Questions in My Mind
When looking at a piece of art or creative work – a painting, drawing, poem, song, doodle, pile of rough stones formed into a human figure, the hieroglyphs, heat/cold powered device, or unicycle…
- Do you wonder what went into the mind of the creators?
- What were they thinking?
- Aren’t you curious how they view creativity if they even had the time to think about that (and oftentimes, they don’t or won’t care)?
- What influenced them?
- What stirred their creative juices or triggerred their imagination?
- When in a rut, what switched them back to creative mode?
- What activities refreshed or reinvigorated them?
- How did they free and manifest their creative spark?
- What valuable lessons or tips can they teach you?
I wonder about these questions not only because my site, Artsy Challenge, is about creativity but because creativity is a core part of everyone’s being.
As a product creator, I am curious to get answers to these questions especially from women like me who use their creativity to power up their entrepreneurial drives and undertakings whether as artists, writers, coaches, designers, or photographers, low content creators, or what not.
The urge was there but the idea didn’t gel until Kelly McCausey’s 2020 Stretch Yourself Challenge came in.
Part of the 21 challenges presented as a path to take is doing a collaborative blog post.
The Collaborative Blog Post
To start the ball rolling, I emailed 30 women inviting them to do a collaborative blog post on creativity. I didn’t know most of them on a personal level, only by name. A couple were strangers.
I also sent out invites to my subscribers, a regular Zoom group, and Kelly McCausey’s Mastermind Hub.
In the end, 17 women handed me in their submission, which was a feat.
This blog post presents their thoughts and tips on creativity.
Why brilliant women entrepreneurs? Because they manage to shine using creativity as their capital.
I bet these women don’t share their thoughts on the topic as much unless asked so we have a goldmine in our hands.
Let’s jump in!
Meet the 18 Brilliant Women Entrepreneurs
- Teresa Miller: Stop Saying You Aren’t Creative
- Hanny Agustine: Have a Vision
- Ana Tarouca: Get Rid of Perfectionism and Self-doubt
- Becky Beach: Just Dive in and Get to Work
- Jenn Brockman: Make It and Move On
- Melissa Brown, MD: Relax and Empty Your Mind of Worries and Anxieties
- Samantha Angel: Look All Around You for Inspiration
- Robin O’Neal Smith: Find Hidden Patterns
- Louise S. Goulet-Willis: Engage with Your Inner Self
- Angela Wills: Allow Yourself the Gift to Believe You Are a Creator
- Jennifer Burke: Imagine Things from a New Point of View
- Creative G: Remove distractions
- Gabby Conde: Get Inspired by Other People’s Creations
- Candace Chira: A Flop Is Never a Failure
- Angela Hobbs: Persevere and Be You
- Catherine Beebe: Stretch Yourself
- Stephanie Gilbert: Meditate to hydrate yourself with positive energy
- Maria Silvo: Act on Your Creative Impulse
Teresa Miller: Stop Saying You Aren’t Creative
Creativity has always been at the heart of everything I do, so much so that I made it the cornerstone of my business. I figured out early on in my entrepreneurial career that I simply had to do things my own way, and to help others do the same.
While it is certainly important to learn basic steps of HOW to do a thing, the way we apply the things we learn is where our creativity can really shine.
Creative expression has also been behind every new incarnation of my business. My muse demands that I switch things up every now and then, just to keep them interesting!
My Creativity Tips
- Stop saying you aren’t creative. Probably the very first – and most important – thing I would suggest is that you stop saying you aren’t creative. We are all born with a sense of wonder and creativity and it’s only through growing up that we start to lose touch with that side of ourselves. You won’t be able to find it again if you refuse to admit it’s there. Tell yourself every day: “I am creative.” and “I have great ideas!”
- Try something new. It doesn’t have to be huge, just something you haven’t done before. Bonus points if you make it something that’s inherently creative. Want to try a new recipe? Tweak it before you try it. Look over the recipe and decide what you think would for a better dish, even before you test it out. Or experiment with a new type of art, or even just put an outfit together in a new way.
- Learn to look for your own solutions. When you have a new problem or project that needs ideas or answers, look to yourself first instead of asking others. Brainstorm ideas with just yourself, even if they seem like crazy ones. They could lead to something amazing. I would go so far as to say that you should make it a regular practice to brainstorm and then brain DUMP. Save all those ideas for future use because you never know when they’ll come in handy. Which brings me to…
- Start keeping an idea journal! Creativity becomes like breathing when you learn to practice it regularly. You’ll find yourself having ideas constantly and you’ll want to capture them when they show up.
As you might have imagined, my entire list of tips is about owning and practicing your own creativity. When you begin to think of yourself as a creative person and learn to trust that fact, a whole new world will open up to you.
Teresa Miller is a writing, publishing, and creativity coach, fiercely committed to helping creative entrepreneurs learn to celebrate their differentness and own their awesome.
Visit her at Freestyle Author, her website which is about artistic expression combined with skill and expertise and having FUN with one’s business.
Hanny Agustine: Have a Vision
Creativity is a magic word since I was young. In my childhood, I liked to think differently in comparison to my friends. Even at that time, I didn’t know that it was creativity.
I believe Creativity can be learned and can be practiced.
In my business, creativity can come from everywhere. As a woman who was born and raised in tropical island Indonesia like me, colors are inspiring. You can see it from my gallery, I like to draw in bright colors.
Traveling is also an important source of my drawing out creativity. Traveling abroad opens my eyes to a lot of things. The feeling and silent moment when I was in Copenhagen looking at a colorful house near Nyhavn river or Central Park New York made me doodling abstract and drawing florals. Walking in London city can give me the energy to try linocut or just dipped my thread into red acrylic like the bus in London and create different art.
Remembering my mother who was in born in Middle Java, the center of Batik in Indonesia was also an inspiration of “Fiona.”
My Creativity Tips
- Meditate. You can define meditation in many ways, but for me walking in the morning and finds dry leaves is a meditation. Doing yoga and after that be silent in 30 minutes can spark my mind on some future drawing.
- Look at other artist’s work. This is the best way to learn and inspire our creativity.
- Have a vision. For me, creativity is nothing without a vision. What I mean with vision is, what will you be after self-learning those art things? When I found myself drawing to relieve my stress during taking care of my late husband, I finally found a vision after questioning my life: “Why did God give me this situation? Why is an engineer suddenly draws a flower? What does God want me to do ?” By asking these, I know that I can share my happiness with other people. We can have a vision that guides us in the future and give you that “fire” every morning when you wake up.
- Find your muse. When I saw Cat Coq photo sitting on a hill in Flores, a beautiful island in East Indonesia. Then I know that I want to be like her. Travelling + drawing + passive income! I follow her social media, knows when she stays in Thailand or in Bali for a couple of months. I learn what she learns by watching YouTube or research on google. Do whatever she does.
- Be persistent. After almost 3 years of doing something, you need the persistence to make your dream come true. Keep doing and doing it, 10.000 hours later, you become a master of it. That’s why I spend 10-30 minutes every day to draw on my iPad or canvas or paper.
- Practice daily. Daily practice means a lot. No matter what you draw, the habit that you create after 90 days will give you a surprise.
Hanny Agustine lives in Jakarta, Indonesia, and runs a business with 15 people under her. She is an electrical engineer by profession and worked in Information Technology for about 20 years. None of her previous background was connected with art or drawing. As a self-taught artist, she watched hundreds of artists’ works, learned how to create patterns and use Photoshop, find a sewer and fabric printing company, and how to sell and license her drawings, market at Instagram, and much more. Her vision is “helping people around the world to be Creative Entrepreneurs like her.”
Vist Hanny at HannyHoney, an online learning community with classes for creative and curious people, on topics including illustration, drawing, design, graphic design, pattern and more. Also find her at Skillshare and learn art from her or follow her at Instagram at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ana Tarouca: Get Rid of Perfectionism and Self-doubt
My Creative Process begins with research. Usually, I have a general idea of what I want to do: a planner, a journal, cards, posters…
It’s still vague so I go in search of ideas. I’m very visual, so I go find inspiration in illustrations and cliparts which I would like to work with. I search on Etsy, Pinterest, Creative Fabrica, Canva Templates…
If I have an idea of how I want to work and display the graphics, the content selection and organization comes easily. Some people might say that I start with what other people usually do last.
Lots of times I struggle with procrastination and perfectionism. I write “Done is better than perfect” on my planner regularly, to motivate me.
Sometimes, when I’m stuck, I put the idea on the back of my mind and let it stay there for a while, standing by, while I do other things. And often, suddenly, inspiration comes, and the way to proceed becomes clear in my head.
A time of deep work follows after I know the direction I want to go.
As a shop owner who sells printables, I love the creative process most of all. Marketing and the technicalities of business are a necessary endeavor in the business. If one day I find I can delegate, I’ll happily do so and dedicate myself only to the creative work.
My Creativity Tips
- Be original. Don’t try to do exactly what others are doing only because they are being successful. Originality makes you stand out and grabs your potential costumers’ attention. I’m not saying that you shouldn’t do market research and identify what is selling. Grab what you find and give it your own twist.
- Get rid of perfectionism and self-doubt. They only cripple your productivity efforts
- Be consistent. Work every day.
- Write your to-do list every night, after you finish your work. It’s easier to list what is yet to be done while your head is still on it, that the day after when you start anew.
- Be honest and simple in what you create. Be generous. Be helpful. Don’t be pretentious.
- Listen to constructive advice and be open to changes to improve your work.
Ana Tarouca, a Portuguese product creator, takes on multiple roles as wife, mother of three, dog lover, avid reader, and librarian. Her favorite hobbies are reading and designing. She loves graphic design and started by creating her own books and journals.
Visit her at My Fair Ladies Printables, her website that aims to help online entrepreneurs save time and hassle by providing already made digital products that customers can adapt to their own needs and personality and/or share with their clients.
Becky Beach: Just Dive in and Get to Work
I enjoy designing planners to help others organize their lives. I have worked as a UX designer for Fortune 500 companies so know how to create a product that is usable. I take that experience with me when I am creating a new planner to help a customer.
My Creativity Tip
Don’t start with a plan, just dive in and get to work. When you plan something out, you don’t get the opportunity to express your creativity. If you plan too much, you might realize the project might be too hard or take too long. Just go ahead and get started. You can plan as you go!
Becky Beach is an award-winning designer who has designed for various Fortune 500 companies. She is the owner of PLR Beach, a commercial use template shop that bloggers and business owners can buy low-cost professional templates that they can customize and resell as their own. She lives in the Dallas, Texas area with her 4-year-old son and husband.
Jenn Brockman: Make It and Move On
Creativity isn’t always arts and crafts. It’s also using tools in different ways than originally intended – or making something your own when you use it in a way that benefits you but might be different than how others benefit from it.
My Creativity Tips
- Don’t second guess yourself.
- Make it and move on. If it’s aligned with you, it will stick. If it’s not, you’ll forget about it soon enough.
- Experiment! The worst that can happen is it sucks. In that case see #2 above.
Jenn Brockman is Head Creative at Planning Addicts, a successful planner design company offering done-for-you resources for coaches, print-on-demand creators, and small business owners, for commercial use.
Melissa Brown, MD: Relax and Empty Your Mind of Worries and Anxieties
One of the ways I use my creativity is through writing PLR articles for health and wellness professionals over at CoachReadyContent.com. I’m a retired physician and I never recognized my creative side before I came online. It takes constant creativity to come up with article topics, ideas for customers to use my products in their business, and innovative ways to teach them how they can use the products to reach their customers and grow their business.
Branding is another way creativity comes into play in my business. Deciding on branding colors, logos, slogans and taglines, and naming products and coaching programs is such a creative endeavor. I am currently creating a separate personal branding website at ShesGotContent.com for my new podcast, coaching and self-study courses to separate it from my PLR store, CoachReadyContent.com. I’m finding it a fun creative expression of me as a coach and mentor and can’t wait to launch the new site.
As strange as it may seem, my creativity seems to flow while I’m in the shower! There’s something about relaxing in a warm shower of water, emptying my mind of worries and anxieties, that allows me to tap into amazing creative channels.
As soon as I step out of the shower, I write down any ideas that came to me so they don’t get lost. Keep a notebook and pen right in the bathroom or use waterproof paper and pens to capture those ideas while you’re still in the shower.
Over the summer of 2020, I read and studied the book, The Artist’s Way, by Julia Cameron. I would highly recommend it. Doing the ‘Morning Pages’ and ‘Artist Dates’ has helped me amp up my creative juices so I’m now overflowing with new and innovative ideas.
Coach Ready Content is your home for unique health and wellness done-for-you content written by a medical doctor. ShesGotContent.com (launching October 2020) focuses on helping women solopreneurs become more consistent with their message and content marketing to impact more people and create the change they want to see in the world. Services provided here include coaching, membership, and educational courses. She’s Got Content is also the home for the soon-to-launch podcast by the same name! Coming in November 2020.
Samantha Angel: Look All Around You for Inspiration
When I first started trying to make an online business work, I had no idea of how to do it. So, I tried many different things, but nothing made my heart sing until I found my creativity in designing graphics. Mostly for myself, at first. As I honed my skills, I realized this was something I loved to do and wanted to share my skills. And voilà my business was born.
As I began creating graphics for clients, I mostly designed images for blog posts and social media but jumped at the chance to delve further into graphic design for pretty much anything my clients ask me to do. This helped me learn new techniques and develop confidence in my work. Now, I design logos, book covers, graphic quotes and event graphics as well.
In 2015, I partnered with my long-time mentor, Kelly McCausey, on starting a new PLR business, White Label Perks. We expanded our partnership to include our talented writer, Avery Wilmer, and acquired Daily Faith PLR in 2019. I create all the graphics for both businesses.
Recently I started a passion project at Happy Fun Sassy designing motivational mugs and intend to offer more types of products in the near future.
I love to create pretty, feminine graphics with sparkly touches. Since my client base is women, it’s a perfect way to serve my people while loving what I do.
Keeping an ideas journal can spark new projects. Also, keeping a digital folder or a physical box of images can give you creative ideas for your own designs.
I find myself drawn to magazine layouts, postcards, journal and planner designs, social graphics, t-shirt designs, ads, and billboards. I analyze these designs and get inspiration from them.
Understand that different styles appeal to different people. Find your own style, and you’ll attract an audience that loves it.
My Creativity Tips
My biggest tips for gaining creativity and inspiration for your business are:
• Explore different types of creative works until you find what you love to do;
• Look all around you for inspiration;
• Keep an ideas journal;
• Above all, believe in yourself and your budding talent.
Samantha Angel is a self-taught graphic designer who loves creating beautiful, feminine graphics. When not busy designing, she’s doodling, gaming or camping with her beautiful family. She enjoys designing motivational mugs and products over at Happy Fun Sassy, which offers fun, inspiring mug designs and motivational messages for entrepreneurs. Browse her full collection at Happy Fun Sassy.
Robin O’Neal Smith: Find Hidden Patterns
Creativity, to me, is turning new and imaginative ideas into reality. Creative people can find hidden patterns, make connections between unrelated things, perceive the world in various ways, and come up with solutions to problems.
Creativity doesn’t just mean being artsy or crafty. It can mean looking at an object and seeing the angle for the perfect photograph, or looking at a piece of fabric and imagining how it will look made into something else. It can mean looking at a client’s web page that is drab and dreary and being able to see how it could be impressive and eye-catching. Or looking at dull, boring copy and knowing how to format it to make it inviting and engaging for the reader.
I use creativity in many ways. When writing, it is coming up with descriptive words to describe the places I have visited. I try to paint a picture with my words so the reader will see it in their head as they read.
When taking pictures, I try to look at the angle that might not be the one everyone else would take the photo. I use creativity in creating graphics and web designs. In creating ebook covers and formatting. Creativity is just a part of my everyday life.
My Creativity Tips
Because creativity is so essential to just about everything I do when I get stuck and lack creativity, I need to do something about it. There are several things that work for me.
- Do something different and move a bit. Maybe take a break and work on another project for a bit.
- Do something fun. Go for a walk, ride bikes, dance, kayak, or swim.
- Enjoy nature. Being outdoors and especially near water relaxes me and gets the creative juices flowing.
- Clean my house. Strange as it sounds, I hate to clean, but when I do, I always get a lot of creative ideas.
- Plan little day trips or getaways. A different environment, a different focus for a day or two is a huge help.
- Sleep. If I haven’t had enough sleep for several days in a row, I lose some creativity, and when I know that is the cause, the only thing that will help is a good night’s rest.
I think it all comes down to switching gears in your brain. When you change your focus to something different, you get the creative juices flowing.
Robin O’Neal Smith is a content creator, freelance writer, and virtual expert who has learned how to get noticed by the search engines. With eleven articles on the first page of Google, she has mastered the art of SEO. She provides quality written and video content for clients, as well as editing, formatting and ebook publishing. You may get in touch with her at Expert Content Creation.
Louise S. Goulet-Willis: Engage with Your Inner Self
Creativity, for me, is engaging with my inner self. Observing the world around me, particularly in nature, and incorporating it into my world view. What new objects do I see? How are they incorporated into the whole vista around me? Why is it the way it is? What problems do I see? Are there ways I can solve those problems?
All these questions lead me to dig deep into my being or soul, if you will. Then I take what I see and imagine it in different ways. I invite curiosity to linger until an idea pops into my head. This idea is often vague, but leaves me with a feeling of urgency, almost. A desire to capture the idea, with the feeling, and create it in a tangible form in whatever way I can.
As I mainly like to write, I try to form word clouds or mind maps of ideas interspersed with feelings, problems, solutions. If I’m stuck, however, I sometimes turn to other creative forms. I always ask ‘why?’ when I think I have sought out a decently formulated problem and a possible solution to enable myself to dig deeper. A good problem-finder changes his/her surroundings to invite more outside-the-box thinking. I do this over and over until I feel I have come across an original idea that has value and is relevant, not only for others, but for me also.
Using this process, helps me to unleash my creative side in my work – whether it be writing, composing, playing my instruments, etc. Since creativity is essential in business to help us stand out and apart from the mundane, this process is essential to creating new “masterpieces” (LOL) in my work.
My Creativity Tips
This is my list of tips I use when I feel like my creativity well is pretty much dry and I don’t anticipate the rains pouring down anytime soon:
- Try to change your surroundings. For me, that means hiking a mountain, taking long walks, sitting on a park bench watching people go by, sitting in a quiet church, visiting an elementary school and a dozen more. Physical activity gets the serotonin levels rising and along with those good feelings come good ideas and inspiration.
- Participate in other creative activities. Throw some paint on a canvas, try some illustrating, take a new class online or otherwise, play a musical instrument or listen to music, play with your pets or someone else’s pets, play a meditation tape, dance/move, create a poster or wall hanging, design some elements to create a journal/planner, try your hand at creative writing outside of a genre you usually work in, read a good book. Or a million other things, the point being to disengage the “now” that your brain is stuck in and drop it into a new well.
- Practice imagining. Lie on your back in the grass and watch the clouds overhead. What shapes do you see? Turn back into the 6 -year-old you once were. What you can imagine, you can bring to your conscious mind. That’s your job as a creative individual. Experiment. Find what works best for you.
- Let go of the fear. The fear that you’re not good enough, that you haven’t got a creative bone in your body, that no one will be interested in your creative venture. No one’s watching. Let it all out! Be young, be childish, be free. Once the fear is overcome, if only for a short while, your creativity will soar and the inspiration you seek will pour into your being. Now take that creative inspiration and bring it to life!
Louise S. Goulet-Willis is a published writer of children’s books and middle-grade novels, workbooks, and puzzle books. She was born and raised in New England and now lives in Eagle River, Alaska, with her family and an assortment of animals. Her hobbies include reading, drawing, and playing musical instruments. She loves to write for children and middle grade readers, believing that if only one child reads one of her books and enjoys it, she has achieved a great accomplishment. She has multiple degrees including an A.S., B.S. and an M.Ed. You’ll find her published works at the following links: Amazon Author Page, Facebook Author Page, and website at LSGoulet.
Angela Wills: Allow Yourself the Gift to Believe You Are a Creator
Personally I think everything we do is a creative expression. I believe in independent thinking and creating your own world how you want it. This serves me well in business as I never need anyone’s advice or permission to move forward. I just go and CREATE as I please 🙂
I see creativity as an expression of how you feel and what you like and that as we unleash our creativity we’ll attract others who feel and like the same things we do.
My Creativity Tips
- Allow yourself the gift to believe you ARE a creator. Too many people think they can’t make stuff or be creative and that isn’t true. We are born creative. Get practicing and it will come back to you.
- Look for creative things that inspire YOU. Have fun with it – crafts, painting, drawing, etc. These are not separate from your business. It’s ALL connected.
Angela Wills loves to do her part to make the world a better, happier, healthier place. She’s on a mission to make an impact and believes that that ALWAYS requires creativity! Read more about her in her website, Angela Wills.
Jennifer Burke: Imagine Things from a New Point of View
I’m a lifelong amateur photographer, since the days of my first instamatic with the flash cubes to the modern DSLR and gear I have now. I know how important quality photographs are for my website, social media, and other marketing. When possible over the years, I like to take and use my own photos. I wish I had more time to take myself on photo ‘retreats’ but I plan to get back to those! When I need to use stock images I am picky and look for quality, artistry, diversity, and non-boring images. I feel those are crucial for sharing my point and reaching the right audiences.
My Creativity Tips
Get creative with your own photos. Use the camera most of us have literally in-hand, your smartphones! Go ahead, play with filters if your shot is less than perfect. Take one of the many photo challenges you can find on Pinterest – like ‘picture of something red’ or ‘get a close-up of nature’. Creativity can come from changing our literal perspective – so go outside, look up, look down, take pictures from wild angles, imagine things from a new point of view. You’ll be surprised by what you see and create.
Jennifer Burke is a a proud marketing geek who is there for busy solopreneurs who stumble on marketing technology. She loves love exploring tools while coaching clients to confidently promote their business. She is also a geek about all things sports, wine, photos, and grilling! Through her Mighty Marketing Mojo site, she demystifies the how-to and tech of marketing so small businesses and solopreneurs can promote themselves more confidently and attract the clients they love.
Creative G: Remove distractions
I’m a practicing medical doctor who struggled with burnout multiple times in my medical career. Despite these struggles, I’ve learned to find many creative outlets that have helped me keep my sanity despite a crazy work schedule.
Through many courses and experiences, I’ve developed my talents in various artistic pursuits, including art, crafts, cooking, baking, and sewing. My goal is to share what I know and how to do it, but how others can apply it to their lives to have balance.
I feel that being creative every day taps an inner need for all human beings to express themselves. We sometimes get caught up in mundane tasks in our work and home life, which can lead to us feeling out of sorts, overwhelmed, and under-nourished.
When you develop a practice, whether it’s decorating cookies, learning calligraphy, or creating a quilt, you build confidence. You also build flow, that intangible feeling of being so focused on the creative process that improves your general well-being and, yes, even your happiness. In essence, it’s therapeutic and a healthy practice that many practitioners fail to acknowledge.
My goal is to help others get their creative mojo and use it to create better work-life balance and prevent burnout. I think 2020 is a time that others need that, too.
As professionals and creatives, we get pulled in many directions. It is hard to prioritize what is best for our business and our life. We start, but we don’t complete many projects.
We call these unfinished tasks works in progress, and I’m a strong proponent that completing even a few of these will free up your energy and creative mojo!
My Creativity Tips
So, how do you do this? Here are steps that may help.
- Get out of your head. Yes, the first thing is to stop worrying about the final result. So, set yourself up for success by not looking for perfection.
- Remove distractions. Clear out a workspace and get the tools you need to start. Right now, that’s paper and a pen or pencil. That’s it! You already know what is taking space in your head because you think about it all the time, so nothing else needed.
- Take inventory. Write down all the tasks you think you need to get done in your business. These include unfinished projects, calls you need to make, and research. Write it all down.
- Prioritize. Prioritize by the number of actions to complete each task, from least to most. Do NOT prioritize what you think you need to finish first. Put a number next to each item on your list, in order of the least number of steps to the most steps. One number per item!
- Now, tackle the first item on your list and complete it. It may be as simple as a phone call!
After you finish that first task, reward yourself!
Remember, these projects can be fun! It’s less effort to start in the middle than creating something new! I will guarantee you will get more accomplished than you ever thought possible, and your creativity will soar!
Creative G is a doctor and wife to a loving husband. She has a 9-year old daughter who loves to create, too. She has developed many skills, but also loves baking, crafting, and writing as well as mentoring, teaching and helping others. She claims to be a “Jane of all trades, and master of fun!.” She runs Creatively Balancing Medicine where she helps others find their creative spark, try new things, and dive deeper into their creativity. To her, creativity is not about performance but embracing imperfection in the process of creating and taking pride in self-expression and willingness to learn.
Gabby Conde: Get Inspired by Other People’s Creations
Creativity is in everything I do in our businesses online. I would venture to say that even if you’re an accountant, you use creativity. Creativity is at the core of creating products, writing page copy or blog posts, and art.
I use watercolors and other graphics in my business. Coming up with ideas takes creativity. And tapping into it is easy. Once you get tapped in, you can generate too many ideas, but it’ll keep you busy for months.
I tap into my creativity by looking at other people’s products, art, blog posts, and anything else I want to create. I keep a swipe file of ideas.
My Creativity Tips
- Get inspired by other people’s creations. Try going to different sites like Pinterest, YouTube, Google, and Etsy.
- Don’t limit yourself to those sites or even online. Some of the best ideas come from noticing what other people or I need. If there is no product or service to fill a need or if the existing product/service is inferior, consider creating a product or service to fill it.
- Imagine what they created differently. For instance, if I’m creating a horse, I’ll look at regular art or watercolor horses. Then I’ll look at whimsical styles of them too. I’ll imagine how the horse would look if I gave it purple or teal hair, a different pose, and what it is doing.
- Keep a swipe file of ideas. Cut out pictures from magazines that speak to you in some way. Keep sales pages that you buy from or interest you. Get photos of art, books, and anything else and keep a file of these for when you need to be inspired.
Gabby Conde has worked as a healer and psychic on a professional capacity since 2008 and has taken courses, gotten certifications, and finishing her Master’s of Science in Clinical Counseling next year. She has industry experience and years of working with clients and loves what she does to help people. She discovered that her clients and other business owners often struggle with creating content. Having also worked in digital marketing and content creation since 2006, she decided to use her resources to help. She loves working with spiritual entrepreneurs to get their message and services into the world. She runs A Cup of Zen, which works with small to medium-sized business owners grow their business with content support, leads and sales. Content support includes blog posts, planners, journals, workbooks, and courses.
Candace Chira: A Flop Is Never a Failure
My business runs on creativity – my creativity. Sure, I love to make money just like the next guy but what motivates me is the passion I have for creating. “Going to work” is always fun and exciting because I get to create the things I dream up in my mind. That’s never boring to me.
Products might flop but a flop is never a failure. Here’s why – you can always profit from that product in multiple ways. Include it in a bundle, use it as a bonus, tweak your sales page and present it again in 6 months, sell it at a low price on Black Friday, etc. The ideas are endless. You put a lot of work into that product. Don’t let it collect dust on your hard drive. It’s valuable.
Candace Chira wears many hats – a mother, grandmother and wife. Professionally, she is first and foremost an entrepreneur, artist, and writer. She runs The PLR Printables Boutique that provides commercial use products for low content publishers.
Angela Hobbs: Persevere and Be You
Creativity is a personal and individual thing. No one has the same view or feeling about the same things. This makes you unique, as we all are.
My creativity stems from art and music. Everything I touch or encounter gives me inspiration and a burst of emotional color. My artistic expression has the feeling and emotion of whatever happens to inspire me at the time, whether it be positive or negative. It also gives my art and creations a vast array of artistic genres, from the beautiful to the macabre. Currently, I use my artistic endeavors to create unique planners, journals, and other graphic art, as well as what I like to call, “Art on Fashion” in many print-on-demand (POD) type of platforms.
My Creativity Tips
- To start your day, get your self a cuppa, and find a quiet place to convene with nature. There is nothing more inspiring than birds, flowers and the sky! Not only will it set your day for creativity, you will be surprised how much pops into your head as far as ideas & inspiration. Be sure to have your notebook handy!
- Burn out come fast, spend 45 to 50 minutes working on a project, then 10 to 15 checking out those birds. Do some stretching and deep breathing, and you will soon be revitalized.
- Watch comedy or something light before retiring for the night. It will help you wake up in a better mood and ready to be inspired!
- Most importantly, read, research, network, and ask questions. Persevere and be you!
Beginning as an entertainer, Angela Hobbs have done everything from production and promotion, to booking and management. While living in Los Angeles for many years, she worked within the field of music, film and television. She’s been earning online and working in ebusiness since 1995. Visit Angela’s shop at Color My Agenda to know more about her planners, journals, calendars, and coloring books in printable PDF format.
Catherine Beebe: Stretch Yourself
I have played and written music for 30+ years off and on. What I have learned is that when you have random inspiration strike, make notes right away. Collect your ideas and then filter out the best ones later. I have had ideas that I have not recorded that are lost forever because I thought I would remember. This year I have also been noodling about in Procreate as well as creating fonts. Some of it I end up using in my business, but mostly I do it to relax and practice.
My Creativity Tips
- Write down all ideas and filter later, don’t censor yourself. The same with just doodling if you are a visual artist, try things without self-judgement. Keep a journal or notebook of ideas so it is all in one place.
- Stretch yourself. Try a different type of art or expression than you usually do. I never would have thought I would have been so engaged with the font making app
- Look for and collect inspiration around you–the textures of a tree trunk, color palettes in a photo
- Take breaks from your business. It can be hard to turn your brain off from your business, but taking a mental break will restore not just your focus but when you let go you may find that your are opened up to new ideas.
- Set aside a time to do or learn something creative that is non-business. I do this evenings and Sundays. Skillshare is awesome for learning new creative things!
Catherine Beebe helps overwhelmed entrepreneurs get more done in their businesses with customizable content. She does this through her business, Content Accelerators , that creates templates and training for printables and low content books with using Affinity and Adobe software.
Stephanie Gilbert: Meditate to Hydrate Yourself with Positive Energy
When my son was born, I felt the urge to unleash my creative side. Not that he never gave up on me, but this forced downtime coupled with this new adventure gave me the opportunity to rethink my priorities.
There was no longer any question of me going back to work outside! I was finally able to give free rein to my daily creativity so that our son could develop fully. New baby recipes, funny photoshoots, crazy stories and whatnot are all fun activities that have evolved over time to allow me to do more and more of what I love: creating little joys every day!
And in my spare time I would have fun creating all kinds of fun printables for my partner who is an elementary school teacher. And I was like, “Why limit myself to Hubby’s class? I’m sure my designs would appeal to other teachers and homeschool moms as well! ”
My creativity – I cannot live without it – I draw it from the small pleasures of everyday life. It allows me to find original solutions, inspires me to take up new challenges and, above all, prevents me from staying in my comfort zone for too long!
My Creativity Tips
Whenever I find myself stuck in a creative block or rut, here are what works best for me to break through:
- Do something mindless: embracing mindless chores gives my brain the freedom to think creatively. It is also what I call combining the useful with the pleasant! Some of my favorite activities to allow the creative part of my mind the freedom to ponder on its own include cleaning, washing dishes and folding laundry. Even taking a shower has helped me many times to get unstuck!
- Get outside: Rediscovering every day all the beauty Mother Nature has for us is sure to awake my creative self! The arrangement of colors, birdsong, the shape of the clouds, … are as many sources of inspiration as of appeasement to find my creative balance.
- Spend time with my son: Just being with him allows me to relax and entangle my thoughts with his vivid imagination. I love brainstorming with him because he always comes up with a zillion funny solutions yet plausible for him. And yes, that’s often how I find the solution I’m seeking!
- Watch a movie or read a book: My favorite genres are adventure movies and fantasy stories. I have fun, I let go and at the turn of a twist, I find the missing piece!
- Meditate: It always gives me a shower for the brain: it cleanses me deeply and it hydrates me with positive energy!
The next time that you struggle with creativity, remember to try one of these tips!
There is a good chance that before you even finish, you will get a lightbulb moment to help you get over your creative struggles.
After her son was born, Stephanie Gilbert felt that the best place to be was at home with him! She gradually realized that she can do everything she enjoys (learning, creating, and sharing) through working online and creating fun digital content. That’s how she created her website, Stephie the Happy Mom, to do what she loves and sprinkle happiness in other mama’s lives! Visit her site to find delicious recipes, self-help tips and wisdom in addition to her fun printables creations.
Maria Silvo: Act on Your Creative Impulse
Here’s a confession. Even at this point when I have created many “artistic” products, I still think of myself as un-creative or lacking in creativity. It’s a deeply-rooted mindset that stems from childhood when my peers were creating gorgeous art work and I thought I wasn’t. It’s a common thing among kids that grows in them through adulthood.
Guess what? I discovered an effective cure for my limiting belief. Action! I got tired of being held up by negative perceptions of my creative ability. I tried my hand at creating designs, and the more I did, what I thought of myself no longer mattered.
“Begin to free yourself at once by doing all that is possible with the means you have, and as you proceed in this spirit, the way will open for you to do more.” ~Robert Collier
What is creativity? For me, it is using everything at my disposal – tangible or intangible, visible or invisible, physical or spiritual, good or bad, beautiful or ugly – to create something awesome or find solutions to everyday problems. If I don’t have what it takes, I go out there and get them.
My Creativity Tips
- Act on your creative impulse. Creative impulse is my inner child wanting to play. I respond to it and see where it takes me. Even when I’m beating a deadline, I squeeze in time to execute an idea even if I don’t finish it.
- Listen to your gut. I play and experiment by moving things around, making it big or small, adding elements, putting them in an off position, looking from different positions. Then I ask: Am I happy with my finished product? What’s lacking or missing? What can I add or subtract? What does my gut tell me? If things feel right, that’s it. I’m done.
- Sleep over an idea. When there’s something I’m working on, I think about it several times. Write down my thoughts. Ask many questions. I sleep with it. In the morning, I wake up with great insights.
- Just do it. Regardless of fear or shame, just create when you feel like it. Action is how you confront your inner critic and make things happen.
- Do what you love. Visiting thrift shops is a rewarding, delightful treat for me because I can’t predict what I stumble upon. Watching Korean series, which I adore in terms of plot, characterization, and storytelling, teach me a lot. Trying out Japanese, Korean, Thai, Indian, and Chinese cuisine brings me joy. Shopping for art supplies and books are heavenly. These activities feed my creativity.
Maria Silvo runs Artsy Challenge, a new website designed for those who find expressing their creativity or artistic inclination as a challenge. She sells brandable, low content assets such as coloring designs, journals, book covers, embellishments, graphics quotes, among others. See her creations in her Artsy Challenge Shop.
End of Journey: Summing Up Learning and Insights
After going through all post of these awesome women entrepreneurs, what valuable insights did you get?
Were there tips that gave you aha moments?
Anything new or surprising because of their simplicity?
Recurring ideas that deserves to be highlighted are:
- Creativity takes on many and varied forms of expression and it’s not always in the form of visual art.
- Just do it. Let it go, grow or evolve.
- Try something new or different.
- Look outside of yourself and learn from others or nature.
- Write down your creative ideas; otherwise, they can get lost or forgotten.
- See things from different angles, perspectives, or positions.
- Physical work or movement can help stimulate creativity.
- Take a break including getting enough sleep.
- Shut off your inner critic by getting out of your head, thinking that you’re not creative.
- Find things that inspire you.
- Believe in yourself.
What can you add to these tips?
What actions have you proven effective at propping up or boosting your creativity?
Can you share them here?
Please comment below to share with us your thoughts and offer your own creativity tips.