Let’s face it, when you’re isolated, it can be tedious. It can be monotonous. It can be boring.
You turn to your social media feeds and see all the clever things people are doing and think, if I were creative, look how much fun I’d have. Plus, I’d have something to do.
I wish I were creative…
I’ve already written about what creativity really is, you can read about it here. But you may be wondering, how do I even get started? What IS my creative expression?
The graphic above is how I see the creative process. When you understand that it’s a process and that you can enter at any point in the process, it can make it easier to find your starting point. Where you go from there can take many, many forms.
Here’s how it works:
Consume – we are all consumers of other creations. Being outdoors is consuming nature, cruising Facebook is consuming other people’s contributions and shopping is consuming goods and services. We all consume.
Collect – but what DO we consume? Here is where I invite you to pay attention. Attention is a mighty weapon against Dreamkillers and is the key to unlocking your creativity. Look around you, observe your behavior, and notice what draws your attention. What are you curious about?
Create – take what draws your attention and form it into something new. Combine, reuse, or enhance what’s already there. Add usefulness, add beauty, add interest to your life. That’s being creative. You don’t have to be an artist!
Share – the process isn’t truly complete until you release it for someone else to consume. Sharing is as important as creating. Sometimes when we think someone else will see what we made, that thought is enough to prevent making it, but you can wait to share when you’re ready.
What we have right now is an open field. This crazy virus has changed our lives and our use of time. We can either throw up our hands and give up (i.e. let the Dreamkillers win) or we can leverage this gift of time to stretch in a different way.
The secret to being creative is to get out of our way. We judge our efforts and give up. We get frustrated and perhaps angry because what we see in our mind’s eye is not what’s being created. We let our thoughts and emotions run rampant and shut down creative thoughts before they have a chance to emerge.
To create, stay open to what wants to come through.
Here’s an example. My friend loves to garden; she longs to dig her hands in the soil and grow flowers and vegetables. This is a deep act of primal creativity. Yet, the garden centers are off limits to her compromised health, so no replenishing of plants, no seedling starters, and no new bags of soil.
She has done what she can with what she has on hand, but it doesn’t feel like enough. She wants flowers. So, she diverts her attention to the computer digging through her catalog of flower photos from gardens past and posts them on Facebook.
Do you see it? She took what she loves and has collected, then created something new and shares it. That’s the process! You can do this with whatever pulls your attention.
I hope this inspires you to love what you already love. Please turn it into something different and new and share it with us.