The current fad in creativity is to bow to the undisciplined lifestyles of Vata or the Vata deranged and give the go-ahead to work late into the night. It’s sold as something exotic and worn as a badge of honor. Vatas, creatives, and others claim and truly believe their best work is done post-midnight. Short term, this is true as the mind catches hold of the planetary energy of Pitta creating strong focus and maximum discernment.
The doshas, present in your mind and body, are also present collectively on the planet. Between the hours of 10 pm and 2 am, the energy of Pitta is predominant. Pitta gives focus, discernment, and the ability to complete. This energy, however, also creates a hypermetabolic state and when the body is at rest, the body uses it to heal and digest. During Pitta hours food is digested, the disease is fought, and stress is released.
Imagine you turn into a night owl for one year. You stay up until just midnight. You miss 2 hours/night or 730 hours/year of exposure to maximum healing. The long-term result is low immunity, irritability, stress, hormonal imbalance, and weight gain. It presents as fuzzy thinking, impaired memory, and a struggle to efficiently relate to others. It looks like fatigue.
There is a better way to live and work to maximize the natural energies of the doshas, thereby maximizing creativity at work. Below is the most efficient routine to boost creativity and health beginning with the problem area of staying up late. Do know that if you are a night owl you are to slowly adjust your bedtime backward in 15-minute increments over the course of a few weeks to make a smooth adjustment.
The energy of Kapha is on the planet between 6 pm and 10 pm. This is a heavier and denser time where memory is strong and thoughts are grounded. Before you go to bed, make a list of what tasks must be accomplished the next day. Release the list from your consciousness with confidence knowing your day to come will complete the tasks.
Be in bed at 10 pm to capture Pitta. This is a nice time to read something inspirational related to work motivation. Perhaps you can study in a casual way. Just rest and relax and let the body begin to unwind. Lights are to be low. No electronics including your phone are allowed in the bedroom.
Turn your lights out by 10:30 and no later than 11 pm. Before you go to sleep, tell yourself you will utilize your dream state for creativity and when you wake up, you will remember your dreams. Vata arises around 2 am and we actively dream as thoughts move more quickly. This is a highly creative time for the subconscious.
The yogic way is to arise one hour before sunrise to do a personal spiritual practice. Plan to arise at 5 am, drink a glass of water, brush your teeth, and splash cool water on your face. Move your body through yoga poses or enjoy a brief and casual walk in the elements. Meditate for 10 – 30 minutes and then journal for 10 minutes of no specific nature. You will be shocked by the creative thoughts pouring forth.
The Human Capacity to Work and Create
Today’s world is convincing you to work 24/7. You can’t do it and the results of this lifestyle are endemic depression, weight gain, and stress. Each human can only efficiently work and create about 6 hours a day regardless of their title and perceived level of responsibility. You can stretch this to 8 if you follow the routine above and have a healthy diet. Plan your day as follows:
8 – 10 am: Complete start to finish one major task.
10 am: Check email, text, and phone. Clear out all quick items and put larger items on a list to complete at another time.
12 pm: Lunch, walk, and relax.
1 pm – 3 pm: Complete start to finish one major task.
3 pm: Check email, text, and phone. Clear out all quick items and put larger items on a list to complete at another time.
5 pm: Go home. Drive-in silence and use the silence to process your day and allow creative solutions to gently flow.