16 Daily Practices to Improve Your Creativity

16 Daily Practices to Improve Your Creativity

8 min read

Whether you’re a full time artist or pursuing a creative hobby, we all have those days when we struggle to feel inspired and motivated.

“Creative block” sucks, but it’s something all artists face from time to time (even the best ones). If you’re going through it right now, don’t worry—it can’t last forever. And we’re here to help!

Harnessing creativity is a skill that can be learned, but it’s not just artists, designers,  musicians, and writers that can benefit from mastering it. Creativity is all about broadening your mind and finding new ways to solve problems. Boosting your creative skills can therefore improve your overall quality of life.

We all need a little guidance sometimes, so that’s why we created this list of daily practices that can help to get your creative juices flowing.

You don’t have to tick off every one of these ideas, but if you can manage to do a few each day, we promise you’ll start to feel more inspired, clear-minded, and confident over time.

Photo of paint splatters and silhouette of a woman
Image Source: Unsplash

Here are some small things you can do each day to nurture your creative mind.

1. Make Your Bed

It might sound silly, but the small act of making your bed sets the tone for the entire day.

With those beautiful sheets and pillows in order, you’ll have completed your first task and given yourself a sense of taking charge. And the daily habit will kickstart a chain of other small accomplishments throughout the day. What will you do next? Write a song? Create a mood board? There’s lots to do. But next—coffee!

2. Keep a Tidy Environment

tidy workspace with iMac
Image Source: Unsplash

This one is similar to our tip about making your bed every day.

Doing a little bit of cleaning up around your workspace before you being a project means you’ll approach tasks with a clear and happy mind.

3. Physical Exercise

You’re probably aware of the physical benefits of regular exercise, but working out can also have a positive impact on the mind.

Starting a daily exercising habit is proven to promote brain function and evoke a positive mood. Some research even shows that a long run or swim could help strengthen the same parts of the brain people use while being creative.

Exercising can help improve divergent and convergent thinking, which are considered the two components of creative thinking. Divergent thinking involves coming up with multiple solutions for one problem, while convergent thinking involves coming up with one solution to a problem.

Apparently, around 30 minutes of aerobic activity can improve creativity and the effects can last for up to two hours! So whether you’re into swimming, cycling, dancing, or walking, these activities are all worthy ways to spend your time—and they’re fun!

4. Meditate

In our busy lives, our minds are often stuck ruminating on our hectic schedules and to-do lists. However, this mindset leaves little room for creativity. The most creative thoughts usually happen during moments of stillness. That’s why we often have moments of clarity when we’re about to fall asleep or when we’re in the shower.

Meditation is a great way to create those moments of calm whenever you need them. A daily meditation practice helps to reduce stress, increase your self-awareness, and improve your focus. It even increases your imagination and helps creative ideas come to the forefront of your mind.

There are lots of different types of meditations and breathing exercises that are great for boosting creativity. However, for those of you who are just starting with their meditation journey, we recommend following a 20 minute guided meditation on an app like Headspace.

5. Daydream

During childhood, you might have been told off for daydreaming during class, but letting your mind wander is actually a good thing. We encourage it!

When you have a spare moment, it can be tempting to pick up your phone and start scrolling. However, use this time to embrace the boredom and give your mind some breathing room. Allow yourself to daydream.

This could be while you’re out for a walk, or while doodling in a sketchbook (more on this later). When you let your mind think freely without constraints, you’re allowing creativity to bloom. Don’t worry about organizing your thoughts just yet—just go with the flow.

6. Keep a Journal

person writing in journal
Image Source: Unsplash

Now, after you’ve let your mind wander, it’s time to record your fresh ideas.

Keeping a journal allows you to organize your thoughts and filter out the good ones from the bad ones.

Have you heard of a technique called Morning Pages? The method of writing Morning Pages comes from the book The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron. It involves taking 15-30 minutes each day to fill three pages of a notebook.

It doesn’t matter what you write—it’s supposed to be a stream of consciousness, so just jot down whatever pops into your head. Don’t let anybody else read it. It’s just for you!

The practice of writing down your thoughts is a way to declutter your mind, explore innovative ideas, and manifest your goals. It’s also believed to help with overcoming procrastination, negative emotions, and creative roadblocks. So, why not give it a try?

7. Sketch Just for Fun

Sketching on a daily basis helps to improve your motor skills and relax the mind.

Don’t put pressure on yourself to create a masterpiece. Just have fun with doodling without any expectations.

Sketching for 15 minutes before starting a project is a great way to warm up those design muscles. Plus, you’ll naturally get better at drawing over time, and you might even discover a cool artistic style you didn’t think you had.

8. Keep a Stone in Your Pocket

Bare with us on this one. It might seem odd, but keeping a stone in your pocket can help you to feel more grounded.

It doesn’t have to be a stone. You could keep an acorn or a shell in your pocket. The point is to be reminded of nature. This practice helps with mindfulness and awareness, both qualities that prevent creative block.

9. Practice Gratitude

a gratitude journal
Image Source: Unsplash

Even the fact that you’ve decided to read this blog means that you’re well on your way to improving yourself. Well done! You can be grateful for that.

Practicing gratitude is all about recording all the little things in your life that make you feel happy. Take time at the end of each day to write down the good things that happened to you. It could be something as small as having a delicious lunch or spotting a cute dog in the street.

We suggest downloading an app called Gratitude Journal Affirmations. It’s a prompted diary and vision board that encourages you to practice gratitude.

10. Bake and Cook

Eating well is obviously important for your health, but cooking your own meals is also a way to creatively express yourself.

Whether you learn a new recipe or make up your own, cooking up a storm in the kitchen is a fun way to stay mindful and strive to get better.

If you prefer sweet over savory, the same idea applies to baking. Cooking and baking gives you a chance to daydream and play. You will also achieve a sense of purpose and satisfaction, which allows creativity to sneak in. The best part? You get to eat what you make!

11. Don’t Compare Yourself to Others on Social Media

Social media is great for getting inspired and sharing your work, but endlessly scrolling through other people’s profiles can often cause negative thoughts about your own creations. Comparison is the greatest enemy of creativity, so try not to get too hung up on what other people are doing. Focus on your own ideas and progress.

Creative thinking comes in many forms, and everyone is at a different stage in their journeys to mastering their art. It’s okay to be a beginner, so why not follow other people that are just starting out, too? You can help to boost each other's confidence and give tips on how to improve.

If you’re feeling bad about your own art after spending too much time on social media, remember to take a break. You’ll feel much better about yourself later.

12. Fight the Fear

Failing is scary and mistakes feel icky.

But not starting a project because you’re scared it might not work out is paralyzing for your creativity. Remind yourself that mistakes are a part of the process. Even if you stumble, just get back up and try again. You got this!

13. Take the Time

a planner and Sharpie pen
Image Source: Unsplash

Everyday life is busy, and we often need to prioritize mundane responsibilities over creative tasks.

However, if you don’t plan your creative time, it might never happen. Schedule some time each every day to concentrate on your artistic endeavors. This could just be 30 minutes of sketching in the morning or an hour of writing in the evening. No matter your creative process, it deserves a dedicated moment.

14. Celebrate the Little Things

It’s important to build yourself up as a creative person.

Make notes of the progress you’ve made, and you’ll probably be pleasantly surprised at how far you’ve come when you look back on them later. Your daily efforts and achievements are worth commending, so find little ways to celebrate them.

You could do this by simply rewarding yourself with a bar of chocolate after a day's work, or buying yourself that new set of pencils you’ve been eyeing. You deserve it!

15. Learn a New Skill

You're never too old to learn something new.

Starting a new hobby or educating yourself on a subject is a great way to skill up, get inspired, and gain confidence. Remember: practice makes perfect, so don’t give up if you’re not good at something right away.

If you want to learn how to use Vectornator or improve your graphic skills, check out our Design Tips. We have tons of guides on how to be a great designer. And if you need some practice, why not try one or two of our drawing tutorials on the Blog?

16. Share Your Art With Friends and Other Creatives

Don’t be scared to put yourself out there. There are creative communities everywhere, in almost every artistic field you can think of. Share your work online, ask for feedback on creative ideas, and don’t forget to give some love back to others.

We like to think the Vectornator community is particularly supportive and kind. You can share what you make using our software via the Art Gallery in our Forum. No judgment here. All skill levels are welcome!

We hope these daily practices can help you to unlock your creative potential. Remember, everyone has their own creative abilities and strengths—all you have to do is nurture yourself so you can grow!

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