Daydreaming Alone Isn’t Lonely

I have a confession to make — I couldn’t finish The Creative Habit by Twyla Tharp. It’s one of those books that speaks to some people more than others.

I WILL say that the book definitely spoke to me — in the first half. Beyond that, it seemed to get repetitive for me. It’s wisdom that I’ve read or listened to in dozens of other places.  So, with that confession I’d like to leave a little bit of a disclaimer — the book may end up being one of YOUR favorites if you want to pick it up.

Ms. Tharp drops some absolute gold in the first half of the book that’s worth sharing.

One of my favorite pieces of advice was her daydreaming exercise — to get you used to being alone (without being lonely).

She recommends you sit for one to ten minutes in an empty room and let your mind wander, but pay attention to your thoughts so you can have some company.

She calls it the opposite of meditation, but I disagree. When you’re being mindful of your thoughts and trying to capture gems in the chaos…that’s still meditation.

The practice, though, is an interesting one. You sit and think, daydream, push ideas around, and settle on a goal at the beginning of your practice. It sounds pretty nice, honestly.

I think a key here is to avoid tech distractions in the mean-time. You want to be ALONE with yourself, not lonely or distracted.

Because the act of creation is a lonely one. You should get used to the feeling, and get used to YOUR feelings. This little self-exploration exercise is one of my many go-to activities at the beginning of the day. I’ll share some of my other favorites soon!

And that’s all for today, folks! Happy creating, and I’ll see you next time!

Josh Johnson

I'm a husband and a father to three beautiful kiddos. I'm obsessed with philosophy, creativity, learning, and teaching. I want to make the world a more beautiful place by teaching others to embrace creativity.

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