+27 83 415 2403 inspire@vanessalee.co.za

Creativity works in mystical and often perplexing ways. Whilst “creatives” have been made to believe they view the world differently from their left-brained counterparts, the truth is we all have the ability to see the colours of the rainbow. We might just see different versions of them.

Whilst sipping on a glass on spicy Merlot in one of Cape Town’s trendiest yummy mummy spots, I was intrigued and humbled by the sense of creativity displayed. An elderly man creeping on all fours, taking photos of the gravel pathway, a young boy practicing his karate skills on his unsuspecting victim, the ever-welcoming oak tree, and the mommies pushing their prams adorned in the most unusual combinations of high-end couture. It dawned on me that creativity is in the eye of the beholder; there is no right or wrong, as long as we are honest with ourselves.

Being part of the “creative industry”, I am often subjected to adverse opinions, negativity and down right rudeness. That is just a matter of fact. However, I have realized that to become the most creative and inspired version of myself it is important to see the world through my own eyes, after all, who else will see my world better than, well, me. I don’t want to become an industry norm; I don’t want to paint the town red, I would prefer my town to be in shades of teal and turquoise. Of course in a working environment, you have to take clients, briefs and colleagues into account, but that does not mean you should lose yourself in the process, it just means you need to work with them in mind.

So although we are all energized through our own personal stimuli, I have come across a few pointers that can help least inspired become invigorated.

  1. Daydream – let your mind wander to the darkest and lightest places it wishes to go. When you let your mind break free from the proverbial chains that surround it, it has the ability to allow your inspiration to go wild.
  2. Look around you – take it all in. The colour of the carpets, the sounds, the smells. People watch. Ask questions – be curious, examine. Stand for one minute and just observe.
  3. Enjoy your own company – take time to meditate, sit quietly, and get in touch with the inner workings of you.
  4. Look for a silver-lining – learn to turn the negative into positive. Art, music, novels etc are often formed from the most heart-breaking stories.
  5. Live – go out there and experience life to the fullest. Seek pleasures and experiences, explore. Take risks.
  6. Fail elegantly – fail and fail again. Its how you grow. “Creatives fail and the really good ones fail often,” Forbes contributor Steven Kotler wrote in a piece in Einstein’s creative genius.
  7. Follow your passion – forget about external reward and recognition, be motivated by your desires and beliefs.
  8. Restrict yourself – some of the greatest ideas were a result of the creator placing limitations on themselves… think minimal words, fewer colors and less ingredients.
  9. Exercise – Albert Einstein said of the theory of relativity, “I thought of it while riding my bicycle.” Exercise clears the cobwebs of your mind and allows you the pleasure of those aha moments.

Go on, get out there and find your inspiration. Karate kick a tree, drape yourself in dots and stripes, free your mind from criticism and find that which makes you a little more cheerful, a little more colorful and a little more eager to start your day.