creative retreat

yesterday, i spent the day in the city so that i could have some creative space to think through a few new projects. because sometimes sitting in the office just doesn’t produce the innovative ideas that i need!

the city is a magical place for me. i feel alive, and inspired, and free to think new thoughts, and i know the places in the city where i can go for inspiration and creativity. so, when i have a list of projects that need innovative thinking – i head to the places that inspire me every single time.

these are the details of my creative retreat, you too might be in the midst of planning a day alone, or a creative retreat for your team of staff and volunteers, maybe this will inspire some fresh planning or motivation to take a day away from the office!

for the morning, i usually plan activities that will open my mind and prepare me for creative thinking. yesterday, that included listening to music and reading seth godin’s book tribeswhile i rode the train into the city.

also, one of my projects includes creating new training resources for children’s ministry, and i knew that i needed a better idea of what was currently available – so when i first arrived in the city, i spent time wandering around a local christian bookstore making note of what was already available and what still needed to be created.

right before lunch, i attended a noon church service at my most favorite downtownchurch. it’s so different than my tradition, but there’s something about the beautiful architecture and the richness of the service, and the many people who gather to worship in the middle of the workday that does my soul well. god meets me every time i’m there and inspires my spirit, and yesterday was no different.

after lunch, i settled down in my favorite second floor coffee shop overlooking michigan avenue in order to get my ideas out on paper. i wrote, i sketched, i strategized and mapped out several ideas. because of my morning routine, i was open to the mental work of brainstorming in the afternoon.

and, of course, on the way home i rewarded myself by picking up some cupcakes at a brand newbakery. because, every creative day should end with a cupcake.

what does your creative day look like? where do you go to be inspired?


3 responses to this post.

  1. I love this post….There is nothing like time to yourself! I actually have time every morning and afternoon driving to work and back (I have about at hour commute – with traffic). The mornings are more inspiring, the afternoons are spent listening to NPR – my only “real world” connection.


  2. Wow – thanks for sharing that picture, and the post! Is this Chicago?

    When I lived in Boston I had my list of “spots” that included coffee houses, old buildings, the Charles River, and exploring new (safe) parts of town. The street noise became strangely comforting – in college I lived mostly in city-street apartments, and many nights I slept with my window -open- so I could hear the street noise!


  3. My most recent creative spot was Starbucks with a good friend 🙂


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