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Exploring Creativity

Posted by J Hampstead | Nov 24, 2021

“If two world-class creators share the exact same creative process, I get curious,” says Julian Shapiro, writer, podcaster and repeat start-up founder in his blog post: Creativity Faucet. He’s talking about Ed Sheeran and author Neil Gaiman and their shared creative process he calls the Creativity Faucet. The method both artists use to ‘tap’ into their strongest ideas. They let every idea flow out of them knowing that they will initially be bad before they get good. “They simply treat the brain as a pipeline for entering flow state, and they never forget that the pipe needs clearing. In every session, they allot time for emptying the wastewater.”

We found this explanation on how to generate ideas really resonated here at APATA. So, we started looking for more.

Elizabeth Gilbert says in her book Big Magic that, “Ideas are driven by a single impulse: to be made manifest.” She adds that ideas are all around us looking for a human conduit and that anybody and everybody is creative. “If you’re alive you’re a creative person. You and I and everyone you know are descended from tens of thousands of years of makers. Decorators, tinkerers, storytellers, dancers, explorers, fiddlers, drummers, builders, growers, problem-solvers and embellishers – these are our common ancestors.”

Exploring Creativity Series

We will be sharing a new series with you: Exploring Creativity, a collection of anything and anyone we believe might offer inspiration in any way. Kind of like a note pad you keep beside your bed to jot down ideas when they hit, this series will spotlight creative people and happenings from all fields because you never know what could trigger your next great idea!

5 Tips for Boosting Your Creativity

1. Catch Those Ideas

Keep a notebook close at hand ready to catch those ideas before they start to spill. Ideas icon Richard Branson shared on the Virgin website that he still keeps a notebook, “I always have a notebook on hand. My secret ‘life hack’ has been to write it down!  I can’t tell you where I’d be if I hadn’t had a pen on hand to write down my ideas as soon as they come to me.”  Other great minds known to rely on notebooks are Frida Kahlo, Pablo Picasso, Ernest Hemingway and Eminem. Notebooks and journals capture sudden thoughts, observations, conversations and all those scrappy little brain glimmers good and bad. Remember the Creativity Tap, turn it on and let it flow.


2. Stay Curious

Being open to different experiences and perspectives is a like a prerequisite for creativity. Sometimes you have to try something totally different to get your creative juices flowing. Listen to a podcast, read a book, watch a movie in a genre you normally avoid. Try dancing if you’re a singer, try singing if you’re a writer. Build a birdhouse, paint, draw, learn anything new because that could spark your next creative fire.


3. Take Time Out

Will Centurion sends out words of wisdom every Sunday. He calls it: Self Care Sunday and this checklist is saved to our Instagram folder. Taking time out to check-in or check out has become globally recognised as a mental health booster and a super important factor when it comes to well being and re-fuelling creativity.

4.  Seek Out Reverse Mentors

We really like this one. In the book “Creative Confidence: Unleashing the Creative Potential Within Us All,” Tom and David Kelley recommends finding a reverse mentor, “Somebody who may or may not be 5, 10, 15, 20 years younger than you who is exposed to insight, trends or new ideas you might otherwise miss. The easiest way to do this is, for example, take them to lunch every second Thursday for the next six weeks. Explain that you want them to expand the horizon looking for stuff you should know about it. Whether it’s how to use WhatsAPP or a trend in the retail business or what people are talking about in the nightclubs of L.A. You’ll be so much smarter; you’ll have so much more stimulus. … People tell me this really turns up their creativity.”

In our Podcast with MC Trey this time last year she explained that the young people she meets through her social and community work are a terrific inspiration, “They’ve always got ideas to make things better. Whatever topic it is these young people have a lot of the answers to issues and problems that we’re trying to get through. You have to encourage them to be part of the process to help make things better.”

5. Show Your Work

Talia Rowley, Founder of Script and Scribe Creations delivers Aussie scripts for young performers. Talia introduced us to her version of the 80/20 rule on the first APATA podcast for 2021 and it is still something that we use to keep the creativity blockers at bay. Perfection does not exist. Perfection will kill off good ideas and keep them locked in drawers and filing cabinets. If it’s 80% ready put it out in the world. Show your work. Have courage.

Again, from Elizabeth Gilbert’s Big Magic we will sign off with this (for now), “While the paths and outcomes of creative living will vary wildly from person to person, I can guarantee you this: A creative life is an amplified life. It’s a bigger life, a happier life, an expanded life, and a hell of a lot more interesting life. Living in this manner – continually and stubbornly bringing forth the jewels that are hidden within you – is a fine art, in and of itself.”


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