When you start to notice fatigue of the group when doing creativity work, the best way to support them is to take a break from the thinking activity. It’s likely they’ve hit a bit of a wall, physically and emotionally. The best idea in such a situation is to let people rest. You can encourage them to have a walk, to have some tea, coffee or other refreshments. Enable them to go outside and have some fresh air. If you want them to stay in th group, we suggest a simple exercise called ‘P.E. Lesson’, it’s an abbreviation for physical education. And as you might have guessed it’s based on doing physical exercises all together, which works as a mood and endorphins elevator.
- If you can, take the group outside for the fresh air.
- Stand all in a circle.
- Explain that we will now all participate in a PE lesson and everyone will assume the role of a trainer for a while.
- Invite the participants to each show the group one exercise that you will all do together. The exercises can’t be repeated, everyone comes up with a new one.
- As the group leader, you can start. Show one simple exercise: it could be squats, jumping jacks, some stretching. Keep in mind possible limitations that may occur in the group (disabilities, maybe temporary indispositions).
- After everyone has completed the exercise you have shown, encourage the person standing next to you to show another one.
- The energizer ends when everyone in the group has shown their exercise and everyone has repeated it.
Afterwards you can check in with the group. Are they feeling a bit better now and ready for the next step of creativity work? If not, you can ask what would help them. You can also give them a short speech on how physical activity empowers our brains and mood.
Here is a great TED Talk by Wendy Suzuki, a neuroscientist, who loves to exercise. If you don’t have enough time you can just watch the last 3 minutes of the video:
5′ – 15′
No materials needed
Elevated energy in a group, relaxed body and mind