I had a conversation today with someone and the topic of creativity came up. The person commented that they were not very creative…as they were painting a bird house. I told them I disagreed, and I believe that EVERYONE is creative in some form or fashion. It may be making spreadsheets or decluttering a closet, painting a room or designing a fabulous work of art. There is a creative ‘thing’ in all of us we simply have to allow ourselves to try, fail, and try again until we find out what our ‘thing’ is.
I had another friend who talked about how her family had a high standard. They did not always think the things she did were worthy of her time or talent. They had other expectations and nothing she did was good enough. Having your creativity squelched is NOT the same as not having any. If we are told often enough that we are worthless, wasting our time or what we do is no good enough then of course we are going to stop exploring and accept these nasty noises. Eventually those nasty noises become the tapes in our head, we believe those lies and continue repeating them to ourselves for decades. The opinions of others has nothing to do with being creative.
And one more friend talked about how hard it is for her to show people anything she does because she is a perfectionist. She knows where all the mistakes are so she doesn’t want anyone to see anything she creates. EVERY person who creates knows where the mistakes are, the good ones get their work out there anyway. Because no one’s work is perfect does not mean that no one should be creative. It is exactly the opposite, we show our work with courage to prove that no one is perfect and anyone who tries and fails and tries again is creative.
Allowing the people around us to be creative, to share our own creativity – no matter what or where it lands – is an important part of being human. When creativity dies eventually hope, joy, curiosity and love die too. For no one can survive without that ray of sunshine reminding us that if today wasn’t great, tomorrow will be better. And if tomorrow we fail again, get back up, start again and keep being creative until you find your ‘thing’.