Celebrating Four Years of Southern Laced by Giving You CREATIVELY LACED: 5 Steps to Unleashing an Uninhibited Creative Process

“Always remember why you started. Get back to the basics… Otherwise, you’ll start to neglect your gift.”

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CHAPTER 1

Embrace and Enjoy your Gift

You were blessed with a unique and wonderful talent. Not everyone can do exactly what you do and how you do it. Your creative talent is something that’s been with you since you first learned to interact with the world. It’s important that you embrace and nurture your gift and allow it to develop. No matter what your creative gift, if you don’t take the time to foster it then how can you expect it to evolve?

When I began writing, it was more of a hobby, but it was also something that came naturally and easily to me. As I continued practicing my gift, it allowed me to further cultivate my skills as a writer. The more words that I could get onto the paper, the better my writing became over time.

Your God-given gifts and talents are like small seeds that have been planted deep within your soul that need to be nurtured and developed in order to flourish over time. There are a small few of us that are blessed with gifts that seem like they were just given to us naturally, but behind closed doors, even the most talented artists need to practice, rehearse, and nurture their talents.

Your life is unique. Every experience, trial, and triumph that you’ve encountered up to this point will add to your creativeness. Use your life’s lessons and turn them into your motivation to inspire others with your artistry or craft. The best songwriters and storytellers are those that draw upon past experiences and emotions to connect with their audience.

Each and every one of us has a story, but it is up to the creative to capture the story in a way that captivates and evokes emotion from the audience. The world is waiting for you to reveal your story.

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CHAPTER 2

Avoid the Self-Sabotaging Comparison Trap

It’s very easy to get caught up in the comparison trap. Especially for creatives when hitting a creative block. You can’t seem to get your thoughts, ideas, or inspirations organized in a way that seems logical enough to transfer outside of your own head. Everyone is guilty of falling into the comparison trap at some point, measuring your own successes and failures against those you see as competition. It happens so easily and without intention, but it’s a dangerous trap to fall into and it can easily leave you second guessing your own creative abilities.

You may find yourself doubting your own work or comparing your most recent project to the work of other creatives that you see online while scrolling down your Facebook or Instagram. Social media makes it easy for creatives to share ideas, projects and completed works for inspiration or simply to show off our talents and abilities. Comparing your own work to that of other creatives or feeling envious of their achievements can be emotionally exhausting and be draining to your self-esteem.

Everything that you see online isn’t always as it appears and there is almost always more to the story. Most creatives will only share their best work online regardless of the struggles it took to create their masterpiece. You may stumble on a tattoo artist’s page and discover a gorgeous chest piece that may have taken the artist several weeks to finish. Although perception is a reality for most people, you never see the struggles, problems, arising issues, and the labor that goes into the flawless artwork and creative design that you see posted down your timeline.

Every creative finds flaws in their own work and it’s easy to become your own biggest critic. The key is to celebrate the uniqueness of what you have to offer the world. Embrace the beauty of the differences that you see in your own work and the creative work of others. Not everyone is going to be a fan of your work, but guess what? That’s okay because there are those who will prefer your particular creative style as well.

Changing your thought process is the easiest way to get yourself out of the comparison trap. Instead of wallowing over your self-proclaimed failures, focus on your successes and your creative goals so that you can start building your own triumphs.

Envy is infectious. Once you start to feed it, it can take over and distort your view of reality while destroying your goals and success in the process.

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CHAPTER 3

Clear Your Headspace

Finding your inspiration as a creative requires you to often think outside the box. Often, we find that ideas flood our head combined with the everyday stresses of life, self-sabotaging thoughts, and sometimes doubt in our own abilities. Even our own anxieties can get the best of us. All of these thoughts, imaginations, and stress triggers are limiting your creative genius. You have to learn how to let it go.

Life will always throw us a curveball and the truth is that some situations and issues can be changed on our own accord while others are completely out of our control. Learning to embrace life’s experiences, whether good or bad, helps to fine-tune your creative skills. The idea is to foster what you can control and learn to embrace what you simply cannot.

Creatives don’t do well with mundane daily routines. Try adding new experiences into your daily routine as a stimulus to your creativity. Take a different route from the one you take daily, listen to music that you wouldn’t normally listen to, or try new and unusual foods inspired by countries that you would love to visit.

There are so many things you can do to evoke your creativity and clear out negative and debilitating thoughts.

It’s human nature to want to focus on the negative struggles in our lives, but in order to reach your full creative capability, you must learn to let go of what you cannot control.

Dwelling over small incompetencies or a single dissatisfied client can wreak havoc on your self-esteem. As you widen your perception of yourself and the thoughts racing through your mind, your perception of your own creative ability will also be transformed.

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CHAPTER 4

Learn to Embrace Your Authenticity

You were blessed with unique gifts and talents even before you were born. These talents are unique to your personality, style, and manner of execution. Whether you’re the caregiver, an idealist, a hopeless romantic, success-oriented achiever, or a militant reformer, there is no one else on earth that can execute your gifts and talents the way that you do.

Everything from your spiritual beliefs, personal style, your upbringing, moral beliefs, experiences, and every trial and tribulation you’ve encountered has contributed to your abilities. There is no reason to try to mimic the way someone else performs in their gifts. Doing so could result in missing out on the life that God has intended for you. Imagine what it would be like living in a world where everyone had the same thoughts and ideas and implemented concepts in the same capacity. What a boring and mundane society that would be!

Imagine if all musicians played music in the same tone and every singer held the same pitch when singing. What would it be like if every photographer used the exact same lighting, angles, and scenes when capturing photos? What if every single writer used the same tone and writing style? No one can see the world in the way that you do, so let go of your inhibitions and stop aiming to be perfect because we are all human and not one human being is perfect in this world.

Embrace your authentic creativity and learn to walk in your own purpose. Wouldn’t you rather be a first-rate version of yourself rather than a second-rate version of someone else?

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CHAPTER 5

Take a Step Back and Regroup

The creative mind is a beautiful thing, but creatives sometimes become overwhelmed with deadlines, flooding ideas, apprehensions about your abilities, and even anguish over how your creative efforts will be received by the world.

Anxiety is a natural emotion felt by human beings especially when you produce a creative work with the expectation of criticism or rejection. But it can also be debilitating to your creative process and hinder your ability to produce your best work. It’s okay to take a step back when you become overwhelmed.

Remember, you have to first change your thought process and stop expecting negative responses from your creative works before you can start down the road to self-gratification and confidence in your own creative process.

Next, eliminate stress triggers that are not needed in your life. Whether you need to take a break from creating for a couple of days or a break from social media, eliminating unwanted and unnecessary stress factors will help you to declutter your mind and lighten your stress load.

Also, you don’t want to burn yourself out. When creating starts to feel more like a task and you have very little time to actually enjoy your gifts, your creative process becomes hindered and you may start to neglect and even resent your gift.

Take a step back and truly absorb what is going on around you. Take the time to prioritize those tasks that simply cannot wait from those that can be put on the back burner for now. Don’t try to do everything at once. You’re not superhuman and no one expects you to have superhuman strengths.

Eliminate anything that is not a priority and may be causing you unwanted stress. Once you declutter your thoughts and eliminate the unnecessary, you will be surprised at how fluid your ideas can become. You never know, you might just stumble upon your next greatest and most rewarding creative project yet.

Copyright © 2017 Kelly Stone
All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by an information storage and retrieval system except by a reviewer who may quote brief passages in a review to be printed in a magazine or newspaper without permission in writing from the publisher.

Meet the Author

“The constant gnawing and wanting to take nothing and make it into something. Stillness that irritates restless fingers connected to a steady wrist. The need to see the outcome of dreams manifested. The unmistakable gift one must live with from day-to-day. It’s a shadow in the dark waiting to be captured, written, sketched, hummed… It is the passion to create.” -Kelly Stone

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Kelly Stone is the Founder of Southern Laced, an online magazine, which features weekly articles about Fashion, Art, Love, News, Entertainment, Music, Photography and Lifestyle. She is the author of the romance the Southern Laced series and Kelly Stone: Life After My Fall From Grace. Her books can be found on Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

Visit www.southernlaced.com and INSTAGRAM to keep up with Kelly’s latest projects.

3 Comments Add yours

  1. LifeOfa says:

    You have been nominated for the mystery blogger award by me! https://ameenahweb.wordpress.com/2018/04/04/mystery-blogger-award/ (Check out the link for more details)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Kelly Stone says:

      Thank you!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. LifeOfa says:

        No problem, your blog really is great!

        Liked by 1 person

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