Getting inspired to create

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How do I find inspiration for something to write bout?

It is few and far between some days. I feel like the busier my life gets, the less creative and imaginative I feel. The more I jam pack into my days and on to my “to do lists” the less room there is for creativity to flow, for ideas to marinate and expand.

I hate being busy. What a buzz kill, man.

I do have some fall back ways, however. Things I know I can do, to slow life down and to find inspiration. You know? Really light up and tap into my creative side.

What works for me, I know has always worked for me. These are my tried and trues.

Nature time

I know when I go into nature and peace-out from the noisy city world, specifically when I go on my own, that my heart and mind start to slow down. Its like every cell in my body breathes a collective sigh of relief… “ahhhhhh“…

There is something about being among the threes and the greenery of a hike that just hits my reset button and lights up my heart. Maybe it’s the peace and quiet. Maybe it’s just feeling at home and feeling undistracted. Whatever it is, when I am in nature, in the woods, on a hike… everything else just settles away and I get real with myself again.

I often have wondered when I have been on those paths and among the trees of thick dense nature, how many pains and hurts have been pounded into the dirt… walked into the earth… how many sighs of relief have been exhaled, as the weight of the world melted away… how many secrets and thoughts that the trees has absorbed by hearing friends vent and share, or how many times trees have just picked up and gently pulled away the bad vibes or sad thoughts that individuals carry when they arrive, before they have relaxed and settled into the peace that surrounds them.

Nature is a miracle worker.

This is where I reset the best, to find inspiration and motivation to write. This is one of my happiest places to be. The place I feel most like myself.

Clear your space

I don’t know about you, but my work space… whether it be a table or a desk or a couch… it needs to be uncluttered. The weird thing is, I feel like my creative mind reflects the state around me. If I have literal space, a tidy work area or simply an obvious display of what I’m working on, I create faster. If my work space is cramped and messy, then my mind feels small and messy. If there are too many projects and “things” spread out across my work area, I feel like there are too many “things” or thoughts in my cluttered brain, too. I make space to feel space. And that’s when I feel things can flow more freely and how I tap into inspiration and creativity quicker.

Conversations and inspiration 

I love Super Soul Conversations with Oprah and her guests. I listen to youtube videos or podcasts and absorb all the wisdom and treasures of the thoughts that are being shared. They are such powerful and spirit-filled conversations, I just want to be in them, too. I listen intentionally, not to steal ideas or think, ohhh Im going to write about that, but instead I listen because often it makes me question things inside of my own heart, which leads to ah-ha moments, which can lead to creativity and inspiration.

In a recent podcast I listened to on Super Soul Conversations, Oprah had Iyanla Vanzant on as her guest. What a conversation this was.  Iyanla said, “you know you’re completely out of alignment when you’re not at peace.” I thought to myself, whoa.

Why did that hit me so boldly? Because I dont feel at peace most days. It got me wondering, where could I be out of alignment? And so, some inside work began. I start to look at myself and take the wisdom shared and attach what feels right, to something in my life. In this case, her one simple sentence has cause a week long pondering which has in turn lead to a fork in the road… which in turn has lead me to make some tough decisions. Wow, right? And it’s from these moments of totally getting real with myself, that creativity and inspiration arises.

Unplug

When I need to feel my creative side be nurtured, I get offline. I walk away from Facebook. I put down my phone. I tune myself out. I unplug from the constantly buzzing, turned on, tech savvy world, and I turn myself off and settle into a meditation.

Sometimes this can be easier said then done.

I, for one, can not just stop thoughts from flowing and stop worries from surfacing. Or stop my mind from wandering back to the vacation photos I saw on Facebook, for example. No. Abruptly stopping my thoughts like that just does not happen.

But I move to a place of meditation, simply to focus on breathing in long slow inhales and long slow exhales. After a few minutes of doing this, I feel my body, heart and mind to begin to slow down. The more I slow down, the more of the mental clutter can start to fall away.

And the more mental clutter that falls away, the more room for spacious creativity to emerge or for spirit and angels to enter in and do the communicating. Rather than my ego-brain yapping about Facebook and what everyone else is up to.

There are many different ways we can grow our creative and inspired side, when we have a desire to do so. Less is more, in my opinion. Start removing noise, distractions, thoughts and people, and more space, inspiration and creativity will emerge.

It takes some work and maybe even some planning to get there, but it is so worth it. To be in that flow, that space, that light.

I hope you go there.

Sending love, hugs and butt slaps…

xoxo

McDooogs

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How to maximize your weekend

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Do you ever feel like you just don’t have enough time on the weekends? I mean, Friday hits and, YES, it’s here! But then you blink and it’s Sunday night and you think, where did the time go? What did I do with my life the last two days?

It can be such a bummer, man.

I’ve figured out a few ways that help ME make the most of my personal time on weekends. Curious? Well, I got you babe. Here are some of the things I do and don’t do, to ensure I maximize the free time and what I feel like I got from it.

  1. I don’t do laundry.

For me, laundry is done on either Wednesday or Thursday nights. I use the following morning to fold it and put it away. I find if I tack on an hour or two during the evening in the week, I can save myself that much more time for fun stuff on the weekend.

  1. I plan me time.

I absolutely plan myself some “me time.” For the most part, I know what I want my weekends to look like. And so by the time Friday comes around, I know that Saturday morning I am hiking by myself or I know that I have carved out an hour for yoga at noon on Sunday or plan to read alone in my backyard Sunday evening. I literally schedule myself something that I know will feed my soul. And then as plans come up for the weekend and time slips away, I’m already committed to something for me, and I won’t be chaotically trying to cram it in somewhere.

  1. I plan social time.

I like to have something specific “booked in” at a certain time on a certain day. So, whether it is drinks at a pub Friday night, a walk with a girlfriend Saturday afternoon or coffee with my sister Sunday, I know when my social time is coming and, again, I can plan around it. I know this might seem weird and rigid. But, for me, it works better for me to know a layout, rather than just continuously reacting to all that is thrown at or offered to me.

  1. I don’t do any trips to the grocery store, if I can help it.

I would just way rather spend my weekend on me, right? Are you seeing my theme here yet? Having fun and unwinding (rather than already being in the next week, by prepping for the next week) is how I try to build my weekends and free time. Don’t get me wrong, it is important to know what is going to happen in the next week for yourself. But I don’t give anytime to Monday, until Monday happens. Does that make sense? Be where you are, when you are there.

So instead of going to the grocery store on Sunday like most peeps, and getting all their new food and produce for the week, I also choose a weekday to do this. Typically, the grocery store is less busy weekday nights.  So, I add on less than hour to the end or start of my day during the week, and that means I don’t have to give away any more of my precious time on the weekend.

  1. I dial down.

Sundays are usually my day to detox from social media and emails. Sometimes I do the whole day, and sometimes I start this detox Sunday afternoon and carry it through to the next morning. Why? Because we waste SO much time scrolling and liking and comparing our lives on Facebook, instagram or twitter.

I want to savor all my free time and not only that, I don’t want to create any stress or anxiety by going through work emails before the work week has even started. Monday mornings don’t start Sunday night. Don’t get into work mode before the weekend is over. Force yourself to hold off on work stuff until your – gasp – back at work.

  1. One day of my weekend, I get up early.

It feels good to get up early on the weekend and see ALL the hours ahead of me that are mine to play with. Sometimes if I sleep late, I find that I am playing catch up on the day. So, one of my days off I set an alarm to rise and shine. It really depends on what you have going on that day and if this will work for you. But for me, it makes my weekend feel a little bit longer. Which is what I’m going for.

  1. But I also sleep in, at least one day.

It also feels good to just cruise and start the day slow. Especially if I was up late the night before. If I know I am going to allow myself a good sleep in with no alarms, then I am less likely to feel “guilty” about not getting up and making the most of my time. Because in this case, I AM making the most of my time. You really have to honor what your body needs and sometimes it’s just a great big snooze. I am also a big fan of naps. Just saying.

  1. I don’t hang out with people just because I feel like I “should.”

Heres the thing. Your time is precious. Do you beleive that? Just because you have free time, and Susie-the-brat asked you to go for drinks, doesn’t mean you have to go if you don’t want to see Susie-the-brat. Yes you have free time, and yes you feel like going out for drinks would be fun. But don’t give any of your time or energy away to energy vampires. Hang out with people you really want to hang out with, hang out with people you know are going to leave you feeling lifted up and loved. Ditch the shoulds. Go for the good vibes only.

  1. I don’t clean.

Again, this is something I tack on during my week days, where ever possible. An hour or so added to a day or two during the week doesn’t seem so bad when you know you won’t have to devote anytime to it on the weekend. It’s like getting your homework done and then being free.

Work hard during the week, play harder on the weekend.

  1. I work out, but work out in the morning.

I love to get a good sweat on any day of the week, but for my time to be maximized I do it in the mornings. The gym is usually quiet, I only shower once, right after the work out, and I’m also set up for hydration and healthy eating for the rest of the day.

Hope this helps you make the most of your weekend. Play with it, focus on what makes you feel good, and what works with your life. The point is to make YOU happy, so however that works for you, go for it!

Happy Friday!

Xoxo

McDooogs

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