Inspire Yourself First

I talk a lot about what inspires me on this blog; from my inspiration toolbox to my favourite blogs, I love surrounding myself with the awesome work and words other creatives are sharing. A huge thing I've learned about inspiration though is that first and foremost, you must inspire yourself. If you're always creating in response to someone else's work, you'll never tap into your true creative potential (I've spoke about taking inspiration too far before here). 

We are the sum of what inspires us and what we consume, there's no denying that, but that doesn't mean that we can't and shouldn't inspire ourselves first. But how do we do that? I'm sure it's different for everyone, but today I thought I'd share three ways I seek and find inspiration:

Always be listening Inspiration comes when we least expect it; when we're cooking dinner, when we're brushing our teeth, when we're taking a lazy sunday walk. Be fully engaged with your life and your creative process, always stay open to inspiration and new ideas and ways of seeing things. Keep a notebook on you at all time, or an app on your phone to jot down ideas; never stop searching for new ways to express yourself and your story with the world. 

Step away from your work I build in regular brainstorming sessions into my work week, but some of my best ideas come from when I step away from my work and just live. Get off the internet, talk to your favourite humans, or read your favourite book, and know that who you are as a creative is way more than just your work. It's in everything you do and if we spend too much time working we're limiting ourselves and our inspiration.  

Raise the bar The biggest way for my creativity to be stifled is to bore myself. If I'm not trying something new and pushing forward I'm easily uninterested in what I'm doing; I have this urge to always be raising the bar and to never stay stagnant with my work. I think a little fear and discomfort is a great way to inspire yourself; try something new, step out of your comfort zone, and face head on whatever it is that's holding you back. Don't just create what you've created in the past, keep developing and growing and heading in to your next adventure. 

How about you, how do you inspire yourself first?

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