The Zone: My Process

Swift Current

For me, getting lost in the “the zone” is a multi-step process.  It starts with the right preamble, the right amount of peace and quiet, the right bodily fuel, the right music – a lot of “right” stuff.  Because my art is so diametrically opposed to my “9-5” job, sometimes it takes quite a lot for me to switch gears and find that place where I am blissfully oblivious to all of my surroundings and to where the creative inspiration flows like a chocolate fondue!

I try to recall how I feel when I am in the zone and retrace my steps to the origin of that feeling.  However, it is not as easily done as said.  For those of you reading this who are mom’s you know the constant, omni-lateral and unrelenting directions in which you are pulled, especially if you are a single mom.  So finding the time, space and peace necessary to locate that near elusive portal to “the zone” can be most challenging.

As I sit here in my office typing this, I find, while the impetus is here, the words need to be dragged out.  Like a cat bring removed from its carrier at the vet’s office, they stubbornly resist.  Yes, I know, I should be doing the job for which I am being paid.  However, as all creatives know, you have to strike while the iron is hot.  Sometimes inspiration comes without trying and without warning.  It’ll hit you when you get up in the middle of the night to relieve your bladder and prevents you from getting back to sleep afterwards.  And at 2:00 a.m. you succumb to the tossing and turning and heed its siren call, excusing yourself from the bedroom to go downstairs and act upon the thoughts that pried you from your sleep in the first place.

Sometimes, however, inspiration takes real effort.

Though I love to write, my primary outlet is photography.  I find my efforts are most successful when I start with a plan and enhance it with solitude and a great cup of coffee.  I know the whole solitude thing sounds anti-social, but for me the absence of interruptions, or guilt of wanting to make sure who I am with is sufficiently entertained, tends to amplify those giddy vibes of brilliance.  Or maybe I was a spy in another life and remembered I can travel faster alone?

Either way, it is a state in which I know  I will be most creative and recognizing that is half the battle.  As with any process you are determined to fruitfully repeat, I have learned to map out that routine, however anal that may sound.  The one which has proven to result in the best chance of getting to that creative space quicker than I did the previous time.  To continue following it until it becomes second nature, until getting in the zone is as easy as flipping a switch.

This has been my first Daily Prompt post, I hope you have enjoyed it!

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