What does being creative mean to you?
Do you think that you need to know how to draw, dance or play a musical instrument? Do you feel intimidated by artists who are way more advanced than you?
Maybe the first conversation should be about why being creative is important?
Creativity is not so much about becoming accomplished artists, as it is about expressing what’s inside. Expressing thoughts and feelings through art is important throughout our whole lives.
In our world, creativity, like spirituality and compassion, are often trivialized, pushed to the side. Important things are discussed on TV and in the news – politics, finance, the minute-by-minute activity of the stock market. Nobody is on television arguing about creativity, unless some dodo actor or politician has said something dumb about something he knows nothing about. Of course THAT never happens. 😉
People tell me all the time they are too busy to be creative, they are working too hard, they don’t have time, their wives or husbands laugh at them. The first thing I want to say is that creativity isn’t an interruption from the work, it is, for many of us, the work itself. I believe the creative spark is a gift given to each one of us but always in different ways. Creativity is unique among all the species and animals in the world. Some even go so far as to say that the only thing human beings have to fear is wasting their creative spark, failing to use it in pursuit of power or money.
We spend more time worrying about money in our world than almost anything, yet I have come to believe creativity is our soul, our identity, our struggle to make sense of our world and to find and shape the beauty and light all around us, this is our news, our politics, our passion.
Creativity is transformative, it frees our inner spirits, defines our souls, gives us purpose, lifts our hearts, is our language to the other struggling and yearning spirits of our world. Creativity is the purest form of passion, it deserves our attention and respect, it ought not to be pushed to the edge of life, out of sight, beyond reach, until it fades out of sight like a sailboat drifting on the horizon.
Creativity is important. It is the greatest antidote to fear and despair, it helps to heal our hearts and infuses us with life. Over the past year, I have seen fear all the time, choking off creativity, sending out little voices that say, “you can’t do this,” it is no good,” “people will laugh at you.” Creativity chokes off those voices, chases them away, it is much more powerful than fear.
So while all that is well and good, how does the person (you?) become more creative? If you can’t draw, dance, sing, or paint? No worries! Creativity goes so far past that. I am sure you can find an idea or two from this long list.
- Take a walk and look for something interesting.
- Open a dictionary and find a new word. Use it in a sentence. Find places to use it all day.
- Create the dumbest idea you can.
- Create an idea that will get you fired. Be silly with it.
- Read a different newspaper.
- What is the most bizarre idea you can come up with?
- Finger-paint with your eyes closed. Then open them and try to find a shape. Think of it like watching the clouds and seeing a cat.
- Watch the clouds.
- Take a different route to work.
- Make up and sing a song about a problem you are having while taking a shower.
- Listen to a different radio station.
- Ask the most creative person you know why they are creative.
- Ask the least creative person you know why they are not creative.
- Make up new words that describe a problem. If you are feeling anxious, call it a rainbow cloud day or something that makes you feel calmer.
- Go for a drive with the windows open. Listen and smell as you drive.
- How can a bee help you get ready to go out on a date?
- A book about your life woudl be called?
- Take some time to write. It doesn’t need to be perfect. It is for you only.
- Plan a magical trip with no boundaries of money, time, or ability to travel. Where would you go? With?
- Look at a day in your life. What woudl your life be like if you did everything opposite to what you do now?
- Daydream about anything! Not Bon Jovi though. He’s mine. 😉
- Draw abstract symbols.
- Think out loud.
- Plan a dinner with someone alive or dead who you would LOVE to talk to. What would you want to ask? What woudl you hoped they would talk about?
- How would Abraham Lincoln fit in to your family?
- Imagine you are at a beach in Tahiti. How could talking with locals help you to be more creative?
- Draw a mythical creature. No one knows what it looks like so your drawing is PERFECT! 😉
- Build a sandcastle.
- Draw in the sand fairly close to the water. Try something different each time before the water washes it away.
- Eat spaghetti with chopsticks.
- Dance around the house.
- What if you were the richest person on earth? How will the money help you?
- If you could have three wishes, what would they be?
- Wear purple underwear for inspiration.
- Write a letter to your subconscious mind.
- Imagine you are on Oprah. How will you make the world a better place?
- Take some dance lessons.
- Go out and do a few acts of kindness. Be creative.
- Talk to a stranger.
- Keep a written record of all your ideas. Review them weekly. Can you pick one to try?
- Write a poem.
- If your life was a garden, what areas woudl you water and which ones could use a bit of weeding?
- Change your daily routine a bit.
- Have a backwards day.
- Become a dreamer and create fun fantasies.
- Become a realist and imagine your fantasies into workable ideas.
- Complete “How can I _____?” Then change the words five different ways.
- Suspend logic and think freely and fluidly.
- What have you learned from your failures? What have you discovered that you didn’t set out to discover?
- Hang out with people from diverse backgrounds.
- Create a funny story.
- Make analogies between a problem and nature.
- Make a mashed potato sculpture. I dare you to display it. 😉
- Sit outside and count the stars. Imagine living on one.
- Cut out interesting magazine and newspaper pictures. Then arrange and paste them on a board making a collage that represents what you want from your life.
Most of all? Just have fun. Let your mind go.
Have a great week!