what type of marks, what colors, subjects and more “feel” like they belong to you. Continue to check in with yourself to quiet the inner voices trying to dictate your choices for any other reasons. Authors- use a similar approach to choose subject, length, type of writing, words used etc. Musicians- what do your instincts tell you to play? Something harmonic? Pleasing? Discordant? Aggressive? Lyrical? Instrumental? Dancers- release the dictation of steps and styles and allow your body to move in a way that “feels right” to your soul.
If you find yourself frustrated, trying too hard, or going back to learned styles, that is ok. Just find again that inner voice and allow it to come back online and push you into your next choice.
Creatives, I would love for this to be a regular practice- for you to find and tap into your innate creative choices, and let this advise the direction you go with your work. Try this exercise, and let’s talk about it- your voice is valuable and unique- explore it, express it, embrace it!
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is a Creativity Coach, Creativity Counselor and Professional Artist in Sykesville, Maryland. She provides Online Creativity Counseling in Maryland and Virginia, and Online Creativity Coaching throughout the USA, Canada and the UK.
The information provided in this blog is from my own clinical experiences and training. It is intended to supplement your clinical care. Never make major life changes before consulting with your treatment team. If you are unsure of your safety or wellbeing, do not hesitate to get help immediately.