Three simple and surprising daily practices that help you live creatively
The online world is filled with information that doesn't always seem useful and sometimes, unfortunately, some of it isn't. There is also information that you see over and over again and dismiss because it seems a bit woo-woo, simple or like a throwaway line that everyone uses. That can be the problem with over-saturation, you become de-sensitised.
I know with these three practices that I'm about to share with you, I started to dismiss the ability of two of them to help me with my creative life. Thankfully I didn't dismiss them altogether because when I started to use them earnestly they started to work (fancy that).
When I think about why I dismissed them it would be because they seemed so simple and something so simple couldn't possibly work. I soon discovered that these thoughts were really old limiting beliefs that were keeping me stuck in old ways. It reminded me of this saying by Confucius:
Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated.
Oh, the truth of these words. I know I've let things become unnecessarily complicated when an easier path lay before me because I was letting old ways stop me from finding a new and better way to be.
But the beauty of life is in the learning and there is no point lamenting old ways. It is the learning that makes life fun. We've simply forgotten that is one of the reasons why we are here. As is getting to know all sides of ourselves and what we are truly capable of.
Having daily practices helps us become more comfortable with the unknown and the growth we are all naturally meant to go through, especially when living a creative life.
These three simple practices have helped me and I hope will help you too. So if you've dismissed them before and feel open to giving them another try, please do.
How often do you see people waxing lyrical about gratitude? All the time, right. And for good reason. It works. I think the area that keeps people stuck around gratitude is the how. Do you do it in the morning? Do I have to write it down? Do I have to have 10 every day? Is there a certain way I have to say it? The simple answer is, however expressing gratitude feels good or right for you is the right way. Keep it uncomplicated. Also be sincere when you do it. Don't force it, because forcing it never works,
For me, I like to express gratitude when I see something beautiful in my day. Like today I saw an owl sitting in a tree on my morning walk. It was the first time I'd ever seen a live owl and it was probably the first time that owl was in that tree. I don't think they usually live in these parts. I didn't even think they lived in Australia. It was beautiful and it still grabs my heart as I type. I am so grateful for that moment. It reminds me again that life is made of these precious little moments #shelovesmoments. I find it easy to be grateful when there are so many beautiful things to be grateful for. You simply need to stay open to these moments showing up. Trust me, when you're open you'll see them.
I also like to express what I'm grateful for when I feel myself spiraling into negativity. It helps stop that spiral in its tracks. Danielle La Porte once shared a great thruthbomb:
Interrupt anxiety with gratitude.
It helps you come back to the present moment rather than dwelling on what could be or what was. And it helps rewire your brain, weakening and eventually breaking if you do it often enough, the automatic connections that led you straight to anxiety when thinking about certain things.
The continual repetition of mantras can also act like gratitude in halting unhelpful thoughts. They can replace the unhelpful thoughts too. A little like I recommend in the #5steps to cut out words that aren't working and replace them with ones that do.
The more I use mantras the more they work. But I don't just pluck any ol' mantra out of the air. I use ones that align to what I want in my life and that feel good when I try them on; when I repeat them to myself.
One mantra I'm currently repeating to myself daily is:
There is always time.
I have it written down with two other mantras on a small square piece of paper that is sitting propped against a vase on my desk. No matter where I am in the main part of my apartment I can see it, and whenever I see it I repeat them to myself.
Nothing is more powerful than breath. I believe it is the ultimate tool to calm your body, clear your head, and connect you to yourself. This is not a new revelation or one that I've ever rolled my eyes at because I've been using it since my early 20s. It was one of the key tools I used to work through my panic attacks, which I no longer suffer from, and it's a tool I use every day whenever I want to come back to the now. If you find it hard to meditate then try breathing deeply for a few moments.
Do you use any of these three practices or do you have others that you follow every day? Please share in the comments as you never know how your words may help others live creatively.