Cyberspaces and “Sloppy” Blogging

Blogging isn’t a new thing, but it certainly has evolved over time. Sites like Blogger and WordPress stand in the same field as microblogging platforms like Twitter and Tumblr. Blogs are basically web diaries or journals, documenting individual experiences, or listing pieces of advice – among other things, of course – and the fast march of the Internet has made sharing blog entries, and blogging, in general, better. In the sense that blogs right now are more accessible, especially since there are blogs that cater to specific audiences.

Today’s culture, however, thrives in slices and quick servings. Twitter is so popular because of its quick, snappy nature as a “micro-blog.” A tweet is so fast to tweet, it’s like a slap in the face – a hundred and forty characters maximum, in a single heartbeat. Servings are minute, and in a world where everything is fast, Twitter as a platform provides easy-to-digest “blog entries.” Tumblr, meanwhile, is not strictly a microblogging platform, but it fuses the speedy nature of Twitter with the heftier weight of sites like WordPress. A standard Tumblr dashboard satisfies visual cravings, and reblogs make blogging extremely easy when for the standard user.

Ease of use is a thing, of course, and technology relies on this idea in order to improve people’s lifestyles. But while platforms like Twitter and Tumblr are now wired into the daily lives of people – and therefore, are essential – it’s hard not to think of them as social network fast food: quick, satisfying in a heartbeat, but filled with empty calories.

Someone said that “brevity is the soul of wit,” but it’s a cop-out excuse. Twitter documents the daily lives of people to the point that trivial minutiae find themselves in the feed. Blogging eventually loses its meaning as a writing exercise, and this comes right around the nth reblog of a photoset of memes, or the thousandth tweet about how boring your day is.

Which takes me to this point: blogging is a writing exercise that helps in the creative process. Gets the creative juices running, so to speak. It’s a form of prose writing, a form of creative non-fiction writing, and doling out single lines or a hundred and forty characters – no matter how wonderfully challenging establishing witty remarks with such limited resource is – writing longer pieces is still very much helpful, very much useful. To ignore the value of a good blog entry is to deny the creative force that goes on behind it. Sloppy blogging is blogging without any real substance behind it – just a set of words that might mean something, that might hit something that happened in your day, but ultimately it’s a mess. A mess, sure, is not completely bad, but enough “fast food” blogging eventually reduces one’s attention on detail, among other things, that – possibly – your creativity will be reduced to reblogs and retweets, and measured by follows and a number of likes.

So, maybe, keep a blog and work on it. It need not be an every day thing, not necessarily something that people could read. But in a world where the Internet dominates the landscape, it’s important to be able to get good, substantial creative output in different media. Even if the blog entry is about raw chicken. At least put your writing skills to the test and see if you can make a story out of that.

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4 Things Your Critics Really Want From You

Just as there are certain things that motivate an artist, there are also deeper reasons behind every detractor’s display of distaste. Although some of them would claim that they are simply giving an opinion, the truth is they want to provoke you into doing something that will crush your creative drive. It’s very important for you to be aware of their intentions so that you will know how to handle them. If you’re a keen observer, you have probably noticed some of these hidden motives already.


Here are four of the most common things that your critics are just dying to see. While going through them one by one, let’s go fast forward to a scenario where you allowed them to break your streak of creative victories. The future looks dark, I tell you.


You make a fool of yourself.

Before you started paying attention to what your critics say about your work, you are able to produce masterpiece after masterpiece. You used to not even have to ask for second opinions because you do your craft for your own pleasure, as a healthy expression, or you’re simply exhibiting your talents to make your loved ones proud. When you allowed the negative comments to scare you, your lack of confidence became very evident in your work. In fact, its quality has gone from great down to ordinary, then boring and eventually ridiculous. It’s not that nobody can appreciate the outlandish, but the point is it isn’t much of an art anymore because it’s a product of second guessing.


You get more haters.

They might as well have set up a Facebook community page for this, because chances are, they’re going to get a lot of ‘Likes’. That’s always been one of their main goals, to rally fellow detractors so as to sound more truthful in their negative claims, believing there is power in numbers. And once you let your critics get the better of you, you experience a chain of failures. You constantly fail, because even though what they’re saying about your work is not entirely true, you grow more cautious and not take giant leaps of faith with your creations anymore. We already know what playing safe is a crime against.


You hate your own.

It’s frustrating. It’s depressing. And who wouldn’t learn to despise one’s own work if you just kept messing up? Admittedly, I would. Some artists express revulsion through art. There are those who are able to make remarkable pieces, even though those pieces were made out of hate. However, this kind of hatred that you develop is not healthy because it is directed towards your art. You’re basically not creating from hate, but instead, hating what you create.


You throw in the towel.

Take it as it is. You just go ‘That’s all folks!’ and quit on your craft. The critics have won. They’re able to put your career in creativity to a sad end. It’s like forcing a boxer to stop boxing without even crippling him. You can’t really lose your talent, you will always have it. But when you quit, you lose everything, even yourself.


Snap back to reality. Good thing we were only visiting an imaginary setup. Although, they are likely to happen as a consequence of allowing the damaging statements made by critics to weaken your will to create. Remember, a good defense is a great offense.  Not paying attention at all is the best way to fight back.


Some people insist that ‘mediocre’ is better than ‘best.’ They delight in clipping wings because they themselves can’t fly. They despise brains because they have none.” – Robert A. Heinlein

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Dear Diary: The Importance of Keeping Journals

Every now and then, the posts in this blog would mention things one could do in order to improve one’s creativity or else force one to write, and keeping a pen and some pieces of paper on you at all times is one of those things. However, as with many things in life, just having something to write with won’t ensure that you’re going to get something. Instead, you should actually write something, anything, in order to produce results. But that’s putting it simply. Keeping journals are important because they’re there to help you pin down any ideas that might come in at random wherever you are, but that’s just the first thing.

Journals can help with other things, besides pinning down thoughts and ideas. Keep a journal, or a few loose pages (which you will have to keep later on, anyway), and sit down somewhere in public. Sit down, watch the people, and write them down. Describe what they’re doing, maybe what they’re thinking, or what’s happening to them, in contrast to everything else that’s happening around them. Take notice of the subtle shifts in the environment, and who comes in at what time. Speculate why.

Keep a recording device and walk around. Articulate your thoughts verbally without reprieve, or without holding back, as you walk. Look at everything around you, and talk about what’s happening around you, and intersperse these with the thoughts that are going on in your head. A veritable stream-of-consciousness exercise, if you will, taking down whatever pops inside your head with the voice recorder, because the speed of your hand writing down things, scribbling down things, won’t cut it.

Keep that journal, and doodle. Draw the worlds that you’re conceptualizing, draw the characters that you’re developing. Create an account of your brainstorming session, write down plot points and development trees, connect everything with a thousand arrows that don’t make sense at first glance. Keep that journal, and list down the books that you might want to read, and the books that you don’t want to read, and list down why.

The purpose of keeping a journal is simple, but the effects that it might have – and especially when you’re religiously putting something in that file – will be profound. Writing about people around you, and writing about what pops inside your head, are just two of the things that may change the game in terms of your creativity. People say “write what you know,” but knowing entails experiencing, and experience happens quickly, sometimes in the blink of an eye something happens that might just trigger something positive in you. For moments like that, while they do embed themselves in your consciousness anyway, especially when it’s a unique moment, it’s helpful to have something to help you attempt to capture the specific feeling and value of that moment right after it happens. One can certainly do a lot of things with the journal. One can certainly write about a lot of things. But keeping a journal develops discipline in two areas: the discipline of writing, and the discipline of comprehending. Because, of course, you can’t really write something and not come back to it later. Making sense of your own spur-of-the-moment scribbles and diagrams is part of the creative process that comes with keeping a journal (of any type, which I’ve neglected to explicitly mention).

So ignore anyone who looks down on journals. “Dear diary” is a great place to start, and if done regularly – even spontaneously – it will naturally and eventually lead you to places.

Something else:

You might also want to look at what Sasa said about writing, because it has the same thought as this post. We’re basically encouraging people to just keep on writing, so there.

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Creative Workspace: One Size Does Not Fit All, But…

Your office or studio is where you do the brainstorming for your current project or the next one. But, it doesn’t mean you have to stay in there each time you have to work. Having a career in creativity gives you that advantage. Unlike other types of careers, you don’t have to be confined in an area to be productive (or forced to be). You have the whole world as your workspace. Plus, you don’t have to worry about punch in/out clocks. You hit the time when ideas hit you, and there’s absolutely no limit to how long you can keep working, allowing you to strike while the iron is hot.


Unfortunately, even when we want to go elsewhere to work on something, the atmosphere does not always agree with our plans. When you have to stay indoors because weather conditions are not auspicious for some creating and innovating, there are ways to counter the unproductivity. Visit and make use of the different quarters in your abode. Below, I have some suggestions for you.


For when it’s too cold outside:


  • Drink hot chocolate and have your laptop or sketch pad with you, or whatever it is that you need for making drafts. Don’t underestimate what the comfort that a warm cup of anything can do.
  • Listen to the classics. They’re proven to help ease the mind and improve the activity of brain cells, so you stay alert mentally even when the weather is seducing you to take a nap.
  • Stay in the guest room. If you don’t have one, pick any room that you normally wouldn’t hang out in. You can even sit by the staircase or squat on the floor along the hallway. The point in this is to let you learn how you can find comfort in the most unexpected places, to appreciate the relief in spots that you would normally just pass by. Do the imagining there and write your thoughts on a notebook. Trust me, you will be able to use that.
  • Read or watch some drama, suspense or action-packed novels and films, even if you’re not a fan. Why these genres? As I’ve mentioned earlier, the cold can tempt you to be lazy. These types of entertainment are firmly engaging because you need to fully focus on them to understand the story throughout the end. Then after, you can use them as inspiration for your work.


For when it’s too hot outside:


  • Eat some ice cream (or any frozen treat), still with your creativity tools handy. To help beat the heat while you’re working on a project, incorporate the cool delight you get from what you’re eating into your work. I’ve tried this last summer. In spite of the great discomfort that the humid weather is giving me, I felt like frost fairy. You’ll get highly imaginative. Believe it.
  • Listen to modern songs. Unlike the classics, they will allow your brain to be just a bit passive, but not to the point of drowsiness. You can create a personal playlist of feel-good tunes to keep the vibe seemingly breezy, making it extra fun for you to work. However, if you’re not used to noise when working, you can always just opt for silence or listen to the mere sound of nature.
  • There’s neither storm nor snow, but the sun is too harsh. Sit on the porch or out in the backyard, under a shade of a tree. In the absence of any of these, any outer extension of the house will do. If you have air-conditioning, that works too. But I wouldn’t recommend it for when you’re working, especially when inside your room where it’s likely for you to fall asleep.
  • Read a humorous book. It’s too hot already, you don’t need something that requires you to be over-receptive. Laughter is a remedy for many things, it can also aid creativity relapses. No television this time. It only worsens the present uneasiness brought about by the abnormally warm weather. Also, an informative manuscript is a good alternative.


One place can’t really hold all the functions you need for an ideal workspace, but if you use your creativity when the situation calls for it, you will be able to deal with what’s available and continue to be productive. It’s part of your being creative to keep doing what you do, no matter what.


Aerodynamically, the bumble bee shouldn’t be able to fly, but the bumble bee doesn’t know it so it goes on flying anyway.” – Mary Kay Ash

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Tap Into your Subconscious for Better Ideas

When you have to come up with an idea, you look around to see if something or someone inside the room can pitch it to you. The tendency to be passive when confronted with a problem is a major hindrance to our being natural problem-solvers. As rational beings, we always seek for a solution, even when there is no problem to begin with. We just love to assume that there is always a catch. Perhaps it can be a good thing. I mean, nobody prefers being sorry when being safe is within capacity upon the start. But, is danger really present? In the scope of creativity, I think not.


Playing safe is a crime against creativity. The bigger the risks, the crazier the ideas, the more promising the outcome will be. The best source of these extraordinary concepts are buried deeply in our subconscious. Why? It’s because inside our semi-active thoughts, some realities are exaggerated. I know I’ve stressed in previous posts that too much of anything can’t be good( probably more times than I can recall), but in this sense, I’ll point out when exaggeration can work. Upon the inception of ideas, they are basically in a safe mode. Meaning to say, as long as they remain inside your head, there will never be such a thing as too much.


Your brain is made to hold unlimited information, pointless and useful alike. You feed it with new ones all the time, as a result of the different senses functioning. Once absorbed, they are stored in your memory. However, we can’t possibly remember everything. Have you ever noticed that when you don’t need to remember something, it comes so easily as though you would normally bring that thing up? But when you actually need to bring it up, you just don’t know where the heck it went. Take for instance when you’re taking an exam and you studied your ass off, but when the questions are right in front of you, you go blank. Artists get this all the time. Even though there is no pressure to get good grades, as some students feel during a test (or most of them at least), they aim to create something worthwhile for their talents’ sake.


Memories that can be used as raw material for something creative are often the hardest to recall. If you are frustrated enough about it, there is actually a way to access them. This process is called hypnotherapy. Hypnosis has long been used to treat people who have problems concerning the subconscious. Is it truly effective in improving recollection? I wouldn’t know personally because I haven’t tried going to a hypnotherapist, but according to my research, it’s confirmed – hypnosis can improve memory recall. I’d like to note that it doesn’t work as a truth serum, nor is it a reliable means of accessing buried memories, but it does evoke mental photographs which can trigger interesting ideas.


It is really not essential  to see an expert in order to tap into your subconscious. You just simply forget the need to remember, or the need to solve something, and relax. Relaxation is key when you are trying to get into a more creative vibe. Get enough of it and you will be surprised to see that it becomes easier for you to pull your useful memories to the surface.


The mind does most of its best thinking when we aren’t there. The answers are there in the morning.” – Alain de Botton

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The Creative Process, and Why You Should Go On (Even If You Feel Bad)

There’s a numbered list that outlines the creative process going online, and it goes like this (edited slightly to remove profanity):

  1. This is awesome.
  2. This is tricky.
  3. This is bad.
  4. I’m bad.
  5. This might be okay.
  6. This is awesome.

The list is short, sweet, and very accurate. In broad strokes, it describes how the creative process brings the artist from one high end to the next, but giving the artist a seemingly insurmountable slump of dullness and disappointment halfway through. It’s like a fence or a mountain, getting higher and higher and harder to overcome, and eventually the artist – regardless of the discipline – opts to give up and start over.

A professor in my English department shared this list to my class the other day, as an introduction to how difficult it is to write. She is a writer, by the way, and lives her life every day dealing with the vicious cycle that is the creative process.

I’m bringing this up right now because based on experience, and from friends’ experiences, the individual tends to run smoothly through the process until they hit the slump. They reach the fourth stage and never come out alive, likely leaving the work unfinished and the artist inside unsatisfied. Of course this happens a lot, but creating is an uphill battle, a process that’s never easy. One does not cruise through writing with hair down and the sun shining brightly. A lot of challenges face the artist, but the artist’s biggest challenge is the self. Self-doubt and discouraged feelings come in at the fourth stage of the creative process, and this brings the artist down enough to put a stop to everything.

But, as with all difficult things, if you think you’re stuck in the fourth stage, don’t let it defeat you. It’s your own voice that’s telling you to give up, because at that stage of the process it seems as if your work cannot be saved. Don’t believe the nagging feeling inside, and push through the darkness. It will help if you’re constantly reminding yourself that you’re determined to finish the work, and that you wouldn’t want anything to go to waste. After all, far into the creative process, you’ve invested a lot of time and effort, and it’d be a waste not to see it through.

Granted, there are projects that aren’t satisfying when you go through them. However, it’s a thing I’d recommend. If you’re stuck in the slump, read through or look at what you’ve done so far. If you see progress, then that’s fine, that’s wonderful, go on ahead and defeat that thing telling you that you can’t do it. If you think it doesn’t possess any value whatsoever, take it to someone else so they can evaluate it. If they tell you it’s good, then pick it up again. Continue writing that story. Continue working.

Once you overcome that fence, you might start feeling okay about what you’ve done, and it’ll go back to the final stage. The thing is, though, the creative process is basically like this. If you let it defeat you halfway through, there will never be any output that you can be proud of. Everything will be half-finished, half-realized, and dumped in the “what-if” folder. So do your best to overcome the fourth stage – the lowest point – of the process, and everything will turn out fine.

Read next: when should you give up your creative dream?

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Meaningless Creativity: Absurd but Sold Out

Many artists blame unproductivity on the lack of inspiration. Some admit they constantly procrastinate. But none of these reasons are as serious as the notorious agent of delay in creativity which is the fear of criticism. People who suffer from this whenever they need to make decisions or take action, especially when pressured to do it on the spot, are said to have an Avoidant Personality Disorder or AvPD. It is a Cluster C personality disorder according to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. Simply put, a person diagnosed with AvPD is extremely anxious. But don’t underestimate it or brush it off just yet. Over-anxiety may seem like an average feeling of an average person, but it falls under the same cluster as being obsessive-compulsive and being over-dependent. That can’t be good.


You don’t have to worry too much about the outcome of your work. Too much worrying can hurt your creativity. Big time. This is the part where I stress the importance of studying and researching about other art forms and genres. The more you know about the mechanics of your craft, and what other artists have a mutual respect for in their fellow creatives, the easier it will be for you to break free from the grips of social conformity.


Existentialists are the freest of the free, that is, among artists who create by philosophy. At least in my opinion, they are. The existentialism credo implies that a person’s actuality is enough reason, and requires no meaning, explanation, nor direction. Without logic or the need of it, creation can happen. Sounds a little bit absurd but it is possible, moreover, it is marketable. In literature, there is a genre called absurdist fiction. Literary compositions under this genre often have characters who are devoid of purpose in life. But even with the absence of values or lessons, they are well received by many readers. Regardless of how much of it is true or how much of it is made up, people are entertained by these books because they want to be able to escape from the complexities of reality. Yes, we want to be challenged mentally, but we also need a breather from having to do only those things that are reasonable. Over-thinking can be stressful, and being stressed is the last thing you want to be if you’re already worried about being unproductive. So you see, absurdity can be therapeutic, that’s why it sells.


Come to think of it, inspiration isn’t really much of a necessity if you aim to not let the day go by without creating something. As an artist, you should make it a habit to keep doing what it is that you do, just for the sake of it. In a way, you are cultivating your talent. Like a pencil, you must keep it sharpened even when you do not have to use it immediately. But unlike a pencil, creativity does not get shorter if you keep sharpening it. It grows. So don’t do it for the critics. Don’t even do it for yourself. Just do it.


We can regard our life as a uselessly disturbing episode in the blissful repose of nothingness.” – Arthur Schopenhauer

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Solo Flights: Why It’s Healthy to Be Alone (Sometimes)

People say a lot of things about being with other people. “No man is an island.” “Humans are social animals.” “There’s no ‘I’ in ‘team’.” The world constantly stresses the importance of companionship and being with others. There’s stigma attached to being the lone wolf. One must be part of something in order to be legitimately connected to the world.

Of course, this is not an attempt to deny the importance of being connected with others, as there is a psychological need to feel connected. People are, to a certain extent, social animals, and one’s memories aren’t always made alone. But sometimes – maybe even a lot of times – being alone is better than being with others. It’s a necessity. It’s healthy. Especially if it involves the creative process.

There are several reasons why being alone helps when one is brainstorming, or trying to figure something out. I’ll form a parallel – most people can’t study effectively when it’s really hot, or when there’s a lot of noise in the background. External forces can be intrusive, sometimes dangerously so, and these can break concentration and studied thought. You’re on the cusp of processing something, understanding something – and then an annoyingly catchy commercial theme blasts in the background.

People can be disturbing forces, sometimes more so than any inanimate object. You’re in the middle of thinking of a plot twist, and you’re getting there – so, so close – and then suddenly someone asks you something so trivial. It’s frustrating, especially in the attempt of trying to recover a good thought.

Alone, with your own thoughts, the thought process can get wild and free. There are no restrictions, no influences that impose themselves on the thought process. One is open to think about ideas more than if there are people who constantly interrupt and disturb. It’s already hard enough to try to think about ideas and to make them coherent. It’s worse if people are there trying to steal your attention.

Apart from that, it is easier to organize thoughts when you are alone. Like I said, your attention is all on what you are thinking about, what you are working on, or what you are planning to work on. There’s no need to be influenced by unwanted influences, and it’s certainly less frustrating to be able to piece together a puzzle when it’s done alone.

The thoughts are, anyway, louder and more powerful when one is alone.

It’s useful to try to find a single place to meditate in, somewhere relatively isolated and quiet. A private space, preferably. Or, even just a private bubble in a public space. Being alone means shutting yourself off from the world – not completely, of course, but enough for you to feel a satisfying degree of solitude – and it can be achieved through several ways: jogging, sitting in your own little corner in a coffee shop, going to a garden or a park and observing everyone else, or just sitting in a quiet corridor in the school building.

Being alone, too, takes off the pressure in everything. While people say that things shine under pressure, it’s not fun to be pushed over and over again, especially where the creative process is concerned. Solitude is important, and let no one else tell you otherwise.

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Plan Your Life Creatively

No one is born boring. A blank canvas, that’s what we are when we first came into this world. The first group of people we encounter are responsible for drafting out what kind of life we would be living, and slowly shape what kind of individuals will become of us.


How creative you are is not limited to the in-your-face artistic pieces that you are capable of making. It’s also not exclusive to the appreciation and collection of pieces of art which aren’t your own creations. There is no single defining thing that determines a person’s creativity, not even through the comparison of oneself with peers based on specific criteria. Especially not that. Life is what you make of it. You’ve probably heard this from people a couple of times. You’ve probably uttered the words yourself. By simply choosing to make a plan of how your life is going to happen, you can have the power to live a very colorful one.


Make bold decisions. Don’t just stand in the corner and watch everyone else settle for a black and white world. Be open to the idea that you may be that catalyst that can lead a whole generation of creativities.  If you think you can do something about the lack of color in your life, do something about it and do it in a way that inspires others to do the same when they see it, or motivate them to create something good in a different way.


Some people are discontented about the way their lives are turning out.  Many wish that they could turn back time. You don’t have to instantly conclude that you are facing a crisis. A creative mind would look for ways to salvage what is, rather than regret and wish for a second chance at what was. Second chances seldom come. You add going back in time to the table, and seldom becomes never. You might as well do with what’s left of your unwise decisions.


If you want a meaningful life, there’s only one way to do it. Plan. And do not just plan for the things to come, be a creative planner. Envision something beyond the possible. The idea is to set out specific goals, map out specific steps to be taken in order to reach those goals, put in a little time pressure to hopefully fight procrastination, and have a backup plan for when those steps turn out to be flawed.


Let me give you a clear example of what kind of plan you should be making. A checklist is easier to go by, and also leaves room for you to make changes along the way if you feel the need for any. Below is a list of things that I personally think are creative ways to intend for the outcome of life. Give it a playful title to make sure you always find it enjoyable to review.



  • Examine myself. What are my wants and needs?
  • Explore talents and skills. Hone them.
  • Execute what I’ve always intended to do with my gifts.
  • Extract people from my life who hinder my success.
  • Expect the unexpected. If at one area I’m not showing much progress, develop a new skill.
  • Extend. Find people who will most likely appreciate and help put my talents to good use.
  • Exit with grace. Leave them in awe when I leave the scene.


Life truly is what you make of it. It is the sum of the concurrence of your failed and successful creations alike.


Without leaps of imagination or dreaming, we lose the excitement of possibilities. Dreaming, after all is a form of planning.” – Gloria Steinem

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Insomnia: Friend or Foe?

A lot of studies have been made to find out the relationship between sleep and creativity. It’s long been proven that getting enough rest and sleep refreshes our whole body, and the lack of it impairs cognition, attention, and decision-making. To be able to get the best out of your creativity, you need to have a clear head as well as a healthy body. But in the case of a sleeping disorder, where you have no control over it, is it possible to turn the odds in your favor by taking advantage of the extra waking hours?


What is a clear case of insomnia?


Many people mistake insomnia for a single incident thing. They experience one night of not being able to doze off and they think they have a disorder. Even acute cases have to at least have happened a couple of times in wide frequencies.

Sure signs of insomnia include:

  • difficulty in falling asleep
  • waking up in the middle of the night and not being able to get back to sleep
  • waking up too early in the morning
  • feeling tired upon waking

One has to go through repeated occurrences of these symptoms in order to say he or she is an insomniac. Although a less frequent type can develop into a more serious one, a chronic case, it can still be corrected with the help of professionals and with the right kind of therapy.


In ‘The Guardian’, a blog by Dorian Lynskey, he wrote an article about the upside of insomnia.  He was taking into account a creative journey of a musician and actor who suffered sleeping problems. It had started from the actor’s too much worrying about getting enough rest. Because of it, he watched film after film to hopefully get tired but instead, ended up staying awake until it was past 3:00a.m. It was becoming habitual and because of his frustration, he decided that instead of trying to get asleep by tiring himself with things unrelated to his plans, he would take the time to create music.


Creative Insomnia


It’s existence has been disputed many times, but have been found true with subjective proof through examples like Chris Martin of Coldplay and techno artist Moby, who testify that they are able to find inspiration from sleepless nights just as well as torment.


Don’t feel so safe just yet. We’ve only covered half of the issue. Let’s get into the adverse effects of insomnia on creativity. Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic, a Professor of Business Psychology at UCL and NYU, says that one does not have to suffer from insomnia  to in order to be a high-flyer in any field. He claims evidence suggesting that sleep deprivation has a negative impact on all sorts of performance. Read his entire post on Psychology Today to have a more profound view from an expert.


Creative Sleep


An equally interesting and slightly related topic from another source confers that there is a kind of sleep that an artist can possibly self-induce in order to awaken his or her creativity. I know, it sounds paradoxical at first. You are about to find out why. Maria Popova writes about the Art of Creative Sleep, highlighting the interesting points in ‘On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft’ by Stephen King. She opens the article by quoting Debbie Millman’s first step among 10 Easy Steps in Overcoming Creative Block.


Sleep is the greatest creative aphrodisiac.


You now understand that sleep here is taken as more than one kind; first, sleep as in resting to recharge the brain, and then sleep as in a state of mind where dreams are lucid. Stephen King focuses on the latter. He says that it can be achieved by blocking out all the things that can prevent you from connecting with your dreamer self. He reassures that in the long run you will be able to filter out the distractions but if you are only at the beginning of the craft, it’s best to try to deal with these distractions. The ideal setting has to provide you the kind of space and stillness that sleeping does.


The Judgement


Insomnia is neither friend nor foe. I think what matters is our attitude towards sleep. We shouldn’t treat sleep as a mere process of reinvigoration. If we are too worried about how much of it we get, we tend to have a negative attitude towards working. Insomnia does not directly affect creativity because some people are still able to produce quality art pieces in spite of being deprived of sleep. The precise downside of sleep deprivation is that it affects our health, subsequently incapacitating us of many things including doing something creative. It’s best to let sleep happen naturally and practice healthy living while awake, so that our body tires out naturally. Sleep shouldn’t be forced, just like creativity.


Sleep comes more easily than it returns.” – Victor Hugo

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