When I was living in New York City creating preschool content, my business partner and I would do some really off-the-wall things to keep our minds juicy, our creativity flowing and our work authentic.

I loved every minute of it.

One of the most memorable and creatively-freeing experiences we did was belly dancing. Yes, belly dancing. Eight women gathered at our Manhattan loft. We put on colorful, jingly skirts, gave ourselves goddess names and danced to music. I transformed into “Illianna” and left my inhibitions at the door. The idea of doing something new was invigorating and the result breathed life into our work.

So, I developed a list of eight ideas to help you tap into your artistry and create compelling content.

Are you ready? It’s time to release your inner artist!

1. Morning pages. I learned this creative recovery tool from The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron. The Artist Date, below, is also a technique she shares in her book. Take 10 minutes in the morning to write non-stop in a stream-of-consciousness. Use longhand and try to keep up with it for at least three months. Heck, do it forever if you can. Your morning pages are not supposed to sound smart although you might come up with several great ideas. They may actually read more like, “Ugh, I really don’t want to write today. I forgot to call Aunt Betsy for her birthday. I need to do laundry. Blah, blah, blah.” Let it all out. This technique will help unblock your creativity and will get rid of mental clutter.

2. Artist date. Once a week set aside time to fill your creative well. Try visiting a museum, watching the sunset, listening to live music, taking a quiet walk around the neighborhood or planting a flower. This is intended to be a date with you and your inner artist. You are likely saying to yourself, “I don’t have time.” Make time. The benefit of nurturing yourself with an artist date will surprise you.

3. Exercise. Workout regularly. Take a bike ride, go to the gym or enjoy a yoga class.

4. Create a visual board. Tack up images from magazines, Pinterest or from anything that inspires you. Often, visual images can help bring your ideas to life and be the “words” you can’t find in the moment.

5. Stop taking yourself so seriously. Lighten up in meetings, particularly during creative meetings. You and your team might be struggling because everyone is trying way too hard. Have fun, do something crazy.

6. Group brainstorming. Toss around a few ideas with your friends, colleagues and peers. No idea is a bad idea. Share your thoughts without judgment.

7. Listen to music. Yes! Put on your favorite song, listen to a new band or play an oldie but goodie. Don’t forget to shake what your momma gave you – this way you can free your mind and get in a workout!

8. Do an activity you’ve never done before. Take a painting or spin class, go skydiving, cook a new recipe or play the guitar. The activity you chose is irrelevant. The idea is the activity is a new experience for you.

If you are super excited, excellent. If you are hesitant, start slow. You don’t have to belly dance (yet) but it’s important you take time to nurture your creativity and be open to new experiences. You will constantly be tasked with new challenges from your clients, so take this opportunity to get used trying something different.