Many people say I wish I was creative….
What separates people who feel creative to those who feel that they are not creative at all? Really it is that belief that you are creative. The belief that you can and you will.
But what does it mean to be creative? Creativity is the combination of insight and an open mind that gives you an ability to see things in a different light. We are all born creative. We all have an open mind when we are children. This open mind is all we need for creativity to flourish.
We are all born curious, we have that insatiable appetite to learn, invent, explore and study. The creative process comes naturally as a child. There is no fear of being wrong, no expectation to produce or what will be produced. The problem is that as adults we lose the ability to create freely. We question our ideas and decide that we are not creative. Children seem to be more open to creativity because no-one has stopped them yet. No adults have told them to close their minds yet. They still believe that they can do it. If you have kept this open mind you are lucky. It means that people in your life have encouraged you to keep an open mind, to have that curiosity.
Children don’t worry about originality, social guidelines or creative restrictions. They scribble whatever comes to them. Do first, think later. Go out and play with a child see what I mean – learn to relax and create.
Curiosity fuels our imagination. Your instinct to explore should grow into an instinct for inquiry. This ultimately helps you to discover amazing things. Your curiosity can take you where you need it to go. Where you have to express yourself without fear. Live life, be interested in the world around you. Observe and talk to the people around you, read books. Learn new things. When you try things you will fail and succeed – surround yourself with open-minded people and you will succeed and be creative. Curiosity feeds the passion. Curiosity feeds my brain. It helps you to be on the lookout for new and different ways to create.
Nurturing your curiosity helps you discover your best work. If you don’t act because you fear that things will go wrong.
Try an idea suggest by Julia Cameron (www.juliecameronlive.com).
The artists date is a once weekly solo expedition to explore something that interests you. The idea that the artist date will fire up your imagination, that it will spark ideas, it will encourage play. Since being creative is about play these artists dates help you to replenish your creative soul.
Another method that you can use as an adjunct is to CAPTURE IDEAS when they enter your head
- Keep a notebook with you at all times. This is the easiest and most successful technique to capture creative thoughts. Write everything down. It may not be important at the time, but later it might just spark something. Don’t judge these notes there is a reason these thoughts are entering your mind.
- Keeping a notebook with you at all times because when you have relaxed that those ideas come to you – when you are driving, when you are exercising, when you are shopping etc.
- Plan to be distracted. When you are working on a task jot down notes without fleshing out the actual task, research take photos etc. Then go do something else. Often when you come back to sit down and work on you task you find the idea has formed in your mind a concrete idea.
- Write notes/sketches → do something else (vacuum, shopping) → work on the final idea which will now have become more concrete in your subconscious mind
Don’t be afraid of the unknown, because everything is unknown. Keep doing what you love. Even when no-one else acknowledges it eventually it will happen. You can’t force creativity. You have to learn to relax and let go. Make space to be creative. In the beginning, we all suck at new things. It takes time, persistence and patience to get there, but jump to get outside and explore that creative zone. Creativity flourishes when you don’t seek perfection. Just do – start – move – make and create. What you do matters.
Perfectionism is the enemy of creativity. When we try to get something right, we create a debilitating loop. We focus on “fixing” what we see as a mistake, what is wrong. For a perfectionist, nothing is ever quite right or good enough. We become obsessed with the idea that something must be perfect we lose sight of the joy of creation.
It is so much easier to just be, let everything go and figure out the logistics later. You will find that you are steered in the right direction if you just trust yourself. Get rid of that all or nothing mindset. Allow yourself to be incomplete and imperfect. That is how you can get something done, and I can guarantee success.
Get rid of that negative self-talk. Don’t berate yourself when things don’t go to plan. Celebrate everything you have done even things you perceive as failures. Be grateful for each experience and learn and improve. Really celebrate all the victories and pat yourself on the back.
Creativity is unique and original.
If you stop trying to meet people’s definitions of perfect, you will take a lot of weight off your shoulders. The expectation of making something perfect is a big stress that constantly eats away at you, and uses energy that could be better put to use being creative. Do everything to the best of your ability, so you are satisfied with your work. You should work on something until you are totally satisfied with it and you have achieved the result that you wanted from it. Let your creative soul shine.
You may not think of yourself as a creative person because you have told yourself so, maybe others have told you too and you believed them. Everyone is creative and everyone is good at something. If we never try new things or even risk being a total failure, we will never discover our true artist within.
Don’t let self-limiting beliefs hold you back. Find what you love and just do it, even if you think you suck at it. Your passion and energy will keep you going and you will get better. Eventually, you will create something that you love and others love too. Just make that decision that you are going to stop living up to others expectations. Don’t do it their way, do it your way, and do it for yourself. Live up to your expectations and follow that passion and love. Express your creative process. Stop being perfect and start being creative.