Change Your World View

Posted on May 13, 2010

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In the 90’s hit TV show Friends, one of the most successful series of all time, the close nit cast often found themselves at their primary gathering point Central Perk. It was there that they debated, philosophized, and pontificate about the issues of love, loss, and life. Besides making us laugh for 10 years straight in 1/2 hours increments, Friends also introduced us to the ‘Central Perk’ way of living.

Whether you are creative or not, an artist or accountant, or left or right-brained, we are all creatures of habit. We love familiar surroundings like Central Perk and we hate change. We resist the disequilibrium that is the result of going to new places and trying new experiences. We drive the same way to work, we eat at the same restaurants, and play in the same places. It’s safe and predictable, unfortunately so are the ideas that you generate from this cycle of familiarity. This past year, I have been making time to read, write, and gather my thoughts a few times a week. I have been intentional to go to as many new places each week and avoiding returning to the same places- even if I love them. I have been resisting finding my ‘Central Perk’ (although a couple are forming) by claiming any one spot as home. 

Being intentional about living among the city has helped me tremendously to come up with new ideas, think up new solutions, and decide on new directions. New locations (and ways of getting there) are the fertile soil to plant the seeds of creativity in our minds. These places don’t have to be creatively designed (although that helps) but just new. When an environment is new or unfamiliar your senses are awakened and you are more acute to details, colors, words, textures, people, and experiences. It fertilizes your thoughts and accelerates your artistic growth. Read this excerpt from Artist’s Way Every Day:

For those of us working to increase our creativity, it is always good to be out and about, especially on our feet. Walking, the simplest of tools, is among the most profound. It makes us larger than we are. When we walk, we wake up our consciences. We enliven our senses. We arrive at a sense of well-being. We experience “conscious contact” with a power greater than ourselves.
–Julia Cameron

So choose ‘new’ this week over the familiar. Say goodbye to your ‘Central Perk’ places and find new ones. Drive a new way to work, shop across town, eat ethnic foods, and meet more strangers. Besides, our ‘Central Perk’ should be the community we live in instead of the place we get coffee.

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