• Advice

Transform anger into creativity in 3 steps

OK, OK, we know that the optimal emotional state for creativity is relaxed and happy, but we can’t be blissed out all the time! So, how do we harness other emotions to do some of the creative grunt work?

Believe it or not, when you’re angry, you’re ripe for a creative idea. Unfortunately, many of us spend the anger destructively rather than constructively.

When you’re angry, your fight or flight instinct kicks in strong and fast, so you’re also more prone to irrational thinking - which is good for creativity.

But how to get past the seething, rage monster within who wants to act on its baser instincts?

Here are three steps to getting your temper under control and putting that explosive thought pattern to good use:

1. Step away from source

Duking it out with your problem will just leave you emotionally exhausted and down for the count.

Find an alternate activity to release your anger. Exercise is a common go-to, but writing, gaming, and puzzling work well for non-sporty types.

2. Focus on your feelings

This is not about distracting yourself from anger, it’s about embracing it.

Use your rage to attack that elliptical machine or crossword puzzle! Your aim here is to get your endorphins buzzing and your mind racing.

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3. Take flight

Once you’ve spent some time in fight mode, allow your thoughts to wander. Don’t force it, but try to let go of the relentlessness of the rage and populate your mind with your goals and dreams.

Go ahead and indulge in a few fantasies if you need to - often they’ll present avenues to solving your problem that you can apply in the real world.

Because you’re angry, your mind is primed to consider doing the unexpected… like fly!

Some of my best ideas have risen out of wrath. Using it to provoke creativity is a win-win because I get to process my feelings and come back to the table with a solution of startling genius.

...Heh, well, at the very least I get a good workout in.

Were any of your great ideas borne of an angry moment? How did you go from apoplectic to constructive?

A new soul and media geek, Laura writes about sustainability, technology, poetry and pop culture. Find her @Pennyscientist or on Freelancers Union.

Laura Murphy A new soul and media geek, Laura writes about community, poetry and pop culture.

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