Creativity for the Rest of Us

The Art of Disappearing – Part 1

How good are you at disappearing?  Vacation used to mean getting away from it all.  Time to rest, play, relax without the worries or concerns that envelop us at home. Savoring time without a clock or agenda  feels strange when we’re used to go-go-go and do-do-do.  It usually takes me a couple of days to settle into a slower rhythm when I get away; to keep my twitchy fingers off the keypad, not check email, let the day unfold the way it wants to.

The beauty and the challenge of technology is that a lot of us can work from anywhere.  These days it takes a bold move to go “off the grid”; to be completely out of touch, leaving work – especially email – and responsibilities completely behind.  If you’re self-employed it also takes trust.  Trust that your clients will still be there when you get back.  That they will respect your commitment to down time as much as you do.  That if you miss out on some gig while you’re away another one will show up.

Recreation comes from the Latin word recreare – to create again, renew. Creativity and renewal require downtime. Slowing your rhythm, making space, inviting in the unexpected.  It used to be I would never go anywhere without a book.  I could spend all day reading at the beach.  As much as I enjoyed that at the time, I came to realize it was a barrier between me and my surroundings.

Nowadays, what I enjoy the most is a feast for the senses – watching, gazing, listening, sensing.  I can stare at the ocean for hours and not get bored; find trees endlessly fascinating; be mesmerized by nature’s creatures.

Disappearing into nature is good for the soul.  It’s also good for nurturing your creativity.  Clearing out the cobwebs, the static, the clutter in your mind and life creates space for the new.  Noticing patterns and connections you hadn’t noticed before, weaving new combinations of  ideas together.  Hard to do this when we’re wired 24/7.

 

PRACTICE

Unplug. Disappear.  Go off the grid. Get out in nature. Whether it’s for an hour, a day, a weekend, or a week.

Listen, look, sense, stay curious and open. Give yourself a little time to get over the twitchiness.  Notice what shows up.

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