Tools for MT Creatives: Real Time Tools

Hey there, fellow #musictherapyblogger, music therapist, or creative!

Thanks for stopping by to read my response to Julie’s blogging challenge #2: sharing about a tool that we use in our daily lives as music therapists. I love Julie’s question, and want to take it a step further. For those of you who know me, this shouldn’t be a surprise! Regardless, I’d like to share something with you that is very important and near to my heart – my creative toolbox.

As I began the journey of developing The Music Therapy Marketplace, I discovered how deeply my clinical life was married to my existence as a creative. Not the type of creative that creates beautiful poetry or art, but the kind that lives in creative head-space of constantly writing songs for clients, coming up with new clinical implementation ideas, and one who desires to make music FUN. But – to also look at it through a personal lens, I needed to embrace my life as a creative so that hidden facets of my life could be embraced along with the rest of me. Now before you blink at your computer screen and think, “yes, of course!”, let me explain. I consider those hidden facets to be productivity, contentment, fear, fatigue, and CREATIVITY. My creativity is often sometimes so, so hidden.

You know what I discovered while exploring that marriage? Being creatively engaged for a long period of time is exhausting and really really hard! And it requires us to be honest about how connected or DISconnected we feel to our creativity.

So I’d like to share with you….

Tools for Creatives | The Music Therapy Marketplace

I’m no expert, but I DO know about being a business owner, clinical work, and maintaining creative space and would love to share some of the tools I use *daily* to help myself stay in good, clear, healthy creative space.

Tool 1: Checking-In. I always send a lunch-time text to one of my people to spark a conversation about how their day is going. It my be my husband, a member of my creativity tribe, or a snapchat to a family member, but it always ends with a warm fuzzy feeling and a HUGE creative boost. I have to say that I am SO thankful for my people. They are kind, loving, supportive, and creative in their own right! They are MT-BC’s, priests, clinical psychologists, biologists, librarians, graphic designers, and event planners.

Tool 2: Moving and stretching. I do something gentile multiple times a day (read: I don’t like to be sweaty but understand the necessity of movement). It makes me much less grumpy, enables me to sit on the floor with all of my littles, and gives me uninterrupted, quiet, and necessary head space that refuels my positive energy tank. I use a morning yoga dvd, a stretching routine my chiropractor approved from Pinterest, and a nice walk around the space I’m in. I definitely consider this work because it is a conscious decision I make for myself, even if it is really soothing.

Tool 3: BREAKS. YES! Please, please, please a GUILT FREE  break! I plan them in my day religiously. I love them because they allow me WALK. AWAY. and come out of that creative space for a while. And you know what? I am ALWAYS more creative when I come back to my work space. My “breaks” are: reading, playing with my niece/nephew, snacks/tea break, practicing my trumpet, reading mom blogs (even though I’m not a mom), and the occasional power nap. I don’t do ALL of these things every day, but I do make it a priority to do a few. Don’t see Facebook or Pinterest? It’s because they are pits of doom for my productivity. I just lost three minutes because I had to go check Facebook after I typed it in the previous sentence…. See?!?

I have so many other tools that I use, but I wanted to start with the ones I use in real time, and have huge impacts on my day! I would love to hear about some of the real time tools you use in your day, so drop your comment below!

Thank you for stopping in!

Steward, The Music Therapy Marketplace