Category Archives: creative career

Be Creatively Productive!

Be Creatively Productive!

As I’ve mentioned before, I’m a believer in the inherent creativity in each of us. Creativity is an essential part of human functioning; without it, we wouldn’t be able to find our way to work when we decide to take a “short cut” to avoid traffic. Or figure out what to buy at the grocery store when we’re wondering what to have for dinner. Or write a blog post, or sketch a picture, or learn a tune. While some people give more time, energy and practice to their creative endeavors, we are all creative.

We are all, also, imaginative. We can visualize a future for ourselves, daydream and play with ideas that might lead to something exciting.daydream

But, are we all productive? I know I struggle with feeling productive, whether it’s the kind of productivity I need to meet a deadline, or the kind of productivity that keeps me focused on writing my novel. How can we use our creativity and imagination to help us get and stay productive?

In a recent article, Imagination, Creativity and Productivity Lisa Canning puts forth the notion that by more fully activating our brains we can be more productive.

Playing a musical instrument, for example, is a great way to activate both hemispheres of the brain. Another activity that stimulates both hemispheres is juggling. Yet another, which I remember doing as a child, is to write the word for one color, while using a pen of a different color. For example, write the word “yellow” while using a “blue” pen. And Improvisation is a fun and challenging way to use your whole brain.

Canning concludes that  “the more of our brain we use- the closer to ‘whole brain thinking’ we achieve- the more we are able to synthesize information CREATIVELY into productive outcomes.The data reveals that both the right (creative) and the left (linear) need to be full activated to produce the greatest level of productivity.”

to-do-list

Whole brain thinking is what creativity is all about! There are lots of brain-training games and activities out there – give them a try to see if your productivity increases!

How do you choose what you love?

How do you choose what you love?

I recently read this essay titled “How To Do What You Love” by Paul Graham. In it, he outlines some of his processes for choosing to do what he loves. It’s a pretty realistic essay, as well. No bones about it: choosing to do what you love can be complicated and fraught.

So, how do you choose to do what you love? do what you love

  • First, you need to identify what that is. And don’t be mislead: it may not be one thing. It could look like a variety of pursuits, all of which combine to become the life you love.
  • Once you’ve found that thing or combination of things that bring you joy, start doing it! Whether you can only squeeze it in part-time or you decide to jump in with both feet, do it.
  • Finally, the doing of what you love can be both a pleasure and a pain. There will be ups and downs. You will wonder why you ever decided to do what you do. You may change what you do, modify or adapt it so that you love it even more. But like anything else, the pursuit of a life well-lived and well-loved is a practice. Practice daily if you can, weekly at least. Keep at it.

I’ve concluded for myself that there really isn’t anything else to do in my life than to do what I love. In other words, if I’m not doing what I love (or doing something I need to do so that I can do what I love), then what’s the point? My life is mine to be lived, not someone else’s. Whether doing what you love looks like raising a family or painting a canvas, or writing a novel or starting a cooking show, whatever you choose – I say: choose what you love. It’s rarely the “easier” road, but it is by far the more fulfilling.