Guest Blog Post by Sharni-Marie Barney
One of the challenges facing a lot of us today is the lack of “space” that is available in the day-to-day craziness that we now call life. With constant notifications vying for our attention, media oozing out of every device and expectations from colleagues, bosses, friends and families that we are always “on” it is near impossible to find the time or the location that is needed to think. And not just think, but process, create, discover and mull over new ideas.
Creativity is an essential element in all forms of work and life. Without it everything becomes monotonous and tired:
Businesses start to fail due to lack of innovation and fresh inspiration.
Writers lose momentum and regular writing habits become bygone concepts.
The artists’ “muse” vanishes.
Relationships become uninteresting.
Passion becomes a long lost fantasy replaced by “the grind”.
I think you get my point.
Here’s a few thoughts to consider:
- Recognise the need for creative space – This might be the first time you have thought about the need for constructive “time out”. Perhaps you are a professional caught up in high demand business. You need it. Believe me. When was the last time you stepped back and had a new idea to take your business forward? Build a small portion of time into your monthly schedule to escape the noise and see where it takes you.
- Record your thoughts – Carry a notebook with you or download an app on your phone to capture the creative inspiration when it comes to you.
- Get out of routine – Routine is such a great tool for being efficient and highly effective. However, I do find that routine limits me creatively. Drive a different way to work. Go to a different café for your morning coffee. Do something out of the ordinary. See how it unlocks the old grey matter.
- Escape to nature – there is something so grounding about being in the middle of a great big forest. Or walking along a beach that goes on forever. Or climbing to the top of a mountain. The fresh air and the open space will loosen the chains around your creative genius and thoughts will once again be free to roam.
- Travel – One of the greatest sources of inspiration for me is travelling. Not just to go and take photos of a lovely destination, but travel that offers a lot of “down time” where I don’t have to talk to anyone, I don’t have to be anyway, and most importantly, I am relatively unplugged from my digital networks (Yes.. ouch!).
- Book a retreat – This is a short holiday, even a weekend away from everything that you call normal life, and switch off with the focus of pure devotion to diving into the creative pool. This doesn’t have to be expensive or a pre-organised event. All you need is a great place to stay that is out of the hustle and bustle, some great food and wine, a good pair of walking shoes (exercise fills the mind with oxygen and gets it going), and something to record all your amazing revelations (notebook or laptop).
Right now I am writing this from the deck of a stunning accommodation property on Norfolk Island in the South Pacific – A Frame Chalets @ Mokutu. This property is the perfect location in my opinion for your next creative retreat. Great rooms, a common area that can be used for small group workshops (how about a creative retreat for your team?) a hire car for when you want to get out and about, and absolutely stunning gardens with plenty of nooks to sit and think/write. If you are needing some time out, contact them about what they can offer you for your next creative escape.
Interested in a South Pacific 2016 Bloggers Retreat? Sign up to be on the mailing list here: eepurl.com/bKQiEb
Follow me on Twitter: @mariesharni