10 Ways to Spark Creative Connections

I shared yesterday that my writing coach challenged me to use the intuitive side of my mind for my first approach to problem-solving during the month of March, and how doing so has been challenging, educational, and surprisingly beneficial.

h.koppdelaney-3 Photo Credit

One unexpected benefit came by what I like to call the “red car” effect—the tendency to notice red cars (or anything else) the second you start thinking about them. By keeping the idea of intuition/right brain thinking top of my mind for the past month, I began to notice it more often. By noticing when my intuition was engaged, I was better able to take advantage of the insights it offered.

I also started to notice some of the approaches that helped me to engage the more intuitive side of my mind when writing, and thought I’d share them with you. Hope these are helpful!

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Writing Power-Ups

super better Have you ever heard of SuperBetter?* Now in Beta testing, this website/game is designed to help people recover from just about everything. From their web site:

SuperBetter is powered by the science of positive emotion and social connection. Every mission in the game is directly inspired by leading-edge research in psychology, neuroscience and medicine — research that helps us understand how we can increase our ability to become stronger and more successful in the face of challenges and the pursuit of our goals.

Although this project was initially inspired by its creator’s struggles to overcome traumatic brain injury, beta testers are now using its principles to make changes such as:

  • Losing weight
  • Overcoming addictions
  • Conquering post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Improving health in the face of chronic illness
  • Recovering from an injury
  • Meeting fitness goals
  • Improving sleep patterns
  • Lowering stress

power-upsIt’s pretty cool!

One especially cool aspect of the game is the idea of “Power-Ups”. They’re the real-life version of those little glowing spheres a video character can collect in order to restore health or energy in a video game, activities or items that re-energize, inspire, soothe, or otherwise make your life better. These are different from rewards. They’re intended to improve your “positivity ratio”, because research shows that positivity has numerous benefits, including increased creativity and decreased anxiety.

What does this have to do with writing? 

What can I say? I have a one-track mind, and when I find nifty tools for self-improvement, I like to think about how it might be applied to my writing life. This idea of “power-ups” is a great addition to the writer’s toolbox. They can be used fuel creativity, counter negative self-talk, energize, inspire—basically, to inject some positive into the day-to-day of being a writer.

SuperBetter inspired me to make a list of writing power-ups to help me keep my balance as a writer—and to give me a jump-start when needed:

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How to Write When You Aren’t in the Mood

Neutral2_180_180_whiteIn honor of the first day of NaNoWriMo 2011 ***cheers*** (National Novel-Writing Month, for the uninitiated) I’m blogging about something I’m sure none of my lovely writing friends need help with…at least, not on fantabulous Day 1 of a month devoted to writing:

How to write when you are in the mood to curl up in the comfy chair with your favorite four-legged pal and veg out in the company of your favorite…

  • book
  • movie
  • handicraft
  • music
  • sugary treat
  • fill in the blank _____________

…and you absolutely, positively are NOT in the mood to write. Not even a grocery list, thank you very much. Not that I’ve ever been there. Much. 😀

Here’s my list of fave ways to kick the writing doldrums. Bookmark it, print it out, or write up your own and keep it handy and ready to smack down any anti-writing vibes that may creep up on you in the next month! Because remember, the best defense is a good offense!

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