Does a Creative Impulse Follow a Plan or Purpose?

creative impulse, pinnacle, jagged out cropping at sunrise


A creative impulse is intoxicating. The rush of inspiration you feel in your mind and body lights you up, offering a body buzz that sends endorphins sky high. It’s dreamy, exciting and fun all at the same time.


When the initial feeling passes and your body settles down, sometimes the mind can come barging in with an agenda of it’s own. It’s not trying to ruin your fun on purpose, it sometimes just let’s the ego drive the bus instead of the heart.


So when you have an inspiring creative impulse, it’s common for the mind to start poking around, asking you…


  • How are you going to make this happen?
  • Are you sure you have time for this?
  • How does it fit into the – moment, day, week plan?
  • What needs to shift to make room for something new?
  • Where will it lead, and do I want to follow it?


Soon the focus moves from the firey crackle of creative inspiration, to the list of endless unanswerable questions –  while the glow of sudden insight slowly fades away.


moment water drip


Forcing, Allowing and Fully Owning the Moment


A creative impulse does not need to have a plan beyond following the impulse with openness and non-judgmental curiosity. Maybe it takes you off track from where you were expecting to travel along the plan pipeline, but the plan will always be there to come back to as a grounding tool.


Then you can use it to reevaluate what you see and feel, to sense if you are still in alignment with the plan you’ve created, with the path you THINK you want.


So what if you veer off track for 5 minutes or 5 weeks? Did you miss something by doing it differently than you planned? Or is a well-crafted plan actually squashing your creative impulses into dust because the mind considers “rushes” of guidance a distraction from staying on course? In response to this inner friction, it’s easy to simply ignore the gentle nudges you feel instead of honoring them because you feel torn and unsure.


However, each creative impulse takes you closer to a purpose you can’t know until you follow it. And isn’t that way more fun? If you want to add more creativity and play to your life, commit to walking off trail, ditching the plan and taking the long, windy road not just for the sake of it, but when the creative impulse invites you along to dance. It’s the open door you’ve been hoping for, but you have to play when it comes a-callin’, not only when it fits into your neat and tidy timeline.


When you can listen and entertain the invitation from your creative spirit to play, you are living a true creative purpose – your purpose. It’s way more natural and intoxicating than any plan you believe you can craft in your mind to replace or override the creative impulses of your heart. The impulses also expand and contract with life, allowing you to refresh the direction of your purpose in ways that are empowering instead of limiting.


How do you connect with and follow your creative impulses? Or do you always act according to a plan?


If you want to learn how to shift some of your approaches or ideas about connecting with your creative purpose, I would love to talk with you.


Photo Credit: Geograph, Extremopenguin