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The Creative Habit

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The Creative Habit

In my first ministry track, I have been assigned Twyla Tharp's book, The Creative Habit. Tharp is a respected choreographer who throughout her career has taken many steps to figure out how to learn creativity and use it. Her book entails her top five ideas she has learned to be most successful in generating a creative habit. This week I started to read the first two chapters in my book which discussed her first habit, the value of ritual.

The first chapter, I Walk Into A White Room, gives us a little insight on Twyla Tharp's journey and the beginnings of creativity. She starts by stating that all creatives have a clean slate no matter if you are a dancer, painter, writer, etc. Tharp says, "The routine is as much a part of the creative process as the lightning bolt of inspiration, maybe more. And this routine is available to everyone." She notes that the turning something into a ritual eliminates the ever-occurring question "Why am I doing this?" so that your own habit turns into something that produces a predictable outcome. "Everything is raw material. Everything is relevant. Everything is usable. Everything feeds into my creativity. But without proper preparation, I cannot see it, retain it, and use it. Without the time and effort invested in getting ready to create, you can be hit by the thunderbolt and it'll just leave you stunned." Thinking about how I can apply this to my media schedule, I have set aside a few little routines I do before I begin working. First, I pray for God's creativity to flow since He is the Ultimate Creator. Second, I look through Pinterest for inspiration whether I have some existing ideas already or not. Third, I always keep Photoshop and or Illustrator running at all times.

In the second chapter, Rituals of Preparation, Tharp hits on rituals, fears, and distractions of creativity. She starts out by warning everyone that, "Once executed, the idea will never be as good as it is in my mind." Not all of our work will be perfect, but this is something we have to accept as part of the process. The one personal thing that can ease our mind is that in the end there is no one ideal condition for creativity. What works for one person is useless for another. Tharp stresses to make it easy on yourself, which I have found to be the best news ever. Tharp

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