What are Your Creative Patterns and Processes?

This is the sixth of 7 blogs on releasing your creative potential.

A lot of artists shy away from words like structure or discipline. They think it somehow limits their creative potential – that it’s a presumptive usurping of the muse that inspires them. Maybe it is. But perhaps there are a couple of other ways to look at this.

First, structure is not mutually exclusive with inspiration or the touch of the muse. You can, and probably should, create out of a place of structure, as well as inspiration.

Inspiration will strike and it is very important to tap into it when it hits. However, the muse is fickle and unpredictable. It’s often an unplanned alchemy of circumstances that moves us.

Secondly, discipline can help create those very circumstances which inspire you.

Structure is anything and everything that fosters creativity. An example: when an artist experiences others’ work she is infected, and will often (sometimes immediately) produce her own song, story or painting.

Structure (meaning: places and times you commit to producing art) will help you to become who you are as an artist. This consistent, driving effort surfaces your creative being, revealing the depths of not only your artistry, but who you are as a person. It is a conscious effort to lay ourselves open. This exposure of our core unveils who we are, not only to ourselves, but to others. Perhaps that’s one of the reasons we fight discipline.

Go for it anyway! Start by describing your times and places for productivity. Let your structure morph and evolve over time.

Here are a couple questions you can use for self-coaching. Share your thoughts in the comments section or contact me directly.

  • What structures (habits, goals, actions, etc.) do you use to maximize creativity?
  • How can you maximize your creative environment – the place(s) you create?

For deeper thought…

    • Where do you create?
    • What amount of time do you commit to creativity?
    • What goals do you set for your work? Do you revisit your goals and modify as needed?
    • What obstacles stand in the way of structure for you? How can you overcome these obstacles?
    • What support or accountability will help you stay disciplined?


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