In my 20’s there were days, I felt unhappy. Days, I didn’t want to get out of bed.
There was always something calling to me, though, whispering to pull me out of the dull drums. Something saying, “You know I bet if you did this, you would feel some love and happiness.”
Now after many years, I’ve come to know that voice and her name is Creativity.
I like painting, writing and reading. I like to knit too. And cook. And I like walking in gardens having a real conversation with a friend.
But in the past, even if that interested me, I didn’t always wake up in the morning excited and enthusiastic to do that thing I LOVED.
And that was because in the desire to have a BIG happy full life, these smaller things didn’t seem like they held enough significance. They seemed not important enough to make a REAL difference in feeling like a success.
These acts of creativity weren’t the man showing up so that I could be happily married thereafter. Or my book making the New York Times Bestseller List. Or winning a million dollars.
They were just these small things that gave me simple joy.
ANYTHING we do because we enjoy it is a creative uplifting experience. We don’t have to be artistic to be the creator of our aliveness.
When I did something creative that I loved, even if seemingly ordinary, it ALWAYS had a much larger impact to my happiness than I could ever realize. Here’s why:
1) When we do something creative it’s like active meditation.
When we create (building a toy car in our garage, taking an improv class, planting an herb garden…) we put our focused attention on it. It asks us to be present.
But even more so, because we enjoy doing it, we don’t have to think that much about being present. We just ARE. We’re IN IT. Enjoying it because it gives us PLEASURE. And that WAKES US UP. It gets the energy in our body flowing again.
2) Creativity shifts our perspective.
Whenever we create something (learning a new language, taking a road trip to a neighboring town, getting a puppy…) it shakes us out of the same-old, same-old. It brings brighter light. We’re stretching and growing.
These moments accumulated, begin to form new bones. Our blood gets regenerated. And we embark in a wild world of curiosity and discovery that breathes new life.
3) Once we ignite creativity it always leads us somewhere else.
Like a river finding its sea, the current of creativity guides us to unknown explored territory. And even though we never know where it might lead, it’s always to a bigger body of water.
First, it takes us closer to ourselves and THAT makes a huge difference in our life, career and relationships. I took a cooking class for fun — only to discover later how much pleasure I got from having dinner parties, where I deepened relationships with new friends.
I learned the Tarot, thinking I was crazy, but it ended up giving me the idea to create a book and card deck set, which is now published.
I attended a painting workshop and found that I continued painting on my own for over 20 years. Through that process, I continue to develop an incredible intimate relationship with myself.
You get what I mean?
Creativity has this wonderful way of connecting us to more and more happy, pleasurable things to appreciate and pulls at our heartstrings.
Perhaps, the result is something we never thought of. And that’s the cool thing about creativity. It thinks FOR us and has a bigger plan in store than we could possibly know until we engage with it.
4) Creativity produces self-esteem.
When we show up to do something creative, we’re taking a positive action step in our lives. We’re making a statement that we’re willing to create change and do something different, just by the act of showing up.
The more we meet our creative nature the more we’re saying, I’m doing something I enjoy because doing something that brings me joy matters.
It doesn’t have to be a big deal. Or become anything.We’re just doing it because we love it and the more we do stuff because we love it, the more self-love we embrace.
And the more self-love we embrace, the more happiness and appreciation is cultivated.
5) It’s something we do just for ourselves.
We do little acts of creativity not for someone else. Not because we want or need someone to love it. Or buy it. Or approve of it. We do these things because we’re called towards it.
It doesn’t have to save anyone. Or better the world—although it does, it always does, because as we create, we increase our happiness and then those we come into contact with feel that and are energized.
So what do you feel like creating this week?
A scrap book? Building a solar panel? Hanging some new pictures on your wall? Turning on some favorite music and dancing in your living room? Taking a walk with your camera and finding new angles and light?
Each moment shared with Creativity is divine. It’s how we got here in the first place. So why not connect and be inspired? Love is waiting for you right around the corner.
About Lynn Newman
Lynn has a Masters in Counseling Psychology, is a writer, painter, and game creator (like The Game of You & The Game of Insight – An Interactive Way To Know Yourself, Create The Life You Want). She’s big into unleashing the truest, free-est parts of you, to experience more joy, purpose, and passion in life.
Visit her at LynnNewman.com.