Draw Like a Kindergartner and Other Ways to Bring More Creativity into your Day
About 10 years ago, I got really serious about my creative practice. I started to explore painting and mixed media. I’ve always been a writer and adding the visual arts to my regular creative practice changed my life.
For the past decade I have been using visual and verbal arts as a means of self-discovery and a powerful tool for personal growth. I’ve learned so much about myself on this journey. A few years ago I asked myself what might be possible if I put art at the center of my life instead of my then role as a business consultant for artists and creatives.
While I didn’t change my career focus at that moment, I did put art at the center of my personal life and eventually it became the core of the current work I do supporting women to go from midlife crisis to a midlife renaissance.
Below are a few ways to get started with adding creative play to your day but one of my best tips is to make sure you have a beginner’s mind. Don’t expect to create a masterpiece. Instead draw like a kindergartner and focus on the sheer joy of putting words or color on paper or walls.
Starting a daily creative practice in midlife can help you to get in touch with yourself and learn how to play and explore the world with curiosity and wonder! I believe the old cliché “all work and no play makes Minette a very dull girl!”
Here are some fun ideas to help you bring more creativity into your day:
- Morning pages: Begin your day by writing three pages of stream-of-consciousness thoughts. It can be a way to clear your mind, spark creativity, and explore your thoughts and feelings. Treat it as a daily brain dump or a form of journaling. For more information about morning pages, check out Julia Cameron’s classic book The Artist’s Way.
- Collage creation: Collect magazines, newspapers, and images that inspire you. Use them to create collages that reflect your interests, goals, or dreams. It can be a visual representation of your aspirations and serve as a source of motivation and inspiration.
- Photography challenge: Take up a daily photography challenge. Grab your camera or use your smartphone to capture a photo every day. You can explore different themes, objects, or perspectives. It’s a creative way to notice the beauty in your surroundings and document your experiences.
- Doodle or sketch: Set aside a few minutes each day to doodle or sketch. You don’t have to be an expert artist; the purpose is to let your imagination flow and enjoy the process. It could be abstract designs, simple sketches, or anything that comes to mind. My personal favorite? Indulge in a brand new box of crayons and a coloring book and go crazy coloring.
- Creative writing prompts: Find a list of creative writing prompts or create your own. Set aside time each day to write a short story, poem, or a few paragraphs inspired by the prompt. It’s a way to explore your imagination and improve your writing skills. Check out this free list I created of my favorite Gratitude Journaling Prompts.
- Musical exploration: If you have an interest in music, consider dedicating time each day to play an instrument, learn a new song, or experiment with composing your own melodies. You can also explore music-making apps or software if you prefer digital tools.
- DIY crafts: Engage in do-it-yourself (DIY) crafts that interest you. It could be knitting, crocheting, woodworking, or any other craft that appeals to you. Start small with simple projects and gradually challenge yourself with more complex creations. My husband is currently build drums for our kids in his workshop, he loves woodworking!
- Cooking and recipe experimentation: Turn your daily meals into a creative practice. Try out new recipes, experiment with ingredients, and play with flavors. Cooking can be a form of self-expression, and you might discover new dishes that you love. This is a personal favorite of mine. I’ve always loved to cook and especially love cooking with lots of colorful vegetables to make a meal pretty.
The key is to start small and make it a habit, just like a kid with a box of crayons. Focus on the process, be consistent, and don’t get overly focused on the outcome or that inner critic voice just might stop you getting started. Embrace the joy of creating and allow your creativity to flourish.
Which of these are you already doing or might like to try?