A Suprising Practice to Boost Your Creativity

still life with vegetables isolated on brown background

It’s here!  Day 21 of my 21 Day Purification.

No matter how many times I detox, it’s always different. I continue to be amazed at what comes up for examination. I get to look at people, patterns, and projects from a different perspective and notice how each contributes to or detracts from my health and well-being.

One thing that doesn’t change is the thrill of crossing the finish line.

Don’t get me wrong.  Day 22 is going to look very much like Day 21.  If I’ve learned anything in the last 21 days, it’s that my body and brain love it when I clean up my act and eat whole, nutritious meals that I consciously plan and prepare.

Knowing this and practicing it on a daily basis are two different things. Doing the 21 Day Purification puts the practice part up front and center for enough days to become a habit. This is deceptively difficult to do. But once the habit is established, it’s easier to continue with the practice than to stop and start all over again.

The thing I look forward to the most is not watching the pounds melt off (because sometimes they don’t) but witnessing how much better my brain works and how much quicker my creativity kicks in. My increased energy level is sustainable with no slumps or spikes. I can focus easier and think clearer.

Artists are often given a wide berth in the bad behavior department.  It’s like we’ve unconsciously bought into the belief that great talent is too much for mere mortals.  So we put ourselves in an altered state and drink, drug, smoke, gamble, screw, or spend ourselves silly in order to be worthy of our creative inheritance.

The truth is the only altered state we need to be in is one of mindful presence and persistence mixed with a hint of humility. Genius will gladly guide us if we ask it to and clear some space for it to work its wonders.

A few years ago I decided that in order to do my best work, I had to be my best self. I had to feel good in the skin I was in and my brain had to be firing on all cylinders. I couldn’t do that if I was subtly or not so subtly sabotaging my own success.

If I numbed myself out with excessive sugar, overloaded on carbs, or jacked myself up on caffeine, I ended up with the kind of thoughts that lead people to believe they’re good dancers after several drinks.

The kind of consistent creativity I cultivate now comes from having my physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual ducks in a row.

It turns out that after years of wandering around the desert, studying with gurus, and practicing all kinds of alternative paths to crack the creative code, the surprising practice I overlooked was accessible all along. What I eat and how I nourish myself dramatically impact the quality and quantity of my creative output. Input really does equal output.

I can con myself into thinking creativity is a mysterious practice based on the whims of a capricious muse. Or I can clean myself up and invite it over for a healthy, nutritious meal, followed by a walking meeting.

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What about you?  When do you feel your best?  How do you invite creativity into your day?  Share if you dare in the comments below.

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