Many of us see creativity as something that’s explored and put to use only when we specifically sit down to make art.
The times we paint, write, photograph, sew, sculpt and sing in a predetermined place and time.
More than this, we feel we need the right equipment, the perfect idea, an uninterrupted block of at least six hours, to be in the right mindset and for at least seven planets to be in alignment, for this art making to happen.
Because these conditions never seem to present themselves, we think as if our creativity has been shoved to the back of our wardrobe, like the best party outfit of someone who never actually goes to parties anymore.
And we carry on our daily life, in our daily clothes, barely giving that party outfit any thought at all.
Which just amplifies the whole problem.
The less we wear the fancy outfit, the more we feel we need an occasion grand and important and perfect enough to justify getting it out of the wardrobe.
And then, if we ever do rescue it from behind the comfortable day wear – which is increasingly unlikely – we realise that in the six months or six years since we last wore it, our bodies, and our tastes, have changed somewhat, and it doesn’t fit or feel anything like we hoped it would.
The whole party outfit metaphor is broken.
It doesn’t serve our creativity at all, and keeps it marginalised, neglected and ignored.
We need a new metaphor that reflects the part creativity actually does play in your life.
Let’s try this one –
Your creativity is your blood.
It’s a fundamental, inseparable part of you that travels with you wherever you go.
To give you an idea of how inseparable, imagine adding a few drops of blood to a glass of water, and gently stirring. What would happen? Would the blood stay on the surface? Sink to the bottom? Separate and stick around the edges?
No, it would intermingle with the water molecules and tint the entire liquid a shade of red. There would be no easy way you could then remove the blood from the water again. They are one.
Exactly like your creativity and your life.
Creativity is the blood in the river of your daily life.
Once you start to accept this, it makes all aspects of being a creative artist far easier.
You open your arms and your mind to the possibility of a new idea coming to you at any moment, in any place.
You give your creativity permission to bubble away in the background constantly, to percolate the ideas you do have as well as produce those new ones.
You start to give your creativity a greater priority, and set aside time every day to devote to bringing it forth, hearing its voice, giving it form, even if just 10 or 15 minutes.
Ultimately, you realise that what you thought was something for special (and increasingly infrequent) occasions is in fact deeply embedded in every moment of your day to day living.
Give up the idea of your creativity being the forgotten party outfit. Give up waiting for a party invitation that will never come.
Change your perspective. Make a new choice.
Creativity is your blood. Let it flow.
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