creativity

5 TED Talks For Your Playlist

I’m trying to be more intentional about how I waste my time. Stick with me for a moment. While I like to spend time reading, there are too many times when I waste time trying to beat a really hard level of Cookie Jam.  I’ve decided that in those moments where I’m just wasting time I’d prefer to do something more productive. I decided to start listening to more TED Talks.

What are TED Talks?

A TED Talk is a showcase for speakers presenting great ideas. Usually, the format calls for presentations on the shorter side. Think about all of the lectures we’ve all (almost) fallen asleep listening to. The talks are thought-provoking and stimulate conversation. They can be inspirational, funny, or mind-blowing and they cover almost all topics — from science to business to global issues.

One of my favorite TED Talks even ended up in a Beyonce song: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s We Should All Be Feminists.

Here are a few of my favorite TED Talks that you may want to add to your playlist.

5 TED Talks For Your Playlist - The Palmetto Peaches - palmsinatl.com

5 TED Talks For Your Playlist

MANOUSH ZOMORODI

How boredom can lead to your most brilliant ideas

Description: Do you sometimes have your most creative ideas while folding laundry, washing dishes or doing nothing in particular? It’s because when your body goes on autopilot, your brain gets busy forming new neural connections that connect ideas and solve problems. Zomorodi explains the connection between spacing out and creativity.

 

ELIZABETH GILBERT

Your Elusive Creative Genius

Description: Elizabeth Gilbert muses on the impossible things we expect from artists and geniuses — and shares the radical idea that, instead of the rare person “being” a genius, all of us “have” a genius.

 

SARAH LEWIS

Embrace the near win

Description: At her first museum job, art historian Sarah Lewis noticed something important about an artist she was studying: Not every artwork was a total masterpiece. She asks us to consider the role of the almost-failure, the near win, in our own lives.

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The Problem With Goal Setting

The Problem With Goal Setting - The Palmetto Peaches - palmsinatl.comIn my opinion, 2016 was just one awful headline after the other and I’m leaving out politics because I’m still trying to wrap my head around that: countless shootings in the U.S, including Orlando, Brexit, lead-poisoned water in Flint, Michigan, the conflict in Aleppo, exploding phones, Harambe, Brangelina, and Zika to name a few. Also,

We lost Prince.

We also lost Muhammad Ali, Alan Rickman, Merle Haggard,  David Bowie, Harper Lee, George Martin, Bill Nunn, Anton Yelchin, Christina Grimmie , Arnold Palmer, Florence  Henderson, Gene Wilder, Gwen Ifill, Jose Fernandez, Pat Summitt, Leonard Cohen, Ron Glass, Zsa Zsa Gabor, Alan Thicke and Craig Sager. These are just the names I pulled from the top of my head. I probably missed quite a few legends.

On a personal level,  2016 was kind of just meh.I had some awesome things happen, but there were definitely quite a few setbacks as well. I had a huge issue with goal-setting, or rather following through with the goals I set. I’m happy to say goodbye to this year and get a fresh start.

 

The Problem With Goal Setting

For me, the problem with goal setting is failing short of the goals. When I miss a goal I get frustrated with myself. However, I had to remind myself this is just an opportunity to reevaluate and recommit. There are factors you can control and factors you can’t control when it comes to achieving goals. When you don’t have success with your goals, I think it’s your responsibility to figure out why and to make a conscious effort to take real action towards your goal.

  • Figure out the reason(s) that the goal wasn’t accomplished. I realized that my goals didn’t map back to my vision board which I look at daily. After writing down my goals, I only revisited them once. Goals need to be revised and evaluated. I didn’t really have a plan (with the exception of my savings challenge) to accomplish my goals.
  • Decide if this is still a goal. I think it’s okay to abandon a goal. Not I’m saying give up just because it’s hard or you didn’t achieve it the first time around. Let’s say your goal was to get a promotion. However, you then find out that there isn’t much room for growth within the company – it’s okay to abandon that goal.
  • Redefine your goal, if necessary. In the example above, I said it’s okay to abandon the goal. I stick by that, but the other option is to amend or redefine your goal. Perhaps, instead of making a promotion your career goal, you amend your goal to finding a position that provides you room to grow.

The Problem With Goal Setting- The Palmetto Peaches - palmsinatl.com

 

Did you accomplish your goals for 2016? If not, tell me how you plan to recommit and reevaluate your goals for 2017.

Donni Siggy--The Palmetto Peaches

7 Ways to Recharge Your Creativity

7 Ways to Recharge Your Creativity - The Palmetto Peaches - palmsinatl.comTruth: Sometimes Ace and I will text each other something on the lines of:

Can I post tomorrow? I’m just not feeling it.

Creativity isn’t reserved for artists. Creative thinking skills and coming up with original ideas are useful in a wide variety of fields. So we’ve all had those moments when we’re just uninspired and unable to create or produce anything.

“Creativity is just connecting things. When you ask creative people how they did something, they feel a little guilty because they didn’t really do it, the just saw something. It seemed obvious to them after a while” – Steve Jobs

 

A constant push for creativity can leave you burnt out and unhappy. For me, this blog is my creative outlet. I don’t really have that many opportunities to showcase my creativity at my 9 to 5. However, sometimes the blog can feel more like work than my actual job when I’m experiencing a creative block or I feel like I’m forcing myself to be creative. So today I’m sharing seven ways to recharge your creativity.

7 Ways to Recharge Your Creativity

      1. Move your body!

        For most creative pursuits,with the exception of performing arts, you pretty much have to  remain stationary as you work on your project and many jobs require that sit at your desk all day. Give yourself a reason to stretch out your muscles and move. Expending energy can jump start your body and brain. 

      2. Try a new creative outlet or hobby. 

        If you’re a writer – you cannot write all the time. Hello, burnout. Find something else you love to do and you’ll end up valuing the time you spend on your art even more. Check out Ace’s post on hobbies.  Look into taking a class to further your skills or to learn something new entirely – this could be your new source of inspiration.

      3. Break your routine. 

        Do some of your work outdoors on a coffee shop patio, or take your laptop to a new part of the office. Sometimes you just need a change of scenery to give yourself the opportunity to refocus or to be inspired again.

      4. Don’t let a deadline limit your creativity.

        Trust me. I understand deadlines. My job consists of nothing but timelines and immovable deadlines. However, sometimes we can let our time limit pressure us into just creating a product without allocating time for thinking and brainstorming. Quick results may impress, but I’d bet innovation would be considered even more impressive.

        “Think left and think right and think low and think high. Oh, the thinks you can think up if only you try” – Dr. Seuss

      5. Find a buddy.

        Another great way to recharge your creativity is get a new perspective. Seek out a coworker or friend to run your idea by. However, don’t limit the people you speak with to only those who are artistic or creative by nature. Sometimes it’s the people who think the most unlike you, that will spark your creativity.

      6. Revisit past ideas.

        Circle back on things you’ve created in the past to help spark new ideas.Y’all should know by now that I’m a list girl and I keep a notebook and pen with me at all times. For example, when I’m looking for inspiration for new blog posts, I flip through my notebook for ideas. If you’re not a notebook and pen kind of person – start a running list on your phone and jot down your observations.

      7. Get some zzzzs. 

        Sleep. Well that sounds reasonable right? Check out the research. A 2009 study from the University of California – San Diego found that participants who spent more time in REM sleep performed better on tests that demanded creative problem-solving. A 2012 study from Georgetown University, suggests that taking a power nap can boost your creativity. In my research, I also found a number of articles that outlined how dreaming and daydreaming enhances creativity.

So peeps, I hope these tips are helpful and I’ll leave you with a quote:

“Creativity is contagious, pass it on” – Albert Einstein

How do you recharge your creativity? Leave your tips and tricks in the comments below!

Donni Siggy--The Palmetto Peaches

Earth Without Art: National Arts & Humanities Month

 

Earth Without Art - National Arts & Humanities Month - The Palmetto Peaches

 

Imagine a world without music, a world without books, or a world without dance. Imagine a world without Leonardo, Michelangelo, Donatello, and Raphael. Now I was just referring to the famous artists, but perhaps like some of you, my only exposure to these men in my youth were the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles who were named after them.  We wouldn’t have them either if we didn’t have art.  Go further and imagine not being able to watch your favorite TV show because no one wrote the script. Think of the chaos that would ensue without being able to read your child their favorite nighttime story. In the United States, the arts mean multiple things for a variety of people. It encompasses many of the things we use and do on a daily basis. Many aspects of our cultures, entertainment, and the diversity of America involve the arts. If we removed all of the arts from our lives the gaps would be tremendous.

October is National Arts & Humanities Month. It has been designated as a “coast-to-coast collective recognition of the importance of culture in America. Since 1985, the month of October has been designated to encourage all Americans to explore new facets of the arts and humanities in their lives, and to begin a lifelong habit of active participation in the arts.”

I think about all the ways the arts has impacted my life and it’s a little overwhelming.  So let’s back up a bit and let me explain why I’m such an advocate of the arts. I’m an only child that grew up with a huge extended family. I mean cousins for days. It’s easy to get lost in such a multitude of personalities. How can you be seen or be heard? When I started dance at age eight (which in the dance world is quite late), I think I really started becoming myself. I started dancing once a week at Trudy’s School of Dance and that studio quickly became my home away from home. Before you knew it, I was an assistant teacher, I joined the dance company and I started attending the Charleston County School of the Arts (SOA).  I lived and breathed dance.

As I grew older and continued to immerse myself in my art – I became more confident, more open to other people and new experiences. Dance made it easier for me to make genuine connections with new people. As I began choreographing it challenged me to be more creative – and the more creative I was the more courageous I became – inside and outside of the dance studio. It was also such a great experience to see how art affected others and changed their lives. The one thing I loved the most about SOA was seeing the talent and creativity of my peers. It helps you understand people who aren’t like you. It also pushed me to be a better artist.

National Arts & Humanities Month - The Palmetto Peaches

In America, culture, diversity, and entertainment are all expressed through the arts. People can easily share aspects of their culture by allowing someone to hear a song that is popular in their culture or learn a tradition native to their country or culture.  This exchange of culture is so vital to the vibrancy of our country and why National Arts & Humanities month is so important.  Sometimes folks just think of “the arts” as this thing that happens on a stage or is hung on a museum wall. Art can affect a life in such a positive way and I encourage you to learn how arts in education is such an amazing experience for students.

I think there will always be someone who questions “what is art and do we really need it“. There are no clear distinctions on where to draw the line. The fact such a range of types of art can exist is a small testimony to America’s diversity. Popular culture and the fine arts are similar because both have the questions of freedom of expression, censorship, and the impact of words and images on impressionable minds stamped on its content. Your exposure to the arts may not be as expansive or direct as someone else, but because of the broad categories of the arts everyone can be considered artists or at least be involved in the arts on some level. Think about that the next time you go shopping, admire a really cool design of a new product or laugh at a funny commercial on TV. You just supported the arts…now can you live without it?

 

National Arts & Humanities Month - The Palmetto Peaches

 

Join in on the celebration of National Arts & Humanities Month and show your art or your love of art! If the arts have impacted your life, I’d love to hear your story. Feel free to share it in the comments below.

Donni Siggy--The Palmetto Peaches