Step One: Rest
I often tell my Creative Writing students that they should be well-rested in order to be their most creative. Certainly, we can all preform under pressure when we are highly caffeinated, sleep deprived, and tense. Stressed out states of being, however, do not allow for the miracles of divinely inspired communication to flow through us effortlessly. Meditation and connecting with the love that is available for each of us is a much better way to open to great ideas. In peaceful states of being, we might receive messages from higher states of consciousness and our creativity might be more inspired. If you have ever noticed how some of your greatest ideas show up just before you fall asleep, you can understand that when the worried mind lets go of its grip on us, the great, inspired thoughts begin to flow through us. Problems naturally work themselves out.
Keep a journal and pen on your nightstand and return to these ideas later in the day. The ideas in your dreams or just before you fall asleep might become poems, stories, novels or a simple answer to a question. Be receptive and open to great ideas, and more of these ideas will be sent your way.
Step Two: Play
Go where your joy resides. Adults do not enjoy life as much as children because we often forget how to play. Play can mean many different things to different people. Most of the time, exercise and time in nature can put us in a positive state of mind. However, if you have a problem to work out, try addressing this problem from many different directions. Don’t censor wild ideas, and try following unexpected thoughts to see where they lead you.
During graduate school, I worked full time teaching seniors in high school. The long hours at work didn’t leave me much time to be creative on one of my twenty-page essays. Mid-way through a particular essay, I decided that I needed to have more fun with the research and wrote something that entertained me. I stopped thinking about writing for my professor and followed my own joy. This turned out to be one of my better essays. Even if playing around doesn’t lead to a great product, it is important to notice what ideas and activities bring more joy into our lives.
Step Three: Plan
If you are an organized, detail oriented person, this should not be a difficult step for you. Write out a one-year, three-year, and five-year plan for a certain goal. Simply writing down a plan increases the odds of accomplishing this goal. If you have a book idea, write an outline. Even if you amend the outline and completely change the book later, a plan can still be an important step and a great step during the revision stages.
If you are not a detail oriented person, take a deep breath and do what you can each day toward your goal. Imagine the repressed side of yourself taking control and dealing with the details. Make the details more interesting or fun in some way. Offer yourself a reward for accomplishing things you usually put off for later. Ask your angels for help and call on God to help you. There is no need to stress over the details. Jump in and enjoy the journey. The sooner you jump in and work on the things you are putting off, the quicker you will realize that the process isn’t as difficult as you imagined it to be.
Good luck! May your best dreams make it into the world soon.