The best ideas usually appear to us when we have zero time to actually sit with them and actualize them into reality. However, sometimes we get lucky and when they come, we have a chance to properly hold onto them and bring them to life. While life can sometimes get in the way of our best creative ideas, one man is helping others to unplug and realize the potential of their ideas. Swedish global keynote speaker Frederik Haren is the man that not only runs The World of Creativity blog, but he also gives away free stays at a private island in order to encourage people to get their creativity started – I may just have to enlist his private island for the final rewrite of my novel.
Ideas Island is a free – yes, free – private island oasis located close to Stockholm where people can apply for one-week stays in order to tackle whatever creative projects they want to work on. However, if you need more time, you need to convince Haren that it is a project worth him investing more time on. Haren spends several months per year on another private island nearby, and as a result, has created the program as a haven to help nurture other like-minded creatives.
The island is accessible by rowboat, and open to guests every summer. Those winning applicants fortunate enough to get to visit, are allowed to bring friends since the island can house up to 6 guests in one stay. While the whole thing is free, it is highly encouraged to give a donation to a charity of the non-profit’s choosing.
The website states, “We want to help create an environment that helps to bring some great ideas to life. And we all know that truly great ideas come when we are in solitude, when we are relaxed, when we are close to nature and when we feel in tune with the universe.”
Applications are open year-round, however, it is typical for the winners of the current year to be announced in February or March. Also, don’t be discouraged thinking that you need to be some kind of artistic genius in order to qualify, that is simply not the case. The application is very straight forward and is aimed to give a fair opportunity to everyone across the board. Given the cost of running and maintaining the private islands, Haren is definitely giving quite the gift to the creative world.
One former guest, Bastian Döhling of The Insight Bureau, shared, “Ideas Island is great to sit down and think but also to be active and to explore. This place is like oxygen for the mind, it inspires [you] to think, exchange ideas, and to imagine the future.”
Applications are open for summer 2020, so get in there and get your application submitted. I know I will be!
Listen to Haren explain why spending time in solitude on an island is a great way to stay creative.