Cynthia Morris

Cynthia Morris

Writing Coach

Shifting Gears: Transitions for Writers or Artists

Posted 7/15/05 | Updated 7/2/20


10 Rituals for shifting gears between life and creating.

Making the transition from life to creating requires a conscious effort. We may experience 'transition shock' as we go from art to parenting or work. It may take longer than we think to do things. We may find that moving from one task to the next does not flow smoothly. We become grumpy, groggy or otherwise out of sync with our normal flow.

Writers face this need for graceful transition every day. Artists of all disciplines experience the deep place of creativity where the world blurs and melts away. Being in the creative zone is a place of no time, of having a single focus, of transforming ideas into matter. Going into and out of this magical place can be jarring. The demands of life — children, housework, jobs, other people — are much different that the demands of the creative life.

How can writers and artists make the transition smooth and easy? Using ritualized acts help to honor the creative time. Try some of these ten transition methods before or after creating.

Free Writing

Free-writing is always a great way to move from one thing to the next. Limber up your brain and word flow with ten minutes of nonsense writing.


Read a short and inspirational passage from a book about writing or another inspiring text.


Create a mantra or saying that helps you to step into creativity. "I honor my creative time" or "Welcome to the creative zone" or something that suits you will work well.


Music is a great way to train yourself to be in the mode. Try playing the same music when you write or have a handful of inspiring tunes ready. Mozart's music is known to stimulate creativity and brain power.


Take a walk before you write. Get your body moving and let your mind wander. You may pick up some fresh ideas along the way.


Make sure your writing space is ready. When things are in order and ready for you, it is easier to jump into the flow.


Have a glance at the writing you did the day before. Note where your thoughts were and where you can pick them up to continue.


Do some stretching or other physical activity. Prepare your body to sit still for longer periods of time.


Say a prayer or take some time to meditate. Accessing a deeper, sacred space can help you to swim in the creative pool more easily.


Honor the boundaries you have set up around your writing. Make sure that if you have said you are unavailable, that you do not answer the phone or get up to go on errands or other wandering.

Make the transition smooth, easy and respectful of you and your needs. Enjoy your creativity!

©2005 Cynthia Morris. All rights reserved.