Creativity Cross Training - 12 Moves to Up Your Art, Part 3

Your creativity is like a muscle. To increase its strength, you must use it. Just how cross-training improves your fitness workout, cross-training your creativity will make you more agile, limber and strong, and your imagination will improve.

This week we continue with 4 more ways to cross train your creative muscles. You will discover new exercises to up your game and enhance your curiosity.

9. Change the soundtrack

The internal self-talk. In your mind you say between 300 and 1000 words every minute. That’s a lot of chatter. Make the words positive. It all comes down to the stories you tell yourself. If you say negative words like, I can’t stand this for one more minute, you are more likely to quit than if you say I got this, or I can keep going for a while. My brother used to say that if it weren’t for bad luck, he wouldn’t have any luck at all. Over the years he had those around him telling the same story. You know what, he was unlucky. He saw all the wrong things that happened to him. I would point out the good things, but he couldn’t see them. Every day I tell myself that I am the luckiest person alive. Good things come to me. It doesn’t mean that bad things don’t happen, they do, but I look first at all the good things that happen.

10. Creativity can be...

Leadership, communication, exploring, questioning or even knowing when to stop.

Creativity may be painful. Embrace the uncertainty. Yes, you need confidence, your internal words are positive, but don’t delude yourself. Your control comes from within, not from external events. You are not a victim of your fate. When a boulder falls in front of you, find an alternative path around it or even better yet, discover a way to use or incorporate the boulder in an innovative way.

11. Fake it

Did you know that smiling will improve a bad mood? Try it. Smile for no reason. It just takes a few minutes, and your chemistry begins to change. Now is that really faking it. I like to think that knowing how to start the engine is the key to successfully tapping into your internal sense of control. This can reduce stress which allows your creativity to flow.

12. Creativity is as necessary as breathing

We are born knowing how to breathe, but learning the rest takes some effort. You crawl and then stand up before you take a few steps and then you fall. You keep picking yourself up and before you know it walking is as easy as breathing. Exercising your creative muscle may be painful if you haven’t used it in a long time, but it is like walking. Use it and it will become natural, graceful and easy. Be willing to fall and then pick yourself up again. Think of it like doing pushups. It may be painful, but it will take you beyond your own pain and birth you into knowing yourself. Be willing to fail and then success rewards your efforts.