Creativity is Found “Outside The Fish Bowl”

As a marketer and creative person, my brain is split 50/50. I can think about numbers and strategy with a balanced creative outlet to make a plan come alive. Most of my marketing efforts are done online with today’s technology support. Truth be told, only half of my creativity is found online. ::gasp:: I love to browse on Pinterest and read articles, but when I am offline my creativity gains momentum.

When you work on similar projects over and over, how do you stay sharp? What sparks your creativity? My sister has always told me to, “Think outside the fish bowl“. And she is absolutely correct.

I have made it a healthy habit to eat lunch away from any technology or device. I try to communicate with those around me (if someone is there). And if not, I pick up a book or magazine and start reading. I try to stay off technology so I can recharge my brain. When I am flipping through a magazine, I try to find inspiration in whatever project I am working on. I read through a book and write down great quotes.

How do you nourish your creativity? What methods work best for you?

Source credit: Social Outlier |  Words: RT Consulting

9 ways to “Think Outside the Fish Bowl”

  1. Subscribe to different magazines to catch up on industry trends. The top of my list are Entrepreneur Magazine, Inc., Oprah, Health Magazine, and Jacksonville Magazine.
  2. Read an industry/business book on a regular basis. I have a habit of ready many book at the same time. I go back and forth. The books on my bookshelf are: Creativity for Sale by Jason SurfrApp, The Business Side of Creativity by Cameron S. Foote, and Start Your Own Business by Entrepreneur Press.
  3. Exercise. Seriously. The more I exercise the less tension I have in my body. I light weights and balance it out with cardio. I drink lots of water (after my morning blueberry juice and coffee) throughout the day to stay hydrated. My mind spins around all day with ideas and when I workout, it boosts something inside me to do it again another day.
  4. Meditation and pray. It has been said you have to work for a work/life balance. When you have a focus on what is important and what isn’t, life goes smoother. When you mediate on this and pray over it, life’s goals are within reach.
  5. Get off technology and network, mingle, and mean it. We are all behind a desk or pushing the deadline. A genuine connection offline can enhance who you are and your work performance. Try it.
  6. Watch a movie. What is your favorite movie of all time? If you had to stop and think about it, you need to disconnect more. Life is about sharing experiences with one another. A movie is a great way to use your imagination.
  7. Make a dream/vision board. I love how my mom and Nicole Sanchez live out their dreams. Both have shared with me the dreams they have for their life and show me. It comes in the form of a few magazine clippings, words, drawings, and crafy things in between to bring their dream to life.
  8. Get back with nature. I like to garden. I loathe doing yard work. When I am walking around in my backyard, I soak it all in. The humid air, sun shine, birds chirping, and my vegetable plants growing. Nature never ceases to amaze me as it is constantly evolving.
  9. Write your thoughts down. Thoughts are fleeting through our mind every day. When you write them down so you can go back to them and evolve them.

The Day I Lost My Strength and Regained A Power I Forgot I Had

When you think of the word strength, the most common definition comes to mind. Simply put, to be strong is to have power. I believe we all have a certain level of strength (or power) inside us propelling us through life. Some people may or may not agree with this.

Strength

Earlier this week, I was having a really bad day. I know days like this happen on occasion but it is the day I lost my strength. I was working on a holiday with less sleep, dealing with grumpy people, and felt physically and mentally tired. I had a choice: give in to negative, power-sucking thoughts or brace myself and start to think positive and move forward. Can you guess what I chose?

I lost my strength to fight through this rough day and felt powerless. My smile quickly turned into a smirk. My hopefully eyes had gone still. The encouraging spirit I carry with me was on the defense. I had become a defenseless and angry shell of a body. The thought of punching a wall, or someone in the face was on the forefront of my mind. I’m serious.

To my surprise, others started to notice my weakness. (I thought I was hiding it somehow.) I received encouraging words and hugs from people I once helped before. I was offered an arm to punch to throw this *funk* out of my system but I declined. And then someone shared how he had regained his strength. He accepted it and moved on. He exercised to mentally prove to himself he has power left in his body. He had told me, “The mind needed a reminder to tell the rest of your body, you are still in control of it.” Does that make any sense? It did for me.

Later that evening, I wanted to cry out my negative emotions and welcome in new ones. Unfortunately, it was beyond tears. I laced up my running shoes and walked outside to my garden. As I watered new life around me, I felt a smile form across my face. With running shoes on, I convinced myself I can tire myself out by running.

RLT - garden 2014

30 minutes later I was sweating, bursting with endorphins, and with a clearer thought: you are an unstoppable force. I wanted to run a mile without stopping, and I did it! I had ran one mile in 12:41 and walked/run my second mile in 15:44.

RunKeeper - RLT stats

I could have stayed home and stayed in my *funk*, or embrace it and fight back. By fighting back, I regained a source a strength to overcome what had taken over me.

If you LIKE my business page on Facebook, you will see a common thing happening on Fridays I call a “Friday Focus”. The topic varies by what you suggest or what comes to mind. My goal is to help YOU, the reader, to take away something valuable than you may not have considered before. If you want to contribute to an upcoming Friday Focus, please leave me a comment and we can make it happen.

Evolve Your Ideas in Three Steps

“I have an idea, but I don’t know where to start…” Does this sound familiar? Throughout the day I get a lot of ideas, but I don’t know where to start.

Here are a few steps that can help you evolve your idea from just a thought into a plan of action.

  1. Write it down. Chances are the idea you have is really good, why not write it down to remember it later.
  2. Set a start or end date. When I have a “due” date, I am usually scrambling a few days prior to get it done. But guess what? It gets done. Some people work better with projected starting dates. Try either method that will help you start evolving the idea.
  3. Once the parameters are set, now what? If it’s something I know someone has done before, I will reach out to him or her to gain insight. If it is something I am not sure who has done something like this before, I check out Pinterest.com

Evolve Your Ideas in Three Steps

 

What is Pinterest? Think of a message board that is made out of cork. You pin reminders and other clippings on it. Now, think of it as a virtual message board with multiple purposes. I have a “board” for cooking, advertising, blogging, green love, and marine clippings or “pins”.

How can Pinterest help me? When you sign up, you can browse through the website. If you use a search engine like Bing or Google, you would type in a search request. Now, try doing the same thing on Pinterest and see what comes up. Pinterest is my new Google.

I made an account and a board, now what? Chances out someone has blogged about your idea and shared his or her own experience. When you collect enough “pins” about your idea, start brainstorming. Maybe your idea needs a little visual inspiration. Look at the “pins” to see how you are doing to evolve your idea. If you need a process to get started, try clicking on the image you have “pinned” to read someone’s blog how he or she got started.

And as always, if you need any help you know where to find me. Leave a comment below or tweet to me on Twitter at @IamRachalT. Find and follow me on Pinterest at IamRachalT.

Your Thoughts Have Power Over You

@MyPowerTalkI had an agenda to write about something else, but my thoughts took me on a different route. I started rattling off what was not working for me. I was full of hope because I had peace knowing things would change. At the end of my rant, I had mixed emotions. My mind was telling me “you’re stuck…” but the small voice arguing with my mind was telling me, “Don’t give up before you even try.”

Where do I go from here?

The power of our thoughts are far beyond our imagination. Like attracts like. I have told myself “What I think, I become” and needed to remind myself thoughts have power. Your thoughts have power over you and your ability. Either you accept the challenge or accept defeat. There is no middle ground.

Source credit:  www.Notsalmon.com

What are you telling yourself today?

Remind yourself why you are on this path and the rest will fall into place. If you allow doubt to enter your world, doubt will come. When you believe you are moving in the right direction, envision what the next check point will look like. Make a vision board of what you want to accomplish while you are on this journey.

Surround yourself with positive reinforcement.

Share your dreams with someone who believes in you. Read encouraging material to realign your life. When you know it is a battlefield in your mind, prepare yourself to knock out the negative and replace it with the positive.

Successful People vs. Unsuccessful People

After exploring LinkedIn, I came across an article that caught my attention posted by Milan entitled “Good and Bad Reasons to Became an Entrepreneur“. It’s worth reading to check if you should start working for yourself. The road of an entrepreneur isn’t always clear. Sometimes you have to move forward knowing success will find you by the work you have done.

I stumbled across this visual that brought a smile across my face. Thank you, Kailee for sending it to me!

You have heard me say it once and I will say it again; Rome wasn’t built in a day. I’m not going to see the fruit of my labor until the work has been done. I am putting in the work to push myself when I want to give up. I am following a routine to keep going after what makes me happy. Successful habits bring forth success.

Am I doing the right thing?

“If you’re going to devote the best years of your life to your work, have enough love for yourself and the world around you to work on something that matters to you deeply.” Justin Rosenstein

“When we are satisfied with the WHY, behind the WHAT we do; we tend to gain more success.” Tim Carter

Channel Your Creativity

Some of us are born creative while others have to work at it. Honestly, I am a combination of both.

I read a lot of material (book, online media, magazines) from different industries to gain a head knowledge of them. This way, when I am proposing an idea to a client, I have industry examples to show what everyone is doing and what we can do different.

photo

Two quotes + me at work = How I channel my creativity

I think we can all agree we carry our cell phone or tablet wherever we go, right? I tend to carry a blue ink pen and a notebook. With the power of my cell phone to take instant pictures and my notebook to log my thoughts and feelings, I have the perfect combination to channel my creative ideas.

What are some ways you find and channel your creativity?

Whatever I think, I become

A new month is a new month. We know it happens because we have seen it over and over again. A new way of thinking is something we have to work for every single day. When a new month approaches, I make a habit to reflect on how productive my business was in the past 30 days.

If I can be honest with you, April was a great month. I went on a family vacation and flew over to NYC for a client conference. All this sounds great and the events that took place truly were! It’s when I got back from this high, I hit an all-time low. I saw my funds and what was coming up. I got upset. I knew I was doing great things with my business but my banking account didn’t show it.

I was in a solitary funk. I knew I had a mountain of uncertainty in front of me. Can I go on? How can I get around this? I knew if I was going to climb out of this funk, I had to change my thinking.

Why doubt my ability now when I have come so far to get here? Every day I wake up and ask for strength and purpose. Has my purpose changed since I accepted the gifting I have used to build my business? No. I just let my mindset get the best of me by thinking I could float through the seasons. I need to encourage myself with a new mindset everyday to move instead of standing still for too long.

I know whatever I think I become; therefore, I want to think great things so I can become someone who succeeded in pursing their dreams.

I Think, I Become

Photo credit:  Beautiful Scenery Wallpaper

I’ll Tell You Once, I’ll Tell You Twice

If you have experienced déjà vu, then you can relate to what is going to be said in this post. If you haven’t, déjà vu is an occurrence or illusion of experiencing something that was encountered for the first time. This is to suggest that the realization comes from the real event taking place reflecting on the thought that it had previously occurred. Others might call this intuition or fate taking its course, but I believe it’s God giving me guidance.

Reading those words might shake up some people, but be patient with me. For as long as I could remember, I always had this insight before I took any action. I would be lost in thought and something would interrupt my thoughts, which took my previous thoughts further. To give an example, I will share a story with you.

A few weeks back, I was working in the front office and a female customer came up wanted to play lotto. As she got her tickets out to check, she made a gesture to pray but in a way I knew that was not sincere. Ok, most people would not think twice about this but I am not like most people. I started to think to myself and knew she was not really mocking God, and then something gave me the thought it was possible she was lacking true faith that goes behind her prayers. At first I ignored my thoughts, but as I told her she had did not win any money, she said, “Well the Lord doesn’t want me to win this time. Here, play these” as she handed me more tickets. I am not suggesting her faith would have given her a winning lottery ticket, but her prayer was an empty promise. The words empty promise burned in my mind. Before handing her the tickets she had played, I had spoken out in faith.

In a kind, gentle voice I said,  “Please forgive me, but I know you weren’t mocking God earlier, but I think you are putting your faith in the wrong things and are actually winning in other areas of your life other than the lottery.” I could tell I had hit a nerve and had made a connection with this woman because her eyes swelled with tears as I spoke each word.

“You know…you’re right. My bills are paid and there is food on the table to eat and a little extra for things like this. I just want more…” she said.

I nodded and asked, “Have you tried talking to God about your needs and wants instead of doing it this way?”

“I need to talk to him more. I have put my faith in my own hand’s and he deserves more,” she had said.

***

By the end of the conversation, I knew those thoughts were not my own but had come from God to share his love for Wendy. Now, when we see one another we encourage each other and see where God is playing in our lives.

I hope that gives you a better understanding of what I am talking about when I say my thoughts get interrupted and are taken to a new level. God does that do me and he did it again this morning. I read a Joyce Meyer: Promises for Your Everyday Life and reread the same devotion from yesterday today. I could have skipped it and I told myself to go on and read today’s devotion, but my thoughts got interrupted telling me this was meant to be read twice. With the encouragement I have received the past two days, I want to share this with you:

God could be telling you right now to get up and get on with your dream or vision, your assignment, your life, because He is giving it to you. Your part is to walk it out. 

Do what you need to do. It may not be easy. It might take some time. But trust God and go for whatever it is. Look from the place where you are right now – and go! (Genesis 13:14)

I told you once, I’ll tell you twice about another event that took place in my life. Just about two hours ago I was getting my books for my two post-graduation classes I start today. As I was checking out with Amanda, she noticed I was purchasing a writing and fundraising book and asked if I was taking a non-profit class. I told her the title and how I had experience with an advertising agency and now wanted to try the other side. I thought,  a balance of both worlds. She proceeded to tell me about a club that meets and aids classes like this to give students opportunities to network and career shadow in the non-profit sectors. We both had business minors and felt led to help those in need.

God has talked to me a lot this past year. I have done what I wanted to do, and now it’s time to follow what he wants me to do:  trust in him more. I graduated in Communications for advertising because I wanted to embrace my creativity. Through that I know I am uniquely made to enjoy left-brain and right-brain tasks like research and engaging in creative forms. During my internship, it confused a few of the professionals how I had strengths on opposite paths and encouraged me to pick one and stick to it. I appreciated their guidance, but I honestly could not decide. Instead of compromising and picking one over the other, I am embracing them both and giving it up to God. Right now, God has assured me that “it all works together for his greater good.” In a nutshell, I am the type of person who can research and propose ideas to engage with people all while putting on the hat of leadership.

——————

How does this apply to you? Has God or something instinctively interrupting your own thoughts? Take the first step to walk out in faith and see how God will continue to move in your life.