Creativity is exhausting. Making it an everyday habit is altogether a new challenge. Even if it comes naturally to you a little more so than others, it is still difficult being creative every single day.
‘Creativity is not like a tap na, jab kholo paani behna shuru’, observes Masaba Gupta, an Indian Fashion Designer on the Netflix biographical drama Masaba Masaba based on her own life.
Truly, creativity needs its own time to flourish. It requires space and freedom and inspiration.
Is there such a thing as a Creative Break?
Creativity is a tendency to recognise possibilities and solve problems. It is about using imagination to create something. It involves two processes: thinking and building. If you have ideas but you don’t act on them, you are simply imaginative but not creative.
A creative break is a break from working. You take note of your ideas but don’t pursue them. You take some time to do nothing.
What made me decide to take a Break?
Sometimes you ask yourself to do too much. Your busy brain needs rest from time to time.
One day I just didn’t feel up to it. I didn’t feel like drawing or designing. I was unmotivated to do anything productive. I guess that was it. I took an unannounced creative break for over two months.
Just a side thought, people even announce taking social media breaks these days. They remove their DP’s, set their status to blank, however they still browse through, comment and respond to posts. Weird, huh? Social media is a self promotional tool. But does someone really care if you’re not promoting yourself anymore? Except a few people who genuinely do.
Ironically, I know I’m announcing a come-back-after-break.
What did I do when I was on a Break?
I consumed a lot of content. I feel it is important to not let your mind be 100% free. A few hours of peace or an hour's worth of extra sleep is good. Not too much though. As it is said an idle mind is the devil's workshop; killing time is perhaps dangerous.
I watched a lot of video content, listened to podcasts, and read books. I even spent a lot of time browsing through e-commerce websites upgrading my wish lists for a future date. I binge-watched or I should rather say rewatched a lot of my favourite programmes.
Another side thought, have you seen those videos about turning a $20 grocery store cake into a $500 designer wedding cake with some extra icing? They are sure satisfying to watch!
Every once in a while new creative ideas would pop in my mind and I’d make a mental note. I didn’t draw or journal. My iPad would remain switched off for days due to no charging. I didn’t use any of my art supplies.
What made me come back from the Break?
Yesterday night, I felt I have had enough days off and I’m ready to come back. I pulled out a new notebook and started jotting down all the mental notes I had made earlier. Ideas kept flowing in. After an hour or two of thinking and writing ideas down I had with me a long list of personal projects. The first of which is this blog I wrote today morning.
All of these projects will come sooner or later. Some ideas are so wonderful, I’m amazed at them. I might again exhaust myself executing these but I can always take another break.