Some time ago I was introduced to a wonderful book and creative tool, called the Artist's Way, by Julia Cameron. Basically, the book is a DIY course in discovering and recovering one's creative self.
The two basic tools that Miss Cameron teaches us to make use of is "The Morning Pages" and "The Artist's Date". What exactly are the Morning Pages and the Artist's Date?
The morning pages are three pages of long hand written material that you are asked to do each and every day.... better known in the book as "brain drain", and it's just what it sounds like. Three pages of writing down whatever comes to mind until you have filled three pages worth. Unless you are someone that really likes to write, cultivating the habit to write the morning pages every day may be a bit difficult at first. But once you do.... its worth its weight in gold.You will be amazed at the things that will come spilling forth from your brain on to your pages.
.... And the Artist's Dates? This for me is the fun stuff! Once a week you plan and take your inner Artist(yourself) on a play date and you don't share the experience with anyone else. Its meant to stimulate and cultivate your creativity by exposing you to new and different experiences, and reminding you of the things you really love and covet. Excursions and experiences can be as simple as coloring or doodling in a color book, taking a lengthy nature walk, or taking yourself to a museum or exploring some experience that you have always wanted to, but for whatever reason never have given yourself the permission to do so before. There really are no limits to the possibilities for Artist's Dates.
This wonderful book also covers several important topics such as synchronicity, jealousy, criticism and integrity, just to mention a few. It explores the different avenues in which we, as artists, find to block ourselves creatively and it gives us tools and exercises with with to overcome these blocks and prevent us from becoming our own worst enemies.
If you have never read this wonderful book, you definitely should. Its well worth the time and effort to re-discover your creative self!!