Unlocking the Creative Process


This morning, I was pleased to happen upon a blog series initiated by Darrell at This is Me Thinking. Whether it has to do with developing a teaching, a blog post, writing a devotional, visioneering a retreat, helping a child with a diorama, setting the table for a party… creative muscles need to be flexed. There are times when these muscles get weak and even feel like they have atrophied. It was a good prompt to get me thinking about what needs to happen in order to get creative about some things coming up in the Fall. So, here is what I know about my creative process {which clearly needs to be better organized and formulated with some order}.

Being a working mom requires multi tasking but in order to get anything done, focused time is a must. For the inevitable moments of busyness, I always have a notebook handy or Evernote within reach. This gives me access to space where thoughts, ideas and inspiration are recorded to be further developed when I actually get some focused time for a project. If It’s not recorded, it will disappear.

Music is a must. Ever since high school, when I’ve needed to buckle down and write, Ive needed a secluded space with classical music turned on, taking my fingers to the keyboard. This practice has carried me through college and throughout every job that requires writing. Now, occasionally I will switch it up with some jazz or worship music. I’m pretty selective though because music can also distract me with lyrics.

Lately, a visual muse has helped as well. I will visit sites like Pinterest or Creation Swap to find images of real life, art, books, people and music to spark an idea or develop a plan to bring an idea to fruition. For example, this is a teaching on “expectation” waiting to happen:

People. People are so inspiring. Getting insights from others, seeing the Word of God, and getting glimpses of the ordinary through different eyes brings much more richness to my own perspective. Another beautiful reason why God places us in community. People also help me get my ideas into action. Without being able to verbally process and tap into gifts other people have, my ideas would just be… ideas.

A change of scenery is also beneficial. Every summer our family takes a trip to Yosemite. Being in the grandeur of God’s creation always stirs up ideas. But when I can’t get to Yosemite, a new coffee shop or a walk by the beach can also get things in motion.

Finally, there is nothing more prompting, more inspiring, more edifying, more encouraging and more grounding than the revelation of God through His Spirit and Word. To read the story of the Divine Creator, experiencing His goodness, reading and seeing that God still creates, develops, doesn’t give up on, produces and works through imperfect people never gets old. It gives me courage to actually take the steps of making ideas into reality, helping me realize my ideas are not my own, the vision should be shared and the outcome belongs to Him.

What does your creative process look like?

This post is part of Darrell Vesterfelt’s series in the personal creative process. You can read more and contribute your own here.

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