Tapping Into Your Brain's Natural Creativity
No one knows everything there is to know about the mind or the brain. "Of all the objects in the universe, the human brain is the most complex: There are as many neurons in the brain as there are stars in the Milky Way galaxy." So who is to say that the brain does NOT have a natural flow of thought, or that this natural flow does not improve the creativity important to article writing?
Natural flow is often associated with movement that comes out of little effort, with ease, easy. And maybe Tanya Tucker sung it best, “If it don't come easy, better let it go. If it don't come easy, there's no natural flow.”
You can apply this to a lot of things in life. And no, it isn't an excuse to shirk life's responsibilities. It is, however, a perfect way to think about writing. I hope I never have to force myself to write. The day that happens is the day writing stops being fun and starts being just another job, just another day at work. So how do we write articles based on “natural flow”?
The key to natural flow writing is intermittent “mindlessness”. Brain train. I liken it to jog/sprint interval weight loss. You lose the weight without overtaxing or forcing the heart and other muscles or muscle groups to work at high intensity for long periods of time. Let's incorporate that idea into a “list”.
Let's assume you are starting your day with one or more mindless tasks-eating breakfast, brushing teeth, yadda, yadda. During your mindless shower, whether you recognize it or not, your brain was "showering" you with great ideas without you really having to force it to think.
1. Quick, as soon as your mindless tasks are done, or even in the middle of them, get to your computer, ink pen or voice recorder (LOVE these when I drive). Carve all these great ideas in stone. In other words, this becomes your “Potential Topic Idea” list. If you weren't a list maker, become one. Lists serve as reminders. Lists are your brainstorming partners. Lists hold you accountable.
2. Recognize the difference between when the ideas stop flowing and when you are trying to take over and force them to flow. Remember when you took all those tests throughout school and you were told to go with your first answer because 9 out of 10 times, it was the right one? THAT'S what I'm talking about! Just as many of us are in touch with our bodies and what our bodies tell us, this is how you get in touch with your mind and you LET, you ALLOW, your mind to tell you, instead of you telling your mind.
When you feel yourself trying to take over where your mind leaves off, recognize this point, step back, and go do something mindless. Let those previously generated ideas simmer, cook, bake, blossom, fester, materialize. I could go on. But I think you get my point. “Good things come to those who wait.”
3. Ready to actually write? Ready to COMPOSE? Determine the time of day which is your most exponentially productive, when you are most alert, when you are least distracted.
4. Look at your idea list. Start with a topic that seems to have generated the most ideas because it is the one that is obviously foremost in your mind at the time. It is the way your mind wants to go. Don't fight or force your thinking. Go with it.
5. Eliminate any ideas that don't seem to go with your selected main topic. Don't just toss them completely. Those not selected may make great articles later.
6. Use bullet points or numbers to populate shorter articles or to punctuate longer ones.
7. Keep it short or long doesn't matter, but keep it heapened up with content.
8. Writer's block? Again, don't force it. Don't force composition. It is equally as important as your topic choice. It's the meat that goes with potatoes-if you prefer vegetables. Or the potatoes that go with the meat-if you are generally more of a meatatarian type. Go do something else. Do something necessary, important, but rather mindless, like mow the lawn, take a shower, fold clothes, practice putting, or garbage can basketball, exercise. I get my best ideas in the shower, bath and driving down the road. It's almost like telling yourself not to scratch your face. Your nose will immediately begin to itch. Or write on another topic for awhile where the energy does seem to be flowing.
9. This next tip goes against my often better judgment, but in this case, don't “save the best for last.” If you have a list of ideas and you're tempted to save what you think are your better ideas for last because they are the easiest to write, DON'T. You stand a chance of losing thought momentum. Think of other areas in your life where momentum is important to accomplish a task. Same thing with writing.
10. You are not going to be able to produce the natural flow affect all day, every day. Just like losing weight, you will reach a plateau now and again. This is when you want to set a time goal, a number goal of some kind. Write the goal down. Then push yourself through to make your goal. It may not be your best work. It may not be your easiest work. But it is material worth salvaging and actually working at to develop into some of your better work.
11. To aid in the above. Be a clock watcher. This is a GOOD thing in this case. Think of when you were in grade school or junior high. In grade school, you were pushed from subject to subject in order to cover the material necessary. In junior high, the bells pulled you from class to class and subject to subject. Write like the clock matters because it does. Your peak writing performance, quantity and quality, each day could be very limited. So think “X” has to get done in “Y” time, and “Z” outcome has to be superior, grade “A” material. And then, be happy if it results in a “B”.
So to help you get in touch with your natural flow, turn on the relaxing, natural flowing water fall and river video at the bottom, close your eyes and see where it takes you. And don't forget to respect and honor the side of you that actually has to work at it other times.
Happy writing! HAPPY life!