3 Simple Ways to Fill the Well

April 7 by

3 Simple Ways to Fill the Well

As creatives, we often spend so much time in the creative process we burn out.  Sometimes we understand why, and sometimes we don’t.  But I think the number one reason is because we forget to fill the well.

We are a bunch of folks who have so much to say, so much to give, and so much to show, we are constantly fighting the battle of time verses the ability to produce.  We struggle through our day jobs, or our other responsibilities, and then meter out space for our creative outlets.  We doubt ourselves, we shelter our new born projects, or our old and most dear friends.  We spend time in our heads, or on the page, or the canvas, or the workshop.

We forget, sometimes, we are people with needs as well.
We forget that in order to continue to have output, we must also have input

And we forget that input can be quite easy to achieve.  We see it as just another interruption we don’t have time for.  Trust me – we have time for it.  Not only do we have time for it, I would assert it is imperative to our continued enjoyment of our chosen creativity.

So, with that in mind, here are three ways, three simple ways, to fill the well:

1. Read

It really doesn’t matter if your writer or a painter or a woodworker.  Read.  Read a book outside  your genre.  Read about other painters.  Read about woodworking techniques from outstanding workers.  Read whatever you like – but READ.  It does wonders for the brain.  Don’t believe me?  Here’s an article that outlines the great benefits of reading. 

2. Observe

In reality, you don’t have to go far to step back for a bit and just observe things.  You can walk around your own home, and truly SEE what’s in it.  Take a long look as though you are a stranger in your own home, and see how you organize your life.  You can go to a park, sit on a bench, and get the benefits of not only people watching, but nature as well, plants and animals.  Breathe deeply, take a few moments, and just look at everything around you.  See how the squirrel moves.  See the tree branches sway in the breeze or the ripples the wind makes on water.  Look at the artwork in the park. Notice people.  See their movements, their laughter, the affection, or the pensive faces.  And here’s an interesting little article on how observing helps us learn! 

3. Engage

DO something where you must participate.  Be it game night with the family, a movie or dinner with a friend, an interactive experience like a science museum, or an escape game, or take a class, or go to a hibachi grill and actually talk to your table mates.  Take you dog on a walk and play.  Become a part of what’s happening, and not only an observer.  Talk to people.  Bring your sense of curiosity, and ask questions of them.  Whatever you do, bring your whole self to it.  Truly engage your senses, and most importantly, your brain.  And just for good measure here’s an article about how engagement helps us. 

It really is easy to get stuck in a rut, especially if we’re introverts.  But it really is important to us creatively to fill the well: To fill it with life, with experience, with knowledge.

So, tell us.  How do YOU fill the well?

Cathy Lynn

About Cathy Lynn

Cathy Lynn is an artist, writer, executive trainer, and the co-owner of Inkwell Basics. She has published two coloring books, Conscious Coloring and Carnal Coloring. She's currently working on a novel, and turning her farm into an event venue. She previously blogged at 3 Shared Paths, a personal growth blog that was read worldwide, and has been blogging for over 10 years. She lives somewhere between the city and the country with her three cats, Sebastian, Miss Kitty, and Ella.

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