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Improv: "Creative Blocks" and the New Year

Improv: "Creative Blocks" and the New Year

As the year comes to a close, the last few days tend to feel like the most daunting of all.

We find ourselves scurrying to get as much done as humanly possible in 2016, to accomplish something impossible, to check off two more of last year's resolutions, which you'll no doubt be re-writing into your notes as we speak, to eat as much junk food and as many *insert candy of choice* as you can shove into one day because that yoga schedule/detox/fitness program you signed up for starts on January 1st.

And of course to get to all the parties on time, and leave early enough to beat traffic and make it to the next one.

The week between Christmas and New Years Eve can be draining. You want to stay home and go out and do both together because FOMO is a very very real thing.

Now that it is finally December 31st and the week has come to a close, conveniently on a Saturday, we can take a moment to reflect.

As a writer, I tend to feel tired and striving to find inspiration at this point. Something to help me pick up, dust off, and start the new year with a fresh creative outlook.

I find the best solution for this can be to give yourself a mental vacation - if you haven't taken a physical one - or both. Anyone in a creative field will know that work never really stops, and your mind is always churning. What works for me may not work for others, but in general my advice is to entertain spontaneous moments of creativity and allow yourself room to play in the coming month.

If you're a writer, do some improv off the top of your head and type it in Notes on your phone.

If you draw, then sketch randomly whatever you want and wherever you want.

If you're a musician, attend an open mic night - of which there are many this time of year - or jam with your friends with no aim in mind.

We have an "Improv" section in Radical for a reason, and that reason is that giving yourself space to improvise without worrying about the end result is one of the most important parts of the creative process.

Below is my Improv for the week. This is our last post before the New Year and so we want to wish all our wonderful readers a blessed year to come full of love, success and gratitude. 

I stood in front of a naked wall.

It was not white nor blue nor milky yellow. It was naked. It had no grooves and no bumps, the paint was smooth as lake water after the birds had flown north and the fish had sunk deep. No signs of life or vitality had ever touched it, I suspect it had been built years ago. By a man who had intended it to be merely a functional thing, a lifeless thing. 

I wanted to make it alive. To infuse it with so much mystery that it made people stop and stare and wonder.


The End.

Ps. The artwork in this post is by Samuel Burgess Johnson. If you're ever lost and need inspiration, his page comes highly recommended. We'll be posting an article on him in the coming weeks.

The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt.
— Sylvia Plath
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