Inspiration in Lockdown
We've all been navigating our own way through the practical and emotional challenges of the strange times we're currently living in, but one key tool to maintaining a level mind is recognising inspiration and embracing creativity. A short look from a personal and business view point.
The UK comes towards the end of its ninth consecutive week of lockdown, and although some restrictions have been relaxed, there is no ‘going back to normal’ in sight. It’s inevitable that when we reach ‘normal’ again it will certainly include different habits and routines from those we left behind in March.
With regular life on hold, to begin with some like me may have experienced a brand new concept - spare time! An alien idea to anyone running a business, or probably anyone just living in London in 2020. From a life at speed, particularly for those of us working in the events and performance industry preparing for the next before performing the one before, suddenly there was an opportunity to get ahead for once. Time to clear the backlog of tasks without anything except Covid-19 update emails coming in. Either those or, even more worrying for us at the time, emails with the subject line “Event Cancelled”.
After the first few weeks of getting used to staying at home and dealing with the withdrawal symptoms from the stage (i.e. normal life to other people) we had cleared up conversations with clients about upcoming events and ticked-off the majority of the to-do list. So then came the period of ‘time wasting’. I’m sure many people relate to and have experienced or continue to experience the sense of lack of purpose and motivation, loss of direction and general feeling of devastation at the current state of the world. It’s no secret that everyone is struggling - this situation continues to challenge every one of us every day.
But we are still going, and like most people have discovered, at one moment or another, that inspiration will strike. From cooking to gardening, sewing to den building, whatever it is, in the words of a renowned director and inspiration of mine -
“Inspiration greets us like an old friend and lights the path”. L. W. Heimgartner
Inspiration to create, and then use creativity to process, to understand and to express. It’s fairly straight forward for me to tap into from the dance and creative background I live and work in, but it turns out we’re all capable of it and we’ve all been doing it. Walk down the street and see how we’ve been expressing our gratitude to the NHS through the inspired idea to create rainbows of all shapes and sizes. Very simple. And where at first we were just about coping, when inspiration strikes we find life starts to go again and time wasting becomes more like living. When we have a great idea, we find our purpose again and our motivation to make it happen, our freedom of expression, clarity of understanding and fulfilment at what we have created.
When HIRE-A-DANCER went from pause mode to GO, it was like a whole explosion of energy. From the initial thought of sitting it out, to the inspiration of how we would evolve and adapt to the new situation, we rediscovered our purpose and identity, and I know that applies to many people in many walks of life. It may be quite different from business as usual, but despite the terrible situation, there is hope when creating something.
We have seen it manifest across the country in all sorts of ways, from businesses adapting innovatively, to football club owners inspired to open up hotels to NHS staff, to pubs becoming delis - we might even claim that never has there been such a surge of inspiration and creativity amongst the population. And what a joy that is!
So whilst we struggle on into the unknown and tentatively navigate the way forward, let’s continue to look for inspiration around us and work positively on our creative projects. We won’t necessarily all be there yet and definitely won’t be there at the same time, but when your inspiration strikes, I urge you to follow it through and hope that you find a purposeful relief there.
HIRE-A-DANCER.COM are now running online Dancercise sessions 4 times a week to help people at home to get active and spread a smile. In the time you would normally take for your daily coffee break, dance to Spice Girls, Greased Lightning, Michael Jackson or Let It Go from Frozen. The sessions are 15 minutes long and are run on video conference call by HIRE-A-DANCER.COM's professional dancers - a cross between a dance routine and an exercise class. Stretch and get moving but no previous dance experience required, family friendly and completely accessible and open to all. A great way to take care of your mental well-being. Contact us for further details – firstname.lastname@example.org / @hireadancer