Thoughts on Creativity
This week is the official first week of the Spring into Action challenge. So fun!
I think creativity comes in many forms, but in its essence, I think, it is an attitude. I think we can live creatively without ever picking up a paintbrush, camera or anything else that might generally come to mind when thinking about creativity.
I think creativity means choosing your path, and making conscious decisions about the way you respond what comes your way. I think it means trying out different ideas to tackle a problem or approach an issue until you find something that works. I think it involves being willing to think outside of the box and to be playful.
I think the opposite of creativity is going through live unconsciously – simply doing the same things over and over, following the norm because it is ‘safe’. Allowing yourself to be be led by expectations, by emotions, or by what is considered normal or desirable by society at large. Going through life without ever stopping to examine it, what you want out of it, what you want to contribute, and how you could get create what you want in your life.
I believe that we all have our own preferred expressions of creativity which come in as many shapes and forms and varieties and subtleties as there are people. For me? I enjoy playing with fabrics, painting furniture, thinking about colors and the way to make a space reflect an owner’s personality, dreams and the things they hold dear. The beauty is that I will never approach this in exactly the same way that another person doing the same thing would and that what I come up with will always be different from another persons’ ideas. In the same way, we all have things that make our hearts sing be it cooking, gardening, managing people, gaming, nurturing, studying, dressing up, acting, painting, housekeeping, nursing, fostering relationships, bringing peace, making coffee – you name it. All of it can done with creativity and each and every expression of creativity in whatever activity is so unique to the person doing it.
I think it can be easy to go into comparison mode when it comes to creativity. I am all for learning and doing things with excellence, but there sometimes can be a sense that only those who are successful at something really are the ones who should be doing it, which I think can be a dangerous thought because it stifles individual expressions of creativity.
I think it’s all too easy to put yourself down in comparison to others and feel that it doesn’t matter what you do, that it’s easier to just go with the flow because when you don’t put anything of yourself into anything, there is less chance of getting hurt. But I think above all else, it is vitally important to honor your own creative spirit and to go in the direction where you feel most drawn to use your creative energy. Because our individual expressions of creativity…they matter.
“Don’t ask yourself what the world needs; ask yourself what makes you come alive. And then go and do that. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.” ~Howard Thurman
Amen to that.