Monday, February 11, 2008

Does Water Help The Creative Process?

Una Mas De Ducha (One More of the Shower) - atwose on Flickr

Ever hear someone say that they do their best thinking in the shower? That's me. For some reason, water seems to trigger the creative process in me like almost nothing else. It can be the shower in the morning, a tub in the evening, a Jacuzzi under the stars - doesn't really matter. It just seems that water gets the juices flowing.

I've racked my brain for a logical answer and haven't really found one. I suppose we could look at it metaphysically and say that the sound or sensation of running water, is like a subliminal message to the mind, telling it to let things flow.

Or perhaps, it's that I have adopted these routines over four decades. I used to read voraciously in the tub, and the act of taking a shower tells my body it's time to go to work. But I can say for certain that a vast majority of the ideas I come up with come from a place that seems to read "just add water".

Of course, there is a downside to this. Ever try balancing a laptop on the edge of the tub? It's a Wile E. Coyote scene waiting to happen. The laptop hasn't gone in yet, but the drink, towel, reading glasses and watch all have. So now I leave the laptop on the kitchen table and use my new analog PDA (writing journal) instead. Of course, paper gets wet too, and a warm tub has the effect of putting me to sleep. Not terribly productive, and it has potential to get ruined. But at least I won't get electrocuted in the process and my laptop stays safe.

But I think there is something deeper here. Everyone has a place or an environment that recharges them. Mine always seem to involve water and wind. I love the rain, storms make me feel recharged. One of my favorite places to relax and let nature work its magic is on a boat on Silver Lake. It's a High Sierra alpine lake that always has a breeze and the sound of water lapping on the hull of the boat.

As a kid, I would spend hours in the pool, coming out only long enough to grab a quick lunch. Ocean creatures are my favorites, and dolphins make me happy.

For some reason, my body is tuned into water, and water seems to let the creative muse out.

So why do you care? Simple. Everyone has a place, an environment that relaxes or rejuvenates them. Perhaps it's trees or a garden. Or maybe it's just the feeling of the sun on our face. Think to those times when you feel recharged, full of energy. What are the sensations, the sounds, the scents? And how can you recreate them? Find a surrogate for the sun or a proxy for the garden. Maybe you can pot a plant - easy to do indoors. Get out on your lunch break and soak up a few rays. Whatever it is, find the key to unlocking your creative vault. Just the process alone will make you feel better, stronger, more energized. And we can all use more of that!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I used this pic in my blog. Let me know if you have a problem.

The image credits link here.

Let me know if it is a problem.