Creativity is an essential part of the human experience. This may look like artistic expression: visual art, poetry, dance, and more. But if that’s not you, don’t stop reading!

Accessing creativity is important for all of us in tasks as varied as cooking and gardening to brainstorming your next big career move. But it is hard to be creative when you’re stressed or frazzled. Sometimes, you need to let go of what’s overwhelming you and center yourself to find your creative groove.

When we are in this creative groove and actively engaging in a creative process, we are often in what positive psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi calls the “flow state.” This is a state in which we are entirely absorbed in a challenging but achievable task, a state where everything else fades away and the creativity just… flows. To put it plainly, this is when we are “in the zone.”

If you’re a creative, you likely already have techniques that help you find your own personal flow state. The tricky part is when things come up in life (as they do) that throw you off your game and get in the way of feeling ready to get into your flow state. If you’ve ever abandoned a fun project because you’re spinning your wheels over something at your 9-to-5 job, you know exactly what I’m talking about.

So how can you calm your mind and body or center yourself to access your flow state? Here is one simple movement activity that can help:

Press your hands together. Notice the sensation of your hands touching each other. What does it feel like? Take a mental inventory of this sensory experience.
Notice how slow the press can be, and use this to slow down your breathing.
Notice how direct the press can be, use this to direct your mind to only this moment, in the here and now.
Notice how you can use your strength to press your hands together and how this can increase your literal connection and contact with your own body.
You may wish to repeat the press with different body parts, such as pressing your hands to your thighs in a seated position or pressing your feet into the floor. Allow yourself to feel how this pressing can bring you back to center, giving yourself a moment of preparation before expanding into your creative pursuits. And then? Feel the flow!

This exercise is not the only way to center yourself and tap into your flow. Through individual therapy (URL at the bottom of page), you can learn more centering techniques. Then, through creative arts therapies like dance/movement therapy (URL at the bottom of page), you can explore your creative process and find your flow state. If you’re interested in learning more about how Sondra can help you center and flow, contact us (URL at the bottom of page)!


Individual therapy:

Dance/movement therapy:

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