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12 Words to Boost Creativity and Why Creativity Matters

Does the word "creativity" make you think of paint, clay, and kids playing dress up?  We all start out creative, but school and adult life might make us think that creativity is something to be left to artists and geeks. Then we get to the workplace and are expected to be innovative and productive. Hmm, don't we need to be creative for that? 

Life is creative. All of it. We are born from its impulse. We grow up, thrive, and participate in the human experience because creativity is our nature. 

If you have lost your creative spark, here are 12 words to think about: 

  1. Imagine
  2. Plant
  3. Air
  4. Mix
  5. Illuminate 
  6. Collect 
  7. Shift 
  8. Stretch 
  9. Reflect 
  10. Propel 
  11. Focus 
  12. Release 

Start with your imagination. Collect your ideas and then shape them, mix, illuminate, reflect and focus on what you want to bring into the world. When you are ready, release your creation! 

Print out this post, cut out the words, and use as "creativity...

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A Word for Every Teacher and Student at the Start of the New Year: Abundance

Our principal asked us to pick a word at the start of the school year. The word would be our North Star to guide our goals, inform our lessons, and inspire us to do great work. School initiatives sometimes fall away as the year progresses, but a good administrator won't let that happen.

She didn't let that happen. We revisited our words at the start of the new year. What would your word be?

It feels poetic to pick just one word. No long lists, no big visions, no novels. I thought about it for days. Nothing felt right. If you know my work, you know that there are three words I think about a lot: calm, creative, and compassionate. It is my desire to see all students, teachers and classrooms feel that way in every school around the world.  But these words can't be separated. 

Why?  It is easy to be calm if we feel safe. When we feel safe, we are free to find creative solutions, work harder, and take big risks. Safety means we are not threatened...

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Books and Bliss: How to Stay Calm During the Holiday Season

It’s the official start of the most chaotic time of the year. Take the pressure off and read a poem, quote or chapter of a book. Bibliotherapy is one of the best ways to escape the stressful buzz of cyber Monday and nurture your spirit.

What books most inspire you?  Take one off the shelf anytime you feel the stress monster interrupting your bliss.

I’m reading the book, Atomic Habits: Tiny Changes, Remarkable Results by James Clear. It reminds me exactly of what I know to be true, that big changes happen one step at a time. And if you are a writer, Bird by Bird, by Anne Lamott tells us the same thing about the writing process. Build a book, the way a bird builds a nest, one branch at a time.

Most importantly, these books ask us to take action to shape the way we view ourselves. If we think we are stressed and unable to handle the holidays, our brain will agree and make it so.  But what if you view yourself as a calm, creative, and compassionate...

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What Can "Beginners" Teach Us About Writing, Teaching and Life? How to Feel Energized and Not Get Stuck in a Rut!

 

When have you been a beginner?  It can be a little bit scary, but also exciting and invigorating to be brand new at something. Yoga teaches us how to approach arriving on the mat each day with a new attitude. Holding a beginner's mind can help us perform better as writers and teachers too. Do you agree? 

Grab your journal and watch this 1 minute video to guide your writing.  It worked for me and I hope you find it helpful too. 

Post your thoughts on our Facebook group or on Twitter @WritingYogaEd.

I look forward to hearing your ideas! 

With warm seasonal wishes, 

Stef 

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Back to School & Feeling Focused & Calm (at least that's the goal!)

 

Even if you are not a teacher or a parent, you still can feel a back-to-school kind of energy in the air.  Everyone seems to be running around trying to settle back into the routine of learning and more structured days. 

If you are looking for quick ways to stay calm, focused, and  find joy the work day, please watch my video. 

Thank you and have an amazing 2022-2023 school year! 

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10 Journal Writing Ideas To Get You Writing! [Writing Yoga® Prompt #2001]

After working with thousands of students over the years, I know for certain that most people believe they do not have enough time, talent, or energy to live the life of their dreams.  I also know it's just not true!

Keeping a journal helps us to consider our deepest desires, dreams, goals and challenges. People love writing in journals, but where to start? If you feel overwhelmed or unable to connect to the part of you that has big dreams, The Writing Yoga® Method can help. It is based upon the philosophy that life does not have to be overwhelming and complicated. In fact, we work best when feeling healthy, confident, and joyful!

Here are some simple things you can do NOW to get started with a dream-building and journal writing practice. 

Lumi Sit:

Before you start writing in your journal, take a "Lumi Breath."  This is what I tell my young students and this is what I will say to you. A Lumi Breath is a deep breath that makes you feel luminous. When you take...

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What's the Difference Between a Beach and a Library? [Writing Yoga ® Prompt #2000]

Give me a beach. Find me a corner in the reading room. I know, I know, not everyone likes a beach. Some people can't stand the stillness of a library.  That's okay, we all have destinations we love and ones we avoid but if you ever spent time watching sea birds wade, you know how much there is to learn. 

Beaches and libraries can both be introspective places filled with endless possibilities but they can also be the very place where storms and ideologies conflict.

So for this prompt, let's imagine powdery sand and turquoise sea and sky.  After all, you came here to relax. 

Lumi Sit:

Breathe deeply. Close your eyes.  Think of a quiet place that makes you feel happy and secure.  Sit for 5 minutes noticing all the thoughts and feelings (even the ones that make you uncomfortable). Open your eyes. Move to the "Lumi Write" without pause. 

Lumi Write: 

What did you feel and see in the "Lumi Sit"?  Take 5...

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Reinventing Mondays: Do One Thing Today that Makes You Feel Luminous

What would happen if you decided today would be amazing?  Ditch the long lists, struggles, “I should….” or “someday I will…”

Just do an activity you love and do it today.

Maybe it’s dinner with friends or family. Maybe it is writing one paragraph of your novel or dancing to a favorite song. It could be a walk in the sun on your lunch break or a simple act of kindness. Is there one thing that you can do today that would make you feel luminous?

Reinvent your Monday by meeting all expectations at home and at work, while finding a sense of excitement because you will also do something that feels inspiring.  

What’s your one thing?  Make it easy, make it fun, and make sure you do it!


 
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Top Ten Words for a Calm Holiday Season the Writing Yoga® Way

Can you hear those sleigh bells starting to ring? Does the thought of the approaching holidays bring on some stress? Break out your journal and write for some instant stress-relief! 

Yoga philosophy teaches us to listen to our instincts, stay focused, be a warrior for what matters, and show compassion for ourselves and others.  These are great skills to help thrive during challenging times.

If it's been a while since you have felt healthy, creative and calm, here are some lessons from the yoga mat. Think of these words throughout the day and whenever you pick up a journal to write.

TOP TEN WORDS TO REMEMBER THIS HOLIDAY SEASON

  1. Breathe - Take deep breaths all day, every day.
  2. Simplicity - Keep it simple, simple gifts, simple dinners.
  3. Ease - Find the place where things feel easy, even in discomfort, especially in discomfort.
  4. Sequencing - Choose the right words to say, write, and think. Sometimes the order of your words matter more than the words themselves.
  5. Flow - Find...
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Who Was Your Favorite Teacher? Back to School Edition [Writing Prompt #263]

Mrs. Diller made me feel like I could do anything.  It was first grade and we had class pets, peanut butter cookies, and lots of granola because nobody seemed to have allergies or be afraid of carbs back then.  We had tables set up in each corner of the room. There was a red table with velvet cloth, a blue table with blue cellophane and a green table filled with plants in macramé holders.  We had plenty of time to read and use crayons and imagination. We stretched during our morning circle. My teacher helped me to embrace myself and others. It was the best school year of my life.

Early teachers shape who we are. I see that now, and take my responsibility as an elementary school librarian very seriously. If my students love books, love to learn, and love each other, I will have helped shape who they are for the rest of their lives.  It’s no small task and honestly, the responsibility scares me sometimes! 

But it is a good reminder of how...

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