Stephen Covey’sTHE 7 HABITS OF HIGHLY EFFECTIVE PEOPLE encouraged readers to set priorities, take the initiative, and to seek win-win relationships. But in his 2004 follow-up book, THE 8th HABIT he says to be successful you must “find your voice and inspire others to find theirs.”
As a writer and actor, I think it is very important to find your voice. But where does that creativity come from? I’m not completely sure. When my creativity dries up, here are three things I do to refill the tank:
1. Read. Nothing like getting lost in a good story to stir up the imaginative juices. Read what you like. Read what you don’t like. Read fiction. Read the newspaper. Read blogs. Read. Let the flow of words and the varied structuring of sentences stimulate your own neurological pathways.
2. Observe people. Nothing like spending the day with a couple of 5-year-olds to help you see the world in a whole new way. Watch their body movements, their inability to concentrate for long periods of time, their wonder at the world. Or, spend the day with an elderly person. Listen to their stories, their struggles, their victories. Study the creases in their skin, the effort to rise from a chair, and their need to grasp stationary objects for support.
3. Daydream.Nothing like spending a few hours in nature. Something about a limitless sky, a breeze rippling a pond, or the smell of wild grasses can awaken the senses numbed by the stress of life.
What inspires your creativity?