By Alyssa Gregory

9 Inspirational Things to Do During Downtime

By Alyssa Gregory

doodleWhat do you do when you go through slow periods with work? Do you review your goals, organize your files or spruce up your web site? Or do you take a step back from work and enjoy a much needed break?

In the very rare moments when I see a slow down in my day-to-day schedule, I try to use the time to inspire creativity, get myself thinking in a different way or learn something new. Here is a list of inspiring activities you can try the next time work slows or when you just need a break from the daily grind.

  1. Doodle – I’m always surprised by what some quality doodling will do for idea generation. Freeform scribbling always seems to get me thinking and developing new ideas.
  2. Read a favorite book – Whether your preference is fiction, autobiographies, poetry or another genre, reading something you enjoy gives your subconscious a chance to stray unrestricted.
  3. Play with the kids – Have you watched your kids play lately? Kids have amazing creativity and imagination that’s so natural. It’s hard not to be inspired!
  4. Go to a museum – Museums, art shows, musical events and other activities that center around creativity are a fail safe way to get inspired and develop new ideas.
  5. Listen to music – Music can be a great accompaniment to just about anything. A good song can psych you up, make you think and get you inspired.
  6. Surf the Web – Visiting sites you’ve never seen before can quickly build up a stockpile of ideas and inspirations. StumbleUpon is a great tool that makes mindless surfing as easy as a click.
  7. Take a walk – Whether you’re walking outside, taking laps in your kitchen or sweating it out on the treadmill, walking is a great no-brainer activity that gives your mind a chance to absorb inspiration.
  8. Flip through your photos – I have a couple of digital cameras and don’t download the photos to my computer nearly often enough, so I always have a stockpile of photos in all categories to peruse for ideas.
  9. Watch a home-improvement show – Home-improvement shows, especially the ones that show colorful designs or creative layouts, can be great ways to find inspiration.

For me, the less I plan my downtime and the more I just go with the flow (very hard for me!), the more inspiration I find. As long as you can let your mind relax, you may be surprised by the ideas that get sparked. If you like to keep your downtime activities work-focused, here are a few other ideas: Bored? 7 Ways Turn Downtime into Uptime.


What’s you favorite thing to do during downtime?

Image credit: ba1969

  • Zoe Feast

    Downtime is so crucial to keeping those creative juices flowing.

    Here are some of the things I like to do.

    Get messy with a box of Chalk pastels
    Get even messier and create something out of papier mache…check out this Crocodile head
    Lets not forget the mud and dirt a fabulous afternoon in the garden can afford.
    And finally trash a perfectly clean kitchen and whip up some yummy cakes

  • Newkidonblock

    Hi Alyssa:

    I love to go for walks in parks, Riverdale Farm, The Beach(s)?…any area where nature abounds. Nature, for me is one of the greatest sources of inspiration for me.

    Thanks for your post.

  • Nina Krimly

    Wonderful read, very helpful.
    Thanks for posting :D


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