18 June 2012

Coffee and Creativity: Finding the "Write" Balance

Whoever blesses his neighbor with a loud voice,
rising early in the morning, will be counted as cursing.
~ Proverbs 27:14

ome people wake up in the morning and say, “Good morning, God!”  You know them ~ insufferably cheerful Pollyannas who don’t need a drop of caffeine or a cold shower to shake off the film of sleep.

The rest of us struggle to rise, and if we say anything beyond a grunt, it would translate as “Good God, it’s morning!”  For a long time I thought I was a spiritual slacker for greeting a brand new day with such a nasty and ungrateful attitude.  However, this little bit of wisdom from Proverbs above rights my world again.

Take that, Mister/Miss Perky! Nyah!
So imagine my chagrin when I read Laura Vanderkam’s article on Fast Company this morning.
Mornings are a great time for getting things done….Your supply of willpower is fresh after a good night’s sleep.
You have got to be kidding me.

My alarm went off at 4:45 this morning.  Do you know how much willpower I had after about six hours of sleep?  Just enough to glare at the phone, slide the snooze button, and roll over.

Thunderous applause.

And you want me to get things done?

All right, all right.  So I have tried this before.  As you can see, it didn’t last long.  One part ADD, one part sheer stubbornness, one part love of sleep.  One would think I could harness that stubborn energy and apply it to my creativity. 

Then number two on Laura’s list of before-breakfast routines sparked my interest: envision a perfect morning?  Readers that have been with me for awhile know a little of what that would look like.  To write undisturbed for one to two hours. To churn out pages and pages of writerly brilliance.  Savoring a pot of tea and a plate of buttered toast.  But in the world I live in right now, that type of bliss would entail getting up earlier than the 4:45 alarm. 

And by definition that would not be blissful.

However, I certainly need something to help me become more productive.  And by productive, I mean actively creative.  I can dream it, write it, play it, sing it, craft it.  But life ~ or at least the disorganization that is part of my persona ~ seems to shove all those great ideas to the back while I put out yet another fire.

This is no way for a serious creative to live!

Something must be done.  I am convinced there is a palatable compromise hidden in Laura’s advice.  I just need to find it and try it out for a couple of weeks.

Right after I take a nap.

Oremus pro invicem,
~ Mikaela

Do you follow a set routine?  Do you find that it helps you accomplish your goals while reaming open to the creative spark? Or did you find your creativity stifled?
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