Creating = Energy

*This article is part of a series called ‘Stoke the Fire’, which explores the creative process and attempts to understand how and why we are driven to create. I would love to hear your opinions on creativity and ideas for future posts.*

CREATING = ENERGY!

Tapping into a source of Renewable, Sustainable, Caffeine-less Energy

by Brenda Starr, via Flickr Creative Commons

Ugh! It’s Monday and I have a busy day ahead, full of previously procrastinated tasks, writing, cleaning, maybe some yoga and an album launch to attend in Belfast this evening. I’m definitely one of those kinds of people that thinking about what I have to do makes me feel TIRED. Like I have no energy for it all. I’m 25. Ridiculous, I’m sure.

I was taught in school that energy can’t be created or destroyed but moves from form to form, object to object. So I can’t ‘make’ my own energy. I have to find myself a power supply that I can relay on.

Commonly used, and recommended,  energy sources  are…

  • caffeine,
  • drugs,
  • drink,
  • food,
  • sex,
  • money – getting it and spending it…

…but they are pretty unstable energy sources. They are addictive, or their potency wears off with use, or they rely entirely on another person (always an unstable source). All listed together they may seem like obvious enemies of true energy but they are so subtly present in all our lives, supported by popular culture and are easy to get your hands on, that I would be surprised if you didn’t over-indulge in at least one regularly.

As creative beings we are GIFTED with a limitless, abundant, completely environmentally friendly source of energy because when we create we are energized! Have you noticed? ‘Course you have. Everyone has had that buzz after a job well done.

by rpongsaj, via Flickr Creative Commons

As the One True Energy/The Ultimate Creativity/The Muse/Whatever moves through us and inspires us (did you know that word the ‘inspire’ literally means to breathe through or into?!…breathing inspiration and energy into you) it also energizes us. It’s a perk of the job, a little present left behind after the Art has been made. We are revitalized by an energy source that is so pure, healthy, life-affirming and generous that coffee becomes a pretty redundant pick-me-up.

It’s free, clean, highly addictive but only in the most positive way, driving you to abundant happiness, rock-solid self-esteem and joyful being. Well, that’s what I’ve found :) You may feel ‘spent’ after creating something you’re proud of but I bet you also feel satisfaction that radiates from your head to your toes! You sleep better and on waking you feel like a new person, bright-eyes and bushy-tailed.

by kelsey_lovefusionphoto, via Flickr Creative Commons

However, in order to sustain this energy source there are three things I’ve found I have to do to keep the good time rolling…

~ SLEEP! – this is NON-NEGOTIABLE, and ironically usually the first thing that goes out the window with me. You need to give yourself the opportunity to absorb and process what has happened, soak up this energy into your being and store it up for whenever you need it.

~ Fill the Well – you have to commit to deliberately and regularly keeping your well of inspiration topped up. You can’t mine your resources ruthlessly without replacing what you use. For ideas on how to do this read 101 Ways to Spark Inspiration…

~ Keep Working! – Trust the process and know that some work is never meant to be seen. You make it to just get the crap out, practice and make way for the good stuff. TRUST!

You hear about artists panicking when they lose the faith in their creative energy. They forget how sustaining and whole-hearted it is but they also crave it, live for it. So they try to find it before the creation is made, usually tapping into our list of unstable sources above. So looms the dreaded ‘Block’. Best way to get through it? Keep making stuff. Do the thing that seems the hardest.

I still like a latte. I love when I can earn money doing what I feel passionately about and then enjoy spending it. I still take great support and solace from the love of my friends and family and partner. However, I am under no illusions that these sources alone cannot get me through my day, through my life. I know where I can I can tap into something that will never desert me.

~ What has your experience of creating and its ‘perks’ been? Do you feel energised afterwards?

~ Do you have a different perspective on the creative process? I would love, love, LOVE to hear…

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15 responses to “Creating = Energy

  1. Great piece. Thoroughly enjoyed it.

    Creative energy as well as physical energy has always been a problem for me. I very much group the two together although that may not be the case for everybody. When I’m active and productive (if you count half a day of housework as productive), I’m more likely to be in a better place to write. Having said that though, different creativity comes to me at different times.

    Poetry for example just pops into my head. No thought, prep work or energy required. I also find it harder to write when I’m in a loving relationship and content. Infact, I am easily amused and am often content. Therefore, I don’t feel the need to write 95% of the time. It’s kinda the bittersweet side for me.

    Plus, my favourite ‘perk’ is simply the satisfaction of creation, the ability to invoke thought and evoke emotion.

    B

    • Definitely! Creation for the sake of creating should really be our bottom line, so to speak!

      My other half pointed out to me also that I didn’t include exercise as a method of energizing…probably because I find it an effort to motivate myself to do it…but for him it is his ‘creative’ space, his time to energize!

      I find meditation very energizing as well, though in a very different way…doesn’t necessarily get the creative juices flowing but it helps me get on with life, get on with ‘doing’.

      Thanks so much for commenting!!

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  3. This is so timely in terms of what is happening in my life… I have been forced by physical circumstance to just stop. For several weeks, no work, no constantly doing, nothing at all that involves expending physical energy; but my brain still works, and it has given me much needed space to think, to ponder and to imagine. I have recently re-discovered through another blog, the art of writing for the sake of it, not a diary, or even journaling as such, but what the author and I call Morning Pages. I have committed myself to 30 days of writing four pages (and in longhand – turns out this is important!) before I get out of bed in the morning. Writing for me, has always been cathartic, but now it is becoming devotional. And by day 5 all I can say is wow! Maybe it’s a response to the enforced inactivity, maybe my soul needed the opportunity to recover just as much as my body did, but I have been energised to create, but differently this time, because I don’t feel the need for my creations to be seen – they are almost entirely for my own benefit, and mostly have to do with the creation of space rather than things…
    The by product is though, that things are being made, painted, written, and despatched; and I am becoming more enlightened, mystically, emotionally and psychologically. Creativity is good for the soul – we are creative beings, it’s how we express our connection to divinity, to the Source. Creativity is prayer….

    • ‘Creativity is Prayer’

      I couldn’t agree more, Michelle! I’m so glad this article has come at such an amazing period of creative awakening for you. Have you been reading a Julia Cameron book? I’ve always meant to really commit to doing the morning pages but I find that I fall by the wayside after a week or so. You’ll have to tell me your secret :)

      Thanks for commenting!

  4. Perfect reading for me at the moment! Feeling somewhat creatively marooned and yes, flat-lining……..in fact, that has become the norm for me, and that can’t be good:(
    So glad you wrote this, Parisa-I was about to hit the bottle!!

    • As strange as it might sound the best way out of a ‘flat-lining’ scenario is to do something! Could you maybe be a bit dry inspiration wise? Maybe you could try to get a little juice into your everyday life for a few weeks and then attempt making something, just for yourself.

      Thanks for commenting, and let us know how it all works out for you!

  5. Ha, just came back to note that Morning Pages is indeed an inspiration of Julia Cameron! I discovered it through another series of links though, and try as I may, I cannot track down the blogger who brought it to my attention… Hopefully my gratitude will find its own way through the ether to warm his heart anyway!
    If I have a secret to tell, it will be once I complete the 30 days! I’ll get back to you xx

  6. I agree, thinking about how much I have to do tends to stall my productivity. I also tend to get easily distracted by all the “possibilities” and that dilutes the creative fire. I find if I make a list and set deadlines for myself, then watching those little things get crossed off is hugely motivating and invigorating. Yes, the act of creating is sublimely satisfying… nothing can top it! Love the new comment section here!

    • Absolutely Erin! It’s about finding what little ‘rewards’ or motivators really drive you forward with your work…I’m like you, I love a task crossed off a list – it feels wonderful! But I find it really disheartening when I have lists of things undone, so I try to balance it up. It’s all about finding what works for you!

      Thanks so much for joining in the conversation…it’s been really insightful!

  7. Pingback: What Inspires You? | LightingLittleFires

  8. I love this piece as well as the three part series on sparking inspiration. Very valuable and thought provoking – all of these. And I thank you!

    I do believe the secret of keeping creativity alive is to do exactly what you said “Keep making stuff”. Don’t wait for inspiration. Don’t let fear or imagined failure or judgment get in the way. Just start the process of making. Take the first step. And once you have, the process of making has begun again.

    I have proved this theory to myself over and over and over! I have felt uninspired, felt the fear of the unknown, worried I wouldn’t be “good enough” – but I have taken the first step of beginning. That was all I needed to overcome and for inspiration and creativity to flow. I encourage anyone to try it – you will see it is true!

  9. Pam, thanks so much for sharing your experience…it’s one thing for me to write about these things, but it something else entirely when you hear about someone’s life experience. It is so inspiring to know that these simple steps have worked so well for your in your creative life!

  10. Dear Parisa,

    I love our telepathic link! I have one to add to your list which is really just the same as #2–“Fill the Well”. Really amazing people, people who are fully invested in their own creativity fill my well. People like you.

    So when can we skype?

    xoxo
    Adena

  11. Alla Petcheniouk

    this is so true!! sometimes I drift away from this truth and it is amazing when I am reminded if it by your article! thank you, lovely!! looking froward to the course!!

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