I love rituals, I think they are a perfect way to get consistency into our lives. But they are not everything. There is more to life.
A creative ritual can actually help you to create stuff
I have a very detailed process for creating a blog-post from conception to scheduling. It took a while to develop a process that works for me. But now, it never fails me. It has become very easy for me to write a post. I never expected that. But I learned, that I can trust the process, that I can sit down and something will come.
My writing process
- Prep: I write down a short note in my writing software Ulysses whenever something noteworthy comes up.
- Then when it is time to write:
- I find a place where I can sit for 40 Minutes.
- I drink a glass of water.
- I turn on my focus music.
- I open Ulysses and choose one note.
- I write whatever comes to mind regarding the topic.
- Then I open One Note, draw the pictures & copy them to Ulysses.
- I upload the post from Ulysses to WordPress, make a few final tweaks and schedule it for publication.
Inspiration doesn’t show up unless we do
I am always intrigued how I always come up with some text at step six. And I am surprised how I always come up with visuals at step 7. Creativity has become a process that I can call for at demand. I learned to trust the process, this relaxed me and builds enormous confidence in my creativity.
Creativity is something that we cultivate. We don’t wait for inspiration. Instead we create the conditions where it can happen and sit down to work regularly. I find this true every time I sit down to write. I start with a seed of an idea. I always have no idea how it is going to show up, but then in the end something will develop from it. It is always unclear how, but it always works, I am trusting the process more and more. And it serves me well.
When inspiration comes unexpectedly
But every once in a while inspiration strikes at a really impossible time. A long time I was confused what I should do in that moment. Should I continue with my ritual? Should I follow the inspiration?
My ground rule now is: Whenever that creative inspiration strikes, I go for it! There is so much emotional energy in that moment, don’t let it pass you. Rituals are there to help us, to give us a supportive structure. But when the bigger forces in life call, you go for them. You follow the inspiration. It can take you to completely new places and make new things available to you. They are like mountain moments where you can see further, farther. You don’t want to lose them. You just grab whatever tool you have available and get started. There is a reason we have a gut. Trust it.
What is your experience with inspiration? What work habits help you to do great work? What obstacles do you experience? Let me know in the comments below.