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The Importance of Percolation

Aug 17, 2007
Percolating over a creative process is not procrastination, though it may look like it from the outside. Percolating over a chosen creative project, happens at any point along the creativity continuum, from choosing an idea, developing plans, creating the product to displaying the project.

Sometimes you will need to take a break from your project, life events interrupts. If you have set up a break schedule, then you do not have to worry about taking a permanent break. Taking breaks will allow you to concentrate on other parts of your life, while your brain processes what youvhave just completed in your creative session. If you are prone to procrastination following percolation time, then set and share your goals with another artist. This will help you return to your creative work more consistently.

Percolation time can be short or long. An example of a short percolation time is when you write a portion of a chapter during your creative session. Take a walk. Start working on a new chapter at your next session.

Here are some fears that you may encounter as you experience your percolation time: You may doubt your ability to return to your original creative pace.
You may not be comfortable experiencing a strong positive reaction when you complete a portion of your project. You may run out of ideas. You may not have completed any part of the project perfectly. Others might reject your work, which means that they may be rejecting you. You may be afraid that once you stop, you would not be able to start again. You may feel too powerless to finish this project, so you decide to give up on the project completely.

What can you do when you feel too powerless?
Remember to: Listen to all of your reactions. Schedule a working personal break. Practice talking, writing, acting ,exercisizing or dancing. You may also pray out your feelings.

Put away your feeling work for 24 hours. Reread your feeling work. Choose one new idea. Write or pray about this idea for five minutes. Identify your feelings now. Create one new short-term goal for your project.
Take the first action listed to complete your goal.
Check in with your feelings, thoughts and physical responses.

If you experience a strong positive reaction, then resume your previous creative process. If you experience an ambivalent reaction, you may be experiencing natural discomfort of learning a new set of skills. This is a temporary situation. Resume your previous creative process as soon as you can. Finally, if you experience a strong negative reaction, repeat the exercise until your experience a positive reaction or decide to work on a different project.

Percolation time can be both exhilarating and frustrating. Discipline yourself to keep on creating your unique product, while putting your strong reactions to work for you as you put them in their proper place.
About the Author
Lael Johnson is a trained creativity coach, writer and beader. She owns of Writer's Eye Advisory
Service and Creations Beadwork.
She can be reached at: http://www.writerseye.com
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