Kickstarting Creativity From Home

The start of a new year brings with it new ideas on how to improve yourself and the hope for potential growth. If you’re anything like me, then those resolutions look a little different this year. Many of us are still working from home, quarantining and having limited social contact for the foreseeable future. So how can we try to make progress towards those goals with these considerations? Specifically, how can we improve in our creative outlets when our physical surroundings are often our own home and casually browsing stores isn’t quite as easy? Let’s make the most out of what we have and try some new strategies to get those creative juices flowing and kickstart 2021 in a positive way!

Try Looking on the Positive Side
It’s easy to get bogged down with everything going on in the world, but the impact of surrounding yourself with positivity is profound. Try following accounts on social media that make you happy. This can be an artist whose work you like looking at, a band whose music you enjoy or a poet who speaks to your soul. Unfollow those accounts that make you self-conscious or do not bring you happiness. There are so many amazing creators out there that can provide you with inspiration, useful tips and encouragement on your creative journey. Another great way to jump-start your creative side and to learn something new is to watch YouTube videos. There are so many tutorials out there that you could learn just about anything from watching videos and the chances of you getting a new idea skyrocket when you open yourself up to new hobbies or new ways of doing things.

Another one of my favorite things to do when I’m in a slump is grateful lists. It’s exactly what it sounds like- I just make a list of all the things I am grateful for at the moment, both big and small. This often includes good food, my family and friends, a nice rainy day, a good book or a favorite song. Not only does this put me in a good mood, but it’s also a great way to start generating new ideas. Are you grateful for a particular house plant that’s been flourishing? Try painting it! Are you grateful for your cozy home? Maybe you can knit a new blanket to go in it! There are so many different ways you can take your grateful list and that’s part of the beauty.

Find Inspiration Around You
The walls of your home are probably looking a little dull right now after nearly a year of looking at them. However, many of us have had more time to spend at home than ever before. Why not spend some of that time truly appreciating the things around you? Similar to the grateful lists, it’s easy to observe the things in or around your home that you particularly enjoy. Find the beauty in the tree in your front yard or take time to admire your favorite piece of wall art. Spend time observing things that you’d normally just scan over and make note (either physically or mentally) of what you find. From here, you can create something else from what you note, like observing a purple pillow you love and drawing your own style of the pattern on it. Or noting that you love jewelry and deciding to learn how to make polymer clay accessories. Surrounding yourself with things you love is beneficial, but realizing what you love and why you love it is even more important because that will help you continue to learn about your personality and creativity.

Use What is Easily Available to You
Pre-pandemic, I loved going to Michael’s and just walking through the aisles until I found a craft that sparked my interest. I haven’t been able to do that in a while, but I have added to my ever-growing pile of craft supplies. That’s because getting the supplies to try something new doesn’t have to be hard! Many craft stores can easily ship supplies to your home or offer curbside pick-up. Online shopping may be a change for many of us, but it does allow us to stay safe and browse many affordable options. If you are trying to save money or don’t want to shop for new things, you can still find things around the house to create with! My quarantine project has been making paper and I haven’t had to buy any supplies at all! I just used some old mesh to create a form, shred up my junk mail and old paper, soak it in water, and an old sheet to let it dry. You’d be surprised by what you can repurpose into something awesome.

Change Up Your Routine
Last but not least, try switching up your day-to-day. Working from home and also playing at home can be monotonous, so make an effort to step aside from your usual place where you get work done. Spend 15 minutes doing something to break up that monotony- walking outside or around your house, researching a new sewing technique, trying a new recipe or whatever else you find interesting. Taking this time to step aside will give your battery time to recharge and your brain time to rest.

This is all fine and dandy to read, but the real progress begins when you take that first step and just do something. It can be so hard to try a new form of creativity, but allow yourself that space to try new things and work in a different way because making the decision to show up is the biggest step. If it’s hard or doesn’t end up the way you imagined, keep going! If it’s fun and easy, keep going! Just keep trying new things until you find what sets your soul on fire. And then remember to share what you create with a sister!

Hannah Kois, ΘΨ

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