The power of creativity is to bring something new into being. It is to imagine, to let your soul run free and open it up to the possibility of pleasure.
When we’re creative, we can connect with a part of ourselves that we’re rarely allowed the time and space to nurture. This creativity can take multiple shapes and forms. It can look like painting, baking, craft, writing, creating music, dancing, exploring movement, sure — but it can also be about problem-solving. It can be that “aha” moment when you work your way around a challenging puzzle. It can involve approaching something from a new angle. Creative thinking isn’t limited to the artistic field.
There are many reasons to pursue creativity in daily life.
Being creative lets the background noise fade away. Have you ever felt your mind is too busy, too loud? Creative pursuits often encourage a singular focus that can prompt that background noise or mental chatter to fade away. Creative pursuits can therefore leave you feeling more centred, more in control of the world and less like things are spiralling out of control.
Being creative expands time. When you’re truly engaged in a creative pursuit, you can achieve a state of flow where your focus is completely absorbed in your project. This has the power to expand time, with minutes having the capacity to feel like hours as you truly immerse yourself in another world.
Being creative assists your problem-solving skills. On a more practical level, being creative involves problem-solving. Whether you’re painting, writing, baking, dancing or sewing, being creative will see you face challenges that you need to overcome in order to complete your project. Creativity pushes us to analyse a situation then decide upon the best course of action, putting the problem-solving skills we must utilise in day-to-day life into action — yet the risk is minimal. Creativity does not have a right or wrong answer; it’s about what feels right and works for you.
Being creative supports your emotional intelligence. Creativity can support you emotionally by allowing a safe form of expression. Every creative pursuit is an opportunity for you to explore your feelings — feelings which can sometimes be challenging to put into words or share openly with a friend or loved one. The canvas, the kitchen, the pages of a book — these are all safe spaces where you can explore your emotions and give them the time and space you need in order to develop and grow.
Being creative utilises mental skill. It can increase a sense of focus, develop those problem-solving skills we mentioned earlier, improve hand-eye coordination, feed your soul and allow you mental access to a more meditative state.
Yes, there are many benefits to pursuing creativity, yet how often do we make time for this in our lives? We know the importance of prioritising our relationships, our professional careers and our physical and mental health, but when you wake in the morning, do you place creativity on your to-do list? Is creativity given time to breathe in your life?
Hesitation to create
Many of us feel an innate hesitation when it comes to this sort of pursuit, almost as if being creative is too indulgent. “I’m not creative” — the phrase has often crossed the lips as an excuse when we’re faced with a paintbrush, or a needle and thread, or a musical instrument.
The fear of creativity is present within many of us, yet creativity is for everyone. We all have the power to be creative. We all have the same components in our brains where creativity is developed. No one is born with a paintbrush in his or her hand. Most of our creative limitations come from within, almost as if we’re too scared to take that leap, or as if perhaps we can’t enjoy creativity unless we are professionally creative and practise that skill every day.
But there are no rules when it comes to this pursuit. And, as with most things in life, the more you practise, the easier it will become.
Creativity: a challenge
Open your diary and schedule some time into your life for creativity. Carve out a pocket of time during the next few weeks and set boundaries around it as you would a business meeting — that means no interruptions and no distractions. Then utilise this time to get lost in a creative pursuit that will nourish your soul.
If you’re unsure where to start, the pages of this book are full of ideas and challenges designed to inspire that sense of timelessness within your brain. Yet creative inspiration is everywhere. If you’re unsure where to begin, perhaps try:
Stepping outside: By moving our bodies, we encourage a sense of creativity. We breathe more deeply, release endorphins and reach a greater state of physical and mental health, all of which can then make accessing our creativity less challenging. Begin your creative process with some light exercise or connecting with your local environment and you may find that barrier to entry lessens.
Letting music be your guide: Music can impact our mood and emotions. Search for a song that you feel. Find the lyrics that speak to your soul and the beat that speaks to your body, then let it inspire you as you create, no matter what form that creativity takes.
Experimenting: Don’t define yourself as a non-creative type. Release the shackles of negative self-talk that places limitations on your creativity. Repeat some positive affirmations around the subject of creativity and try new things, new mediums, new ideas.
Yes, creativity is for everyone — it’s up to you to embrace it.
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