Achieve More Focus, Clarity, and Creativity through Better Sleep –
Who am I to talk about sleep? Or creativity for that matter?
Well, I’m someone who sleeps well and has never had a problem sleeping! On second thought, scratch that, one time in college, I had a period of about three days where I couldn’t turn my mind off sleep. It was terrible to feel so tired and not able to sleep. If you struggle with insomnia this can be a serious condition that should be followed by a doctor.
How do you feel when you don’t get enough sleep?
Personally, I feel irritable, have less patience and am just not a very pleasant person to be around. Trust me, you don’t want to be around me. There is a lot of guidance out there about the “correct” amount of sleep we should be getting.
Other considerations may be whether or not you stay asleep and the amount of energy you have when you wake up. Most people walk around with much less energy than they actually need. They’re zombies and may not even know it. You should almost always feel energetic and rested in the morning. If not, you need to adjust something in your sleep hygiene.
I’m sure, you’ve heard about sleep hygiene: You “should” put away your phone, not have a TV in your bedroom, shut down your devices early and not be distracted before sleep, not go to the gym late at night, don’t eat close to bedtime, even how to set the temperature of the room. Well, a lot of us do not have control over some of these things. The kids are yelling, the phone helps us detach, you are going through hormonal changes and fluctuate in temperature throughout the night.
This article is not written with the intention of helping you to figure out what kind of adjustments you need to make to sleep better, although that is certainly a worthy exploration. This article’s intention is to REMIND you that you are inherently creative. You can and are meant to, be focused and clear on a regular basis and consistent, restful sleep is the way there.
Now I know many of you are saying “I’m not creative,” but yes my dear, you are.
We are, by nature, creative beings. We create life! We’re meant to be clear, creative, and focused. When was the last time you felt that way? Modern society has made us forget about this. You do have the time to be creative and I encourage you to explore what you create throughout the day AND encourage you to make time to be creative in a traditional way (draw, paint, dance, write). You don’t have to be Martha Stewart. Here are some ways to be creative that are nontraditional and will leave you saying “hmm! I am creative!”
First, stop saying you are not creative. Whether you tell yourself you’re something or you’re not, you start to believe it. I used to think I wasn’t creative because I couldn’t draw well, paint, or make pottery. When I started to think about, when I went to the toy store as a child I would always be in the crafts aisle. You’d find the childhood version of my husband in the LEGO aisle looking for stuff to build. Both are creative places. Today, we have enhanced our lives separately by trying and creating new things.
When we sleep, we are more ourselves. Our bodies and minds are able to work the way they should; efficiently. I notice when my mind is not clear of all the crap (yes, crap) that I need to take care of, that I’m worried about, that I’m revising the past, I am not creative, not focused, and certainly not clear. In these times, my creativity does not come through but that’s different than not being a creative person. Our bodies are amazing but when we’re stressed and lacking sleep all the nonessential functions shut down. Makes sense, right?
Here Are 5 Ways to Achieve More Focus, Clarity, and Creativity:
- Think about what you liked to do as a kid. Are you doing an adult version of it today? If not, start!
- A formal meditation practice could help you feel more creative, focused, and clear even if you are far from those things during meditation. My teacher, Ben Turshen, says “even with a shallow dive you still get wet.” Meaning, even if you don’t go deep into a blissful kind of meditative state, you still get the benefits of the meditative practice.
- Go out in nature. Nature is naturally creative. There’s SO MUCH to take in and we’re so much in our heads most of the time that we miss what’s actually around us. Check out what’s going on outside your bubble!
- Change your routine. If you walk to work on one side of the street change it up and walk a different way. I bet you’ll notice things you haven’t noticed before. It’s simply a different perspective.
- Try your hand at some Morning Pages. Julia Cameron wrote a book about free writing the moment she woke up every morning. Sounds like an interesting journey. Maybe you’ll be able to decode some dreams!
Whatever you decide to do, prioritize it and start on it today. Take action. It doesn’t matter how small the action; just take it. Little by little, a little becomes a lot.
I would love to hear what you’re doing to experience more focus, clarity, and creativity in your life. Please share your thoughts in the comments section below!
From my heart to yours as we move forward together.