Artists create unique masterpieces and, although they sometimes get stuck or experience moments when they’re uninspired, they have learned ways to expand their creativity and keep their art fresh. Song writers often change the structure of a new song, possibly starting with the chorus or even eliminating the chorus altogether. Painters may change their environment to express something fresh about an old idea. Musicians discover new things about a score and create inspired performances of works they have performed time after time by studying the score as if they have never seen it before. Guitarist Mick Taylor said, “I do…keep things sounding fresh. Sometimes just changing the running order of the show is a good idea.” These artists don’t blindly follow convention but instead take the time to look at things with new eyes, unspoiled by previous experiences.

You have to be displaced from what’s comfortable and routine,
and then you get to see things with fresh eyes, with new eyes.
~ Amy Tan, American writer best known for The Joy Luck Club

We’re into the holiday season, and unless you can mix things up a little, it’s easy to fall into a tradition rut. Are you going into the season offering a sense of “wow—that was unexpected” or has it become a yearly period when you settle into a comfortable chair and watch the time pass conveniently and predictably? Do you go back to your daily life uninspired or tired? How can you keep traditions and still keep things fresh?

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