3 Secrets to Connect With Your Creativity & Improve Productivity

This is a guest post from Kylie Saunder of kyliesaunder.com.

3 Secrets to connect with your creativity and improve productivity - Zest e-Biz

You’re taking a break from your desk and have “escaped” for a coffee at your local café.

As you sit down at the communal table you realise that you’re surrounded! You try to ignore them as you figure out whether to order the plain or fruit toast with your coffee.

But your curiosity becomes too strong. You look up from the menu and notice what’s going on around you. You feel like you’re the only one not hunched over, typing fast, listening to music.

You tell yourself:

  this coffee outing is a break away from my desk, an opportunity to get focused and relax a bit… to invite in new thoughts and creativity.

As you sip your coffee and leaf through the newspaper you’re wishing you could tap into their ‘secret formula for being creative, productive and focused’.

But here’s the thing – you’re just as creative as they are!

New concepts and ideas flow in and out of your consciousness thousands of times a day. Often at the most random moments. Except you want them to “arrive on demand” as you sit in front of the computer screen. After all, you’ve scheduled this time to write a blog post, work on a proposal or develop a business idea!

Here are 3 secrets your ‘café friends’ are doing that you can incorporate into your work day to harness your creative energy.

1. Prepare by Capturing and Organising Your Ideas Regularly

That old saying “prior preparation prevents poor performance” is your first step to harnessing your creativity. Preparing your ideas into bullet points, short paragraphs and even mind-maps will give you direction and focus.

Here are some preparatory tools to start incorporating into your daily routine.

Use technology to capture your ideas:

    • Evernote is an App that many bloggers, writers and entrepreneurs use. It helps you jot down your ideas, projects and musings and syncs them across your tablet, phone and computer. Waiting for a taxi and have a flash of inspiration? Pull out your phone, open the App and record it!
    • Voice notes. Most phones now have the ability to record your voice. And even though it may feel weird at first to listen to your own voice, it’s an invaluable tool. Walking your dog at the beach and don’t have a chance to stop and type your ideas into your phone? Open your voice memos, hit record and capture your ‘aha moment’.
    • Post-it notes. Good old fashioned technology. You’ve probably got a stack of these on you desk with to-do lists and reminders, but they’re also useful in the car, next to your bed, in your garden shed and even in the bathroom.
    • Pen and paper. Failing all else, invest in a great notepad (Moleskine have a great range) to capture your ideas and dreams. The simple act of writing your ideas in a journal can help unleash your creative mojo!

2. Create ‘Space’ by Scheduling Time Out

Scheduling regular ‘creative time’ will help you feel a sense of lightness, energy and optimism.

Creative time doesn’t mean that you have to sign up for life drawing classes or learn how to crochet! It can be as simple as getting away from your computer screen and sitting outside under a tree for 15 minutes a day.

As you walk in the garden, visit an art gallery or try out a new style of yoga, it’s giving your mind the space it needs to open up to new ideas.

3. Stop Comparing Yourself to Others

Your creative process is totally different to everyone else’s – so it’s time to stop comparing yourself to your ‘café friends’.

Looking at and worrying about the outward appearance of your peers or colleagues’ lives is a waste of your energy and time.

When you find yourself comparing yourself to others, it’s a “red flag” to shift your focus. Close down your social media accounts, shut down your emails, turn off your phone, and revisit secret #2.

Now you know the ‘secrets’, it’s time to create and develop your ideas. Gather your ideas together, stay focused, and only then, go and sit in front of your computer screen.


Leave a comment below telling us which secret you plan to commit to doing (i.e. needs the most work for you) to become more creative.


Kylie SaunderKylie Saunder is an online marketer, content creator and blogs about life and creativity. She writes creative copy for her clients that engages and inspires their audience, while infusing it with their passion, knowledge and personality.

Kylie also provides a “blog rescue service” perfect for people who need direction and focus with their blog writing.


Check out her blog kyliesaunder.com and connect on twitter, google+ and linkedin.


How to Create a 90 Day Action Plan – Part 1

As we approach the end of the year, it’s easy to give up on those New Year’s Resolutions, or the goals we thought about during the year – I know I catch myself thinking that January is around the corner and I’ll be fresh then and more motivated to tackle my goals.

However, there are still three months left of the year, and Activate28 proposes that for many people, three months (or 90 days) is the perfect amount of time to dedicate towards achieving goals. Businesses operate in four quarters, many schools revolve around four terms, and even nature conforms to four seasons.

Planning goals is great, but only if followed up by action. Action makes it real. Action takes it out of our heads and into the world. Action is the fulfillment of planning.

activate28 provides just the recipe for action, the 90 Day Action Plan! I commenced a 90 Day Action Plan in April this year and reaped amazing results.

Over the next few blogs I’ll run through a three part series covering the seven steps involved.


Step 1: Brainstorm All Potential Goals

Get all the ideas floating in your head onto paper. Did you know that all those goal ideas floating around in your head are draining your brain? What you need to do is a brain dump! Set a timer for 10 minutes and write down all the goals you can think of.

I used a mind map to get everything out of my head capturing them on paper.


Step 2: Choose Three Goals to Focus On

Write affirmations for these three (yes, just three!) goals.

For each goal, imagine where you’d like to be in the next 90 days. Visualise yourself there: How does that feel? What does it look like? Write those ideas down. Then synthesise them into a single sentence.

Next, start playing with the wording. Make sure the sentence is positive (‘is’, not ‘isn’t’), in the present tense (‘is happening’ rather than ‘will happen’) and has an emotional connection for you. Keep playing with the words until it feels right. Less is more – keep it simple. Aim for oomph!

Some examples:

[Starting a business]: “People believe in me and my business” or “My bank account welcomes money from new clients”

[Finding a new place to live]: “My house is my sanctuary” or “Phew! I’m glad to have moved”

[Zest e-Biz example]: “I have valuable products that draw amazing peeps to Zest e-Biz!”


Step 3: Choose a Virtue That Will Support You

What positive character trait will help you through the next 90 days? For example, determination? Flexibility? Openness? Assertiveness? Creativity? Choosing one value to focus on gets you through the tough times and connects you to your heart.

Zest e-Biz example:

Discipline – “My life and business is set-up so it doesn’t stall when my baby arrives.”

In the 3 months from April 1st to June 24th I was finishing full-time work, starting maternity leave and attempting to structure my part-time business so that it would look after itself while I took 6 weeks out completely after the birth of my first child. Hence I felt I needed discipline to stay on track to achieve the goals I wanted to manifest.


Look out for the next posts in this series:

Creating a 90 Day Action Plan – PART 2

Step 4: Break Your Goals into Smaller Steps

Step 5: Put Post-it Notes on a Timeline


Creating a 90 Day Action Plan – PART 3

Step 6: Take Regular Action

Step 7: Pause for Applause


Thanks to Erin from Activate28 for the letting me blog in detail about the 7 Steps of the 90 Day Action Plan.  If you’re interested in joining the next 90 Day Action plan you may be able to join the latest one which commenced on 30th Sept if you’re quick! CLICK HERE for more info, or to ask Erin what dates the 90 Day Action plan will be run in 2013.

What Are You Manifesting?

Exciting news! My book is coming out soon. It’s called…

Adventures in Manifesting: Success & Spirituality.

What are you manifesting - ebook - Zest e-bizCo-authored with bestselling authors from The Secret Dr. Fred Alan Wolf and Dr. Joe Vitale, bestselling authors Brian Tracy and Dr. Marilyn Joyce and many more.

How my Book Came About:

I first “met” Sarah Prout online after reading her inspiring book The Power of Influence earlier this year. I joined the Adventures in Manifesting course and found myself part of an amazing community, encouraged and supported by Sean Patrick Simpson and Sarah Prout to dare to dream and manifest what we each individually desired most.Sean and Sarah invited me to write a chapter in the first Adventures in Manifesting book series and I have not looked back. Such an amazing experience to get your thoughts in print so they can be shared with the world!

The last 12 months have been an exciting time in which I am grateful for a huge number of things including co-authoring Adventures in Manifesting: Success & Spirituality.

My partner and I have now being living together a year in sunny Karratha where we have made a home that functions as an Art Studio, Home Office, Bike Workshop, Go-Kart Workshop and Garage for cars, boat and go-kart trailer. We also went to Europe for 3 weeks, which was a fantastic trip!

I sold a painting at the 2011 Annual Cossack Art Award, and can’t wait to start another painting for next year.

Work (i.e. my day job) has stepped up a notch with the start-up of the gas processing facility I work on, just around the corner. I was also fortunate enough to co-ordinate and MC the first Women of Woodside EXPO up here in Karratha – “Celebrating 30 years of Women at Woodside in the Pilbara” in which we displayed over 70 profiles in the community.

I also launched Zest e-Biz Coaching officially only last week and already have one client signed up! See my COACHING page for more info.

Adventures in Manifesting – The Book:

For more info on my book, check it out under my BOOKS page.

The Adventures in Manifesting Online Hub:

www.WhatAreYouManifesting.com is the online hub for the book. Check out the Authors’ bios. See the other books and join the Adventures in Manifesting community too.

Upcoming Manifestations:

Soon I’ll have pre-release copies of my book available – signed by me. You can order them by emailing zestebiz@gmail.com.

In the coming 12months I also plan to manifest…

–     More amazing Zest e-Biz coaching clients

–  Guest speaking opportunities on leadership and business excellence

–     Another book

–     An investment property

–     Sufficient savings & passive income to go travelling and volunteer in 2013

What Are You Manifesting?

I’d love to hear from you. What are you Manifesting? It’s a powerful question and one I recommend asking yourself and those around you. In fact, you may be pleasantly surprised by the ways this question will initiate manifestations in your life.

Let me know in the comments below, what do YOU want to manifest in the next 12 months?