Prepare to Write: Your Ritual of Preparation
Why are rituals an important part of our creative practices?
Twyla Tharp, in The Creative Habit: Use it and Learn it for Life, speaks of the power of the “ritual of preparation.”
“It’s vital to establish some rituals — automatic but decisive patterns of behavior — at the beginning of the creative process, when you are most at peril of turning back, chickening out, giving up, or going the wrong way.”
She says that thinking of these starting actions as a ritual has a transforming effect on her creative activities. I agree.
So, my question to you is this:
What are your current preparation rituals for your creative writing practice?
Stop and answer this question. If you have a ritual, great. Is it working for you? If your answer is “yes,” excellent, congratulations, and keep up the good work. If no rituals are in place, or the ones you use don’t inspire your to get to your writing, what can you do to improve or change them? If you said, “I have none.” Then, I say, “Okay. What could you do?”
Tips on creating a Preparation Ritual for your creative practice:
- Keep it simple
- Keep it short
- Let it flow easily into your creative project
Take the next few weeks to settle into your new Preparation Ritual and watch it help you be:
- More productive
- More grounded
- More joyful!
© 2008 Beth Barany
A version of this was first published in the September 2008 issue of Creativity Calling, the newsletter of the Creativity Coaching Association as “New Project Rituals.”