About ten years ago if you would have asked me if I had a single creative bone in my body, I would have told you no. Every attempt at being creative had always failed for me, even though I had hinged so much hope on the dream of someday being the next Martha Stewart. Looking back on it, I think there were two things that were holding me back from my creative dreams. The first was that I identified myself as not being creative and fulfilled my own self-prophecy. The second was that I didn’t have anyone to show me how to find that part of me anymore since I had children. Did that childlike wonder for creation die when I started my new role as a mom? That’s how I often felt especially in the weary trenches of motherhood.
Here is the thing that I wished someone would have told me about finding my creativity again… There are SO many creative avenues and it has nothing to do with being crafty or completing Pinterest-worthy projects. Being able to throw down in your craft room with a glue gun is great, but it’s not the only example of being creative. In fact, if you look at your typical day, I am sure that most of us find pleasure in tasks where we have let our own creativity show through on even the most basic of household routines.
I’d love to share with you what I think the true secret to being a creative person and getting your creativity back when you feel you have lost it. To me, Leo Burnett put it best when he said, “Curiosity about life in all of its aspects, I think, is still the secret of great creative people.” You see, creative people are not only curious about life, but they explore that inner curiosity by exploring new challenges and taking risks to try new things that help further their own creativity. I will take that idea of curiosity just one step further and say that they explore those curiosities and then connect them with their passions in unique ways.
Over this decade my life has undergone a major transformation and one of those things has been finally identifying myself as a creative and finding outlets and people who have an equal appreciation for the creativity in me.
The thing that I realized about myself is that there is never a time when my brain is quiet and not thinking creatively, but I oftentimes do not acknowledge it. I constantly am looking for ways to demonstrate creativity and expand my own passions to create. These can be as mundane as how you love making your bed in the morning (I totally love doing this!) or as grand as creating a wreath for your front door.
Here is how I demonstrated creativity today:
- I got up early and wrote a blog post about a new dish we tried together and how we opened up our dinner table to others. I love inspiring other people to try new things with my words and storytelling.
- I went to dance class this morning as a treat to myself after I finished my post. I love adding my own creative spin to the movements and learning new dance sequences. I also love that my childhood passion for dancing is now back in my life as an adult.
- While I got my morning chores done, I listened to a podcast about another creative entrepreneur and how she got her business off the ground. It inspired me to think more creatively about how I could approach my own business and sparked new ideas for things I could do in my daily life to run a more successful business.
- I set aside some time to knit this afternoon. I’m working on a chemo cap for a special lady in town who was recently diagnosed with cancer. I’m proud that I can share my creativity to serve others. Knitting is also a task I prefer to do in solitude that gives my brain time to daydream. Some of my most creative ideas come from moments like these. I guess I never thought about the twofold creative process until today!
- I redecorated a corner in our house and found a 1964 Home Economics trophy on Etsy that was a perfect place to stash our keys on our entry table. I take pleasure in showing off our creativity through our home. I bet no one else considered a vintage trophy as the perfect spot.
- Tonight I had extra time to make dinner and we were all home together (yay!). I love listening to Ella Fitzgerald on my record player and putting together a beautiful meal for my family. While we did the dishes, I loved talking with my husband and bouncing ideas off of each other for our jobs.
- I finished the night with a really good book. I love the highlight feature so I can underline passages and reread them later. Reading the words of others inspires me so much on ways that I can be more creative with my own storytelling. I also love finding these writers on social media later and getting the chance to tell them how much their words mean to me. I love encouraging other creative people daily because it means so much to me when people encourage me in my creative habits.
As you can see, most of these tasks don’t fall under the Pinterest-worthy delusions we feel defines us as creative people. Don’t get me wrong, a lot of my life revolves around creating Pinterest images and moments that will inspire women to grab that glue gun and craft. The reality is though that those moments don’t define us as being creative people. Being creative means aligning your curiosities for the world with your passions.
You are more creative than you know! Now that we know this, our next task will be building upon those creative passions and making creativity a part of your daily routine!
ACTIVITIES & QUESTIONS
- Acknowledge your own creativity by writing down all of the creative things you do that bring you pleasure. Make a list (on your smartphone or jotted down in a journal) of things you have done that have brought you creative pleasure.
- Look for ways to recapture your creativity by identifying your childhood passions: What did you love as child and how can you translate that into your adult life? Did you love to color? Maybe grabbing an adult coloring book might be a great way to begin. Did you love dance class as a kid? Maybe finding an easy Zumba class might be a way to get that back in your life. Did you love painting? Maybe snagging a ticket for an art museum might inspire you to get back to creating. The possibilities are simply endless.