A few years ago, I checked out a book entitled How to be Creative If You Never Thought You Could, by Tera Leigh. I was doing many creative things but was still intrigued by the process of what it took to “think” of myself as creative.
Somewhere along the way, I saw that I was always creative. In my reading the different ways the author outlined to try to help readers find their “inspirational-in” to create, I realized I’d always had fun creating, since I was a child: marbling papers, collaging, painting, needlepoint, making handmade books, journaling, making a beginning quilt, writing a book, handmaking cards, making earrings, beginning pottery, etc.
Aren’t we often creative even if we don’t know or don’t think that we are?
As a kid, I spent much of my life at the small neighborhood library, the middle school library, or the high school library, afraid to ask anyone things for fear of “looking dumb.” Oh, how I am glad not to repeat that part of being a kid again! Thank goodness for aging out of that painful part of youth!
I read my way through books about making friends, starting to run, how to put on makeup, what colors would look good on me, how to date, how to ask for help, how to understand your parents, what to say on a job interview, how to apply to college, how to create a cute wardrobe on a budget, how to caucus, how to get over heartbreak, how to study for huge tests, how to be creative, etc.
Mind you, this was pre-google, so I looked up the books and read them or hauled them home to read. I also remember trying to find articles in online literature databases that would answer my hard-to-answer life questions.
I thought, (and apparently sometimes still do,) that if I read about it, I would be able to master it.
When I was barely a teenager, my mother gave a speech at an event in my honor. In part of her speech, she said something about how when I was a baby, she tried to teach me how to crawl by getting down on the floor with me, on all fours and showing me the crawling motions. A friend from a nearby apartment came over and said to her, “That’s great, but I think they figure it out on their own!”
The experiencing of creativity or making friends or studying for big tests or crawling is most often done by just “leaping in” and doing it, sans the demo or the reading about it…even when we think that will help. Once you jump in, you’re off and running even if there minor hiccups along the way.
Changing How We See Our Creative Selves
There are people I know who say, “I’m not creative.” But when I look around their homes at the way they’ve decorated them, when I see the artsy jewelry they wear or the way they arrange flowers in a vase, the eclectic musical tastes they have, the interesting flavors they combine to cook elaborate dinners or their well-honed ‘hostess-with-the-mostess’ entertaining style, I beg to differ. One of them has the most gorgeous garden, designed with things that bloom in with a palette of colors that complement each other. These things are all “being creative.”
I am not the most talented of all craftspeople, but I am talented. I am not the best writer in the world, but I am a good writer. I am not the best at many things and I am my best for me. That includes trying new creative endeavors.
Recently a colleague and I took a hatmaking/millinery class we had both been intrigued by for a few years. We had such fun, and I see I would have to practice very hard if I was more interested in millinery, since it used many skills I’d never practiced before.
As long as you’re using your imagination to make or invent something new in the world, whether you’ve been doing that thing for years (or you are a hatmaking newbie like we were,) you are being creative. The more you pursue your creative endeavors ‘for the good’ and with a positive spin of sorts, the better off we’ll all be when we get to see, hear, read, witness, taste, or simply be inspired by YOUR creativity!
Reach out if you wish to share some of your own ideas on sparking creativity, believing you are creative, or if you’d like to share pictures of what you’ve recently been finding joy creating these days! [email protected]
Ready, set and we’re off and running.
Before you go
Be sure and scoot over to my JOYFESTIVAL Shop and check out my DIY Joy Kits!
I’ve always believed that your personal mission to Raise Your Joy Quotient can take many forms. They can be gatherings at a home that includes music, poetry, comedy, vision boarding, some interesting speech, meditation and other activities led by you or friends.
Or they can be subtle and gentle like a quiet dinner with friends or the creation of a mobile pop-up Happiness Room in the public sector. There is no right or wrong way to facilitate your own JOYFESTIVAL, but it does need to have the common ingredients of gratitude, joy, positivity, connection, and activity for it to work best!
Luckily, I’ve taken much of the guesswork out of creating your own JOYFESTIVAL with the creation of my DIY Joy Kits. Within these kits, you will find all the tips, ideas, processes and activities to take the angst out of throwing the “meaningful-party” enabling you to share your own inner joy with the world around you, whether you’re in the midst of darkness or light, busy lives or lives that need a jumpstart. Click the image above to visit the JOYFESTIVAL Shop or go here.