As a creative with an overactive imagination, sometimes I find it getting the better of me. I feel overwhelmed by thoughts and sometimes even scared, especially when I dream.
I find certain things in life distract this chaos and help me masses when trying to relax without thinking up a new plot line for a novel or a horrific scene in my head for the next short story competition. Here are a few things that help me distract my creative brain:
Something I don’t do enough and miss it when I haven’t made time to read, but it is something that helps me lose myself in this busy world and escape into another one.
Even if I’m not actually listening to it, I find that simply by having the radio on in the background soothes me. I also have a theory that the wisdom from shows on radio 4 subconsciously sinks in, thus upping my intelligence, but that’s just a theory!
Much like the radio, I find listening to podcasts very relaxing and a way to gain an insight into various topical discussions and learn new things away from my writing. I am also more likely to be consciously listening to a podcast which is always a good sign!
Whether it’s on my walk to work, whilst getting ready for work or on a car journey in between, music is essential to my life. I struggle to go a whole day without it. It is my saviour.
Walking is another essential to the structure of my days and a nice break from my writing. Sometimes if writers block is looming, a nice stroll will soon sort it out.
Being with those closest to me is an obvious candidate for distracting my creative brain and exchanging scary story lines for happy thoughts. If simply being doesn’t work instantly which it usually does, then I find talking about ideas I’ve had or dreams that are bothering me helps.
Being by the sea
The sea is amazing in both chilling me out down to the core and springing up new ideas within my creative side. I wrote a lot of my first novel by the sea and loved what I wrote.
Travelling and car journeys
With company or alone, I find car journeys (train or any other method of transport) a happy space in which to stop, to contemplate and to live in the moment. All of the activities in this list are about living in the moment and focusing on that to take a breath away from the chaos that is life, especially that of a creative, and travelling certainly does that.
I tend to dip in and out of mediation and yoga but I find them both very useful. If I have had a particularly busy or mind boggling shift at the stores, when I come home to write, I meditate for five minutes before doing any work. This helps me to make the shift between different types of work and puts me in the correct zone to write.
Sudoku or jigsaws, without sounding like a grandma, are great in losing myself in the moment. They require focus so my brain can’t be bombarded with other stuff but not too much that they put stress on it.