Five Ideas for Channeling Your Muse

Ervin SinclairCreativityLeave a Comment

In Greek mythology, the Muses were goddesses of inspiration and enlightenment who imparted knowledge and insight onto early poets, writers, musicians, artists, sculptors, scientists, and everyone else involved in the creative process.

Muses were the source of knowledge: without them, creators fell short of their potential; with them, masterpieces were born.

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Stop Doing Your Best Work

Ervin SinclairCreativity, ProductivityLeave a Comment

Do your best work.

You’ve heard this statement your whole life. It’s a phrase that is loved by school teachers, employers, friends, and self-help gurus. Presumably, this “call to action” is meant to motivate, to encourage you to push yourself to be better.

But I believe a misunderstanding of this statement has mislead many people and has had disastrous effects on countless creative projects.

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How 20 Minutes a Month Can Save Your Struggling Creative Project

Ervin SinclairCreativity, ProductivityLeave a Comment

FREE Monthly Review Worksheet
This article comes with a FREE Monthly Review Worksheet, which guides you through the step-by-step review process discussed in this article. Download it here

The time comes in every creative project when you sit back, look at your work, and ask yourself, “why?

Why am I doing this?”
Why isn’t this working?”
Why did I think this would matter?”

It’s tempting, at this point, to think, “Is this idea worth the effort, or should I move on to something else?”

But that’s the wrong question to ask. Because the problem might not be with your project at all—it might be with your process.

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Hardcore History’s Dan Carlin Explains His Creative Process

Ervin SinclairCreativityLeave a Comment

If you’ve never listened to Dan Carlin’s Hardcore History, you’re missing out on an entertaining and enlightening presentation of some of history’s most important events. Carlin’s unique style makes his storytelling engaging and seemingly effortless.

In a recent episode (episodes range from 90 minutes to over 4 hours), Carlin added a postscript where he lamented over his dissatisfaction with the way the episode turned out. It was yet another reminder that creativity is hard work, and that what seems effortless often isn’t.

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Creativity, the Beast, and Community Theater

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I recently returned home from the opening night of a children’s production of Beauty & the Beast at the local community theater. As you might expect from a play where most of the cast were under 12 years old, there was plenty of room for improvement.

The show was spattered with forgotten lines, missed cues, technical difficulties, and frequent moments of awkwardness.

But do you know what happened? After every musical number? After every scene change?

Every time the lights went dark and the audience applauded, my six-year-old wheeled around and, grinning wildly, exclaimed, “this is really great! I like this better than the movie!”

What was it about the play that, despite its obvious shortcomings, made it an overall success? And how does that apply to your own creative pursuits?

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Master Any Book With 4 Sticky Notes

Ervin SinclairProductivityLeave a Comment

Quick. What was the last book you read?

What was the title? Do you remember the main theme? Could you give a 30-second synopsis to a friend?

If you can’t answer each of these questions, chances are you weren’t getting the most out of what you read. And life is too short to read something without reaping the benefits.

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3 Tools to Generate Ideas & Jumpstart Your Creative Sessions

Ervin SinclairCreativityLeave a Comment

If you’re like most people, you don’t have the luxury of working on your creative project all day, every day. You have dozens of demands that take you away from your creative goals: things like work, kids, social engagements, or household chores.

While a little time away from your project isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it can make it difficult to get back into the creative groove.

These three strategies are sure to help you get past the creative doldrums.

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