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Using Your Environment to Inspire You

Inspiration often originates from something around you - a picture, a person, a snippet of conversation. It’s no surprise, then, that your environment is a valuable resource whenever you’re seeking out new, creative ideas.

Take some time to set up your environment so that ideas frequently come to you, and you are ready to capture them and act on them. Check out a few ways to prime your creative space for creativity.

Your Workspace

Whether you do your best work from your home office, your art studio, or your cushy couch, you can arrange your surroundings to best suit your needs. Display photos, artwork, and collectibles that really get your juices flowing. Abstract art is great for this, as it may remind you of the shimmering ocean one day, and a shattered piece of glass the next. Whatever brings you joy and keeps you moving forward throughout the creative process is an excellent choice.

Also include ways to collect your ideas. I often have notebooks scattered throughout the house, just in case I think of some dialogue, a plot point, or a drawing I have to try. You may want to keep your camera near the door in case you decide to go on a walk and take photos. Or you may try having a blank canvas ready, so you can test out new paints, blending hues in unexpected ways.

Don’t worry about keeping your desk Pinterest-worthy though. While some people thrive in a clutter-free area with pastels and lots of white space, others prefer a bit of clutter and color to maintain easy access to their craft materials. As long as your space feels freeing instead of overwhelming, you will have less issues coming up with inspiration.

Your Outer Environment

Often, your first thought about your environment is your workspace - and that’s certainly important. However, everything around you is your outer environment, and can work in harmony to keep you inspired throughout your life. Playing music, lighting candles or incense, or having plenty of snacks can make your creative process go much more smoothly.

Don’t hesitate to switch things up from time to time either. Fresh flowers, seasonal decor, and random, geeky keepsakes are a welcome change that can spark new ideas.

Your Inner Environment

It can be difficult to receive inspiration if your inner world is in chaos. Take care of your own needs first, and clear some space in your mind to hear what your inner voice has to say. Meditation, instrumental music, and morning pages allow your brain to quiet down, so you can seek inspiration from within.

Before sitting down to a creative session, do a needs check-in. Have you drank enough water, had a snack, or gotten dressed today? Skipping over those needs can stall your work, so take the time now to ensure you are 100% ready to start your next project.

How do you use your environment to stay inspired? What works well for you when seeking and capturing ideas? Share your thoughts in the comments!

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