Michelle • • 6 min read
Get Creative: A Guide to Beating the Zombie Apocalypse
WARNING: Zombies are infiltrating the planet, and I’m not talking about what’s on the box or the big screen!
The zombie population is on the rise in rich, privileged countries all over the world; I’ve witnessed them dragging their feet through corporate districts, seen their lifeless faces staring out from behind shop counters, and heard their cold, monotone voices echoing on the lines of company call centers.
What is so scary about this scenario? Well, we all know the one thing zombies crave: BRAINS.
Brains with so much potential are being eaten away by more and more of us who are joining the legions of the walking dead and surrendering to unfulfilling careers and unrewarding lifestyles. The question is – why do people slide into complacent lives when they have both potential and opportunity on their side?
If you are unhappy with your work or home life, this is likely due to…
a) Feeling you have no control over your present situation
b) Your present situation does not allow you to express your full potential as a person
If you feel you are dangerously close to being sucked into the mindless zombie netherworld, don’t fear! I have a 3-step guide for how you can find fulfillment in your life, rejoin the ranks of the living and reclaim your brain from the onslaught of the undead.
Better still, I think you already have the solution. The best part is, it won’t cost you a thing – and you can start applying it to your life right now!
ZOMBIE RESISTANCE TIP #1: RECOGNIZE YOUR INNER CREATIVITY
No matter who you are, you have the potential to create something amazing (zombies don’t know this). Just because you can’t glide a paintbrush across a canvas like Picasso – even if you struggle drawing stick figures – this does not mean you are not a creative person!
Being creative is about much more than producing a physical work of art. Expressions of creativity are found everywhere. When we face a problem, we rely on creative thinking to solve it; lawyers, scientists –even accountants rely on their creative ability to solve problems.
The need to recognize our individual creativity is so important for our chances of leading happy and fulfilling lives, because we gain self-esteem and a sense of achievement when we have creative ideas. Why? Because we are natural-born creators. Darwin taught us that our evolutionary drive has been powered by an instinctual need to reproduce and survive. If the purpose of life than is to give and nurture life, we should naturally extend this same logic to the treatment of our creative ideas.
Across the animal kingdom, differing species boast their own distinct physical advantages that are designed to aid the perpetuation of their kind; from the speed and strength of cheetahs, to the prey-ensnaring claws of birds, and even the protective armor-like shells of tortoises. For human beings however, our particular bragging-rights owe to our complex brains, which allow us to produce creative solutions to secure the top spot on the food chain.
But where we humans differ from our animal cousins is that our evolution as a species has not been purely determined biologically, but culturally. Look around you – from mobile phones and building design, to fashion and fast-food, everything you see is the result of the creative brainwave intended to advance our way of living. Since the Industrial Revolution, societies have exploded with innovation and production – humans have progressed more in the last 200 years as a result of rapid cultural expansion than in the 200,000 years since homo-sapiens have passed the baton from their hominoid predecessors.
The structures of modern-day society therefore reveal how nurturing our creative ideas enhances our cultural evolution, and leads to our successful and continued existence. If our creative ideas haven’t paid their dues, we don’t advance; our existence stalls and we become zombified from failing to tap into our creative potential.
Don’t surrender to the undead masses aimlessly roaming the earth – get those creative juices flowing with these tips:
Meditating forces us to stop and pay attention to ourselves, allowing us to uncover our core thoughts and feelings which become buried beneath the fuzz of the outside world. Forget facebook, tv or the internet; take a break to clear your mind and focus on the creative ideas you overlook each day.
Get in touch with nature
Unleash your creative spirit by experiencing the wonder of the natural world around us. Take a stroll along the beach, hike up a mountain, or stargaze on a clear night – looking out to seemingly endless open spaces instils a sense of infinity within us, which helps to broaden our mind’s horizons beyond the borders we have subconsciously set ourselves.
Try something new
Stimulate your imagination through discovery. Learn about an ancient culture, speak a different language, or try cooking an exotic dish. Igniting our senses and learning new skills helps to give us a fresh perspective on the things we do in our life, often sparking new creative visions.
ZOMBIE RESISTANCE TIP #2- BRING YOUR IDEAS TO LIFE
Having an awesome brain is one thing, but acting upon it and bringing your idea to fruition is the mother of all anti-zombie weaponry. Achieving our creative goals bolsters our confidence and sense of self, helping us to steer clear of depression and winding up in jobs and ways of living that undervalue our potential.
The full creative process, including the initial creative spark–through to the idea’s development, and finally to the end product– injects meaning into our lives by:
Demonstrating your unique identity through the expression of your individuality
Validating your own unique purpose in the world
Giving us control over something – no matter how low you may feel in your life, the power to create can never be taken from you
Have a think about how much time you waste everyday. What could you achieve if you were using this time productively? If you’re stuck, here are some pointers:
Make a record – Start a journal and collect your creative thoughts
Plan – Develop an action plan and set goals for yourself – dedication delivers results
Reach out – Talk to people you know about your ideas – this will make you accountable to your aspirations
Research – Seek out people/ groups/ companies who can help get your idea out. Kickstarter is a fantastic website aimed at giving life to creative projects
We can break ourselves out of ruts in our lives by adopting new ways of thinking, and then moving our feet in the direction of our thoughts.
Control + expression + validation = the perfect arsenal against the threat of a zombie take-over!
ZOMBIE RESISTANCE TIP #3 – RECOGNIZE THAT ANXIETY STIFLES YOUR CREATIVITY
Whether our creative ideas are brought to life also depends on how we respond to the natural anxiety and ambiguity that occurs when a creative lightning bolt strikes. Self-doubting assumptions such as ‘I’ll never be able to make this work,’ or ‘people will think my idea is stupid’ often overpower and even snuff out the original creative spark.
But how do we keep the zombie masses at bay and challenge the damaging effects of doubt and anxiety?
Gag the editor
If you often abandon your ideas in their infancy due to over-analysis, you are robbing yourself of potential success. Give your idea a chance to grow legs before you assume it won’t walk.
Don’t allow your admiration of other’s work to develop into discouragement towards your own ideas. Creativity is about expressing our individuality, and while you may think you lack the talent to produce a creative work as good as those you admire, you possess your own talents that others would envy. Let the success of others drive you to your own success.
Bring on the positive reinforcements
Dissolve your anxiety with a dose of inspiration. Surround yourself with motivating images, quotes or anecdotes that help you to feel empowered. Join a community that shares the same goals as you to provide a constant stream of support and stimulation. Remember that we are what we absorb!
Accept your anxiety
Because anxiety is a natural human emotion, it will never disappear completely. Whilst we can’t send them packing, we can change our attitude towards anxious feelings by using them as a force to drive us harder, rather than defeat us. Channel the adrenaline rush into your creative master plan and allow your ideas to burst to life!
What we take to be obstacles confining us within a set of circumstances is an illusion
– It is this thought pattern which has brought the zombie threat to epidemic proportions! Too many people live below their capabilities for fear of failure – we need to recapture the fearlessness we had when we were kids – the inner child who was never afraid to be wrong, or to have a go.
By following this 3-step guide to reaching your full creative potential you can help to prevent the zombie apocalypse.
Join the resistance and start creating today!