Fasting for Creatives
So yesterday I told you how I was using my creative pursuits to help me through fasting. It got me thinking though are there any of the techniques of fasting that could be used to help Creatives.
I think there are four stages to a Fast –
1. Purge – like cleansing your body of toxins in a physical fast, try to expel your old habits or preconceptions about Creativity.
2. Renew – look for new ways to approach your Creative impulse. Be open to new possibiltites.
3. Recommit – commit to bringing these new approaches into your life for a set period of time.
4. Flourish – watch as new ideas come to you, unexpected paths are taken and everything feels exciting and new again.
I think a well executed Fast should leave you feeling refreshed, revitalized and humming with inspiration.
A ‘Creative Fast’ makes me think of not actually doing anything creative for a set period of time. Could this be helpful? Would it even be possible?! Hmm, maybe.
I often have fallow period where my creative spark seems to go underground for a bit, regroup and then reemerge in time, raring to go. A bit like Winter before the Spring. Maybe I’ve been working it all too hard and not taking time to refill the aul’ inspiration bank with juicy images, sounds, colours, experiences. Maybe I’ve just been neglecting to do creative things that get me really excited and instead been making things to order or because they’re popular.
By allowing myself time to just relax and not force the making of things, I give myself space to breathe and reboot. This isn’t always possible in life, especially if your Art is also your job, but even then blocking out some time for yourself to just Be is always important. Everybody needs a holiday sometimes.
A really useful way I Fast sometimes is by have a Media Blackout. I found this technique while reading Julia Cameron’s ‘An Artist’s Way’ and it blew my mind when I read it. You basically just absorb no media for an entire day/week/whatever. No TV, films, books, radio, CDs, advertisings (this is a really hard one), magazines, internet and anything else you can think of. Then sit back and see the time and space created in your life. See what activities you are inspired to do instead.
Stuff gets fixed.
Things get knitted.
Furniture is rearranged.
Walks are taken.
Friends are called.
Food is savoured.
It’s amazing and refreshing, like a holiday for your senses. You start to notice how bombarded we are in life by advertising, music in the background, text everywhere, constant stimulation. This kind of Fast is a soothing way to unwind your senses from the hectic pace of everyday living.
You could set aside your most comfortable, go-to craft for a month…mine would be knitting…and see what other ways your creativity decides to manifest itself.
Maybe I would start book-making or creating beautifully iced cupcakes or finally learn how to quilt. Maybe I would get my paints and canvas out for the first time in years and take my sketchpad for a walk. Writing about this is making me feel excited…I might have to actually try this one and report back to you!
~ Is there any ways in which you Fast to help your Creativity?
~ Do you even think Fasting is appropriate for Creatives and the Arts or is an area where depriving yourself for any reason is not productive?