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How to Find Your Creative Spark and Become a Better Writer

How to Find Your Creative Spark and Become a Better Writer

Although every piece of art is food for the soul in its own magical way, I find writing to be a very challenging branch when it comes to two important aspects – perceiving it and creating it. A painting is something you can see, music is something you can hear, but text is something that needs to be developed in your mind while you’re reading.

As a writer, you need to make sure that those mental images that are evoked in a reader’s mind while they are reading your work are interesting, to say the least. It sounds really difficult, because it is, but it is not impossible to learn. The fact that you’re not a particularly gifted singer doesn’t mean that you can’t develop a lovely singing voice if you invest your efforts that way. That goes the same for being a good writer.

Create a Productive Ritual

In order to become a good writer, you need to practice and be very determined about it. You should treat it as if it were any other job and write every single day. I know that creativity isn’t an inexhaustible source, and it can be very challenging for a writer to keep their focus and transfer it onto a blank piece of paper or screen in front of them, but that’s exactly what you need to do.

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Inspiration can be found even in the smallest things around you – you just need to awaken that curiosity in you and allow it to take you places. You probably consider it to be a bit contradictory to have a working schedule and daydream at the same time, but you need to harmonize these two things in order to create a piece with a beginning and an end.

That is why you need to create a sort of office, a comfortable place in your home (or in a mountain cottage, wherever) where you’re comfortable, undisturbed, and focused, so you can let your mind work.

Have a Notepad with You at All Times

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    Get a little notepad, or a smartphone for that matter, whichever you find more suitable. When your creativity starts boiling and you start working on a piece, your mind will keep a part of it dedicated to your work, so you will get various ideas all the time, whether you’re trying to come up with something, or you’re waiting in line at the grocery store.

    I made that same mistake of being absolutely certain that I’ll remember something and that I don’t really need to write it down (being a genius and all) and a thought – I can’t really remember if was truly brilliant or not – simply vanished. Therefore, write down everything that pops up in your mind, no matter if you consider it silly or not, because you’ll find its purpose in time.

    Break Your Fears and Just Write

    When you’re in a rut, or to use a more popular term, when faced with the notorious writer’s block, caused by lack of inspiration or because you just realized how dumb everything you wrote is (we all go through this, perhaps because we’re a bit theatrical as a group) you need to resist all your instincts that tell you to burn all your work in a huge fire and do the very opposite – write.[1]

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    Even if it’s a complete waste of paper and even if it doesn’t make any sense – write. That’s the only way to get back on the right track while wasting minimal amounts of time. And only after you get sick of the fact that you’re not capable of writing anything with a single bit of sense can you stop, but only to find ways to upgrade your skills.

    Therefore, get your favorite book and start reading, go online and search for inspirational pieces of music or some other form of art, learn about new ways to form your sentences by setting yourself on a quest to explore different writing styles, etc. The worst thing you can do is stare blankly into that wall in front of you and question your decision about becoming a writer.

    Isolate Yourself from Distractions

      It’s very important that you protect yourself from all disturbances. This may be something that your friends and family will find difficult to accept, but it’s quite important for your career to stay determined and focused – and the only way to do that is through isolation.[2] I’m not suggesting that you move and start living in the middle of a forest or a desert (which actually isn’t a bad idea at all), but be very specific about your work hours – it will be easier for you and everyone around you if you stay persistent about this.

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      Plan Ahead and Create Constructions

      It’s not impossible, but it is very difficult to write a valuable piece without planning it ahead and doing so in fine detail. In order to be capable of creating a story that’s clear and concise, you yourself need to know parts of that story so you don’t lose track along the way. When you create an outline, have in mind that it can be subjected to changes, if you feel the need for them as your story envelops.

      It is hard and it doesn’t get easier with every new piece. I know all of this sounds like a torture and you’re probably wondering whether it’s worth the trouble at all, but it really is. After you complete your first story or a book and realize your mind is capable of creating a valuable piece of art, you’ll get addicted to writing and you should – the world is always in need for great artists and you could be the next one.

      Featured photo credit: https://unsplash.com/photos/QdRnZlzYJPA via pexels.com

      Reference

      [1]The New Yorker: How to Beat Writer’s Block
      [2]Goins, Writer: How to Stay Focused Writing

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      Last Updated on September 20, 2018

      How to Stay Calm and Cool When You Are Extremely Stressful

      How to Stay Calm and Cool When You Are Extremely Stressful

      Being in a hurry all the time drains your energy. Your work and routine life make you feel overwhelmed. Getting caught up in things beyond your control stresses you out…

      If you’d like to stay calm and cool in stressful situations, put the following 8 steps into practice:

      1. Breathe

      The next time you’re faced with a stressful situation that makes you want to hurry, stop what you’re doing for one minute and perform the following steps:

      • Take five deep breaths in and out (your belly should come forward with each inhale).
      • Imagine all that stress leaving your body with each exhale.
      • Smile. Fake it if you have to. It’s pretty hard to stay grumpy with a goofy grin on your face.

      Feel free to repeat the above steps every few hours at work or home if you need to.

      2. Loosen up

      After your breathing session, perform a quick body scan to identify any areas that are tight or tense. Clenched jaw? Rounded shoulders? Anything else that isn’t at ease?

      Gently touch or massage any of your body parts that are under tension to encourage total relaxation. It might help to imagine you’re in a place that calms you: a beach, hot tub, or nature trail, for example.

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      3. Chew slowly

      Slow down at the dinner table if you want to learn to be patient and lose weight. Shoveling your food down as fast as you can is a surefire way to eat more than you need to (and find yourself with a bellyache).

      Be a mindful eater who pays attention to the taste, texture, and aroma of every dish. Chew slowly while you try to guess all of the ingredients that were used to prepare your dish.

      Chewing slowly will also reduce those dreadful late-night cravings that sneak up on you after work.

      4. Let go

      Cliche as it sounds, it’s very effective.

      The thing that seems like the end of the world right now?

      It’s not. Promise.

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      Stressing and worrying about the situation you’re in won’t do any good because you’re already in it, so just let it go.

      Letting go isn’t easy, so here’s a guide to help you:

      21 Things To Do When You Find It Hard To Let Go

      5. Enjoy the journey

      Focusing on the end result can quickly become exhausting. Chasing a bold, audacious goal that’s going to require a lot of time and patience? Split it into several mini-goals so you’ll have several causes for celebration.

      Stop focusing on the negative thoughts. Giving yourself consistent positive feedback will help you grow patience, stay encouraged, and find more joy in the process of achieving your goals.

      6. Look at the big picture

      The next time you find your stress level skyrocketing, take a deep breath, and ask yourself:

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      Will this matter to me…

      • Next week?
      • Next month?
      • Next year?
      • In 10 years?

      Hint: No, it won’t.

      I bet most of the stuff that stresses you wouldn’t matter the next week, maybe not even the next day.

      Stop agonizing over things you can’t control because you’re only hurting yourself.

      7. Stop demanding perfection of yourself

      You’re not perfect and that’s okay. Show me a person who claims to be perfect and I’ll show you a dirty liar.

      Demanding perfection of yourself (or anybody else) will only stress you out because it just isn’t possible.

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      8. Practice patience every day

      Below are a few easy ways you can practice patience every day, increasing your ability to remain calm and cool in times of stress:

      • The next time you go to the grocery store, get in the longest line.
      • Instead of going through the drive-thru at your bank, go inside.
      • Take a long walk through a secluded park or trail.

      Final thoughts

      Staying calm in stressful situations is possible, all you need is some daily practice.

      Taking deep breaths and eat mindfully are some simple ways to train your brain to be more patient. But changing the way you think of a situation and staying positive are most important in keeping cool whenever you feel overwhelmed and stressful.

      Featured photo credit: Brooke Cagle via unsplash.com

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