The Unexpected Ways Yoga Stimulates Creative Thinking

Mary Beth LaRue, who will lead YJ's upcoming Yoga for Creativity course, is here to help you breathe inspiration and bliss into your daily practice and your teaching.
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Mary Beth LaRue, who will lead YJ's upcoming Yoga for Creativity course, is here to help you breathe inspiration and bliss into your daily practice and your teaching.
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We believe everyone is born creative. Let Los Angeles-based yoga teacher, life design coach, and writer Mary Beth LaRue guide you on a physical, spiritual and mental journey to cultivate a life that reflects that. Her upcoming course, Yoga for Creativity, will breathe inspiration and bliss into your practice or teaching. (Sign up now.)

Most of us come to the mat to calm our minds and energize our bodies—not necessarily to find inspiration or come up with our next great idea. But practicing yoga may also stimulate your creative mind in ways you probably never imagined.

In opening up and directing the flow of prana through our bodies, we can unlock the channels of inspiration. Research has shown that many new practitioners report a “flowering of creativity” after taking up meditation, as well as an ability to see things in a different light and pursue new directions in life.

In asana, too, we find these creative possibilities. Learn how your practice can help you tap into your most fertile creative mindset.

3 Ways to Stimulate Creativity with Yoga

Find new perspectives.

Perspective is everything. When we create a sense of space through yoga, we’re able to break free from broken-record thought loops and see things from a more elevated (and less reactionary) vantage point.

During inversions, of course, there’s a literal shift in perspective. But even in gentler poses, our practice can serve as an exercise in releasing limiting thoughts and creating new perspectives. It’s in that open and expansive mindset that creative ideas thrive.

Cultivate stillness to hear your inner voice.

Smartphones and social media have a way of pulling our attention in a million different directions at any given moment. But on the mat, we can let go of distractions, shut out overstimulation, and find stillness within ourselves.

When I’m stuck creatively, the best thing I can do is to use my practice as a time to disconnect from technology. I keep my phone away from the mat during my practice (even if I’m using it for music) and keep a notebook nearby to write down ideas as they arise.

Learn to trust yourself.

There’s no faster or more powerful creativity killer than fear. Yoga can help you to get past the fear of expressing yourself and championing new ideas by teaching you to truly trust yourself.

Through regular practice, we gradually release self-doubt and insecurity. This allows us to come to a place of more pure self-expression—beyond judgment and approval-seeking. When we turn down the volume on our inner critic, we’re free to take creative risks and find joy in expressing our authentic selves.

ABOUT MARY BETH LARUE
Mary Beth LaRue is a Los Angeles–based yoga instructor and life-design coach. She loves riding her bike, scribbling ideas over coffee, and taking long road trips with her family (including her English bulldog, Rosy). Inspired by her teachers Schuyler Grant, Elena Brower, and Kia Miller, LaRue has been teaching yoga for more than eight years, helping others connect to their inner bliss. She co-founded Rock Your Bliss, a yoga-inspired coaching company that helps clients “make shift happen.” Learn more at marybethlarue.com.