You’ve lingered and marveled over other artists and wondered just where they get their amazingly original ideas. You make promises to yourself that you will spend more time with your creative passions, but at the end of the day, you are too exhausted to think any thoughts, let alone something fresh and new.
How do these creative artists pull this off when you are struggling to get through the day?
Maybe They’re Just Born That Way…
Maybe they are. Or…maybe they’re not. There is a lot of talk that genetics plays a large role in our natural creative ability. You’ve either “Got it” or you don’t. I even read this week about two genes related to the amount of artistic and scientific creativity a person will have. According to the reports, between 22 and 36 percent of the difference between people regarding creativity is genetic.
What About the Rest of US?
That leaves a high percentage of creative people that aren’t accounted for by genetics.
I don’t doubt that there is truth to the role of genetics. However, I believe that environment and lifestyle are part of the critical package. I also believe that whatever gifts we are born with, won’t amount to a hill of beans unless we cultivate the creative lifestyle and habits to actually produce a creative product or thought. A person born with only a smidge of creative talent, who develops the mindsets, habits and systems to become innovative and creative in a functional way, will go farther than some poor highly-creative person who doesn’t have the where-with-all to do anything about their natural gifts.
I believe we can learn to cultivate our natural level of creativity and awaken more innovation if we want to.
Of course, wanting isn’t enough. you have to be aware of, and receptive to, the creativity that comes to you. That is the first step. Then, after that, you have to be committed to production of the creation.
Ideas with Wings
How many times have you had a brilliant idea? How many of those times did the idea fly out the window and become a distant memory before you ever took any action on it? How many times was the idea not even written down?
Brilliance, for most of us anyway, isn’t a stagnant condition of the spirit. It doesn’t linger, or wait around for you to get your act together, or have time for it. It pops in, unexpected. Ideas have wings and they will flutter from person to person until somebody takes action on them and makes them happen.
Will that person be you? Or will somebody else step up to the plate before you do?
Here is a harsh truth that many creative souls don’t want to know about.
The ACTION of producing creativity requires strong self-discipline, strong guiding principles and vision, and an indomitable spirit of persistence.
Here is the good news. Those traits can be cultivated. Perhaps not overnight. (After all, one of those traits is persistence.) But, with time and commitment, you can cultivate the creativity that you have always dreamed of.
Here are some guidelines to help you increase the level of creativity in your life.
Live Life Wide-Awake. Creative thought comes to us all the time. However, many people simply aren’t listening. They are living numb, burnt-out to the incoming stimuli around them. They don’t hear the knock on their inner door when the Muses come calling. Practice being alert and present. Get tuned in to the little voices in your head that ask questions and are brainstorming all the time.
Show Up Put creative endeavors on your schedule. Make a date with creativity. And don’t do all the talking…remember to listen too! Many people aren’t creative simply because they don’t invest the intention, time and energy toward thinking and doing creative things. Your future goes where your focus goes, but only if your focus takes action! Make doing, seeing and enjoying art, (In all its amazing forms) a high priority in your life.
Channel Your Inner Rebel The Status Quo is NOT creative. Break out of the habit of accepting everything at face value. Just because the Cool Kids said it has to be done this way, doesn’t make it right for all time. Today just might be the day to create something new and amazing. Ask WHY, ask WHY NOT, ask HOW and learn to question the rules. A lot of them are worth breaking.
Learn to Suck This is critical. You must be willing to suck at something before you will get good at it. Sucking is a part of growing. It takes courage and guts to suck and isn’t for wimps. Wimps do not usually suck because they never try. Try something new all the time and let your suckiness fly! It is in the failing that many of our best innovations have occurred.
Be Curious Make it a point to investigate life. Be all about discovery. When the brain is actively learning, it is also actively asking questions. Questions spur on new ideas. Curiosity is one of the most powerful doorways to innovation and creativity that there ever can be.
Discover the Power of What if Question EVERYTHING. What if the world was a triangle instead of a ball? How would that change our lives? Silly question? You bet! But it gets the imagination going, doesn’t it? It forces you to look at strange and new possibilities. Who knows! Maybe there is an entire Triangle World out there waiting to be discovered!
Connect with Your Inner Child Play. Just for the sake of playing. Children are creative without even trying. As a past Pre-school teacher, I can honestly say I have never met an uncreative three-year old. Adults stifle creativity. Children steep in it. They create with no agenda to produce great and awesome creations. They fingerpaint. They make awesome messes. Give your inner adult a break and play like a little child. Have fun. Go where the spirit moves you. Remember how to pretend.
Claiming Your Creative Spirit
I believe, with ever fiber of my being, that every one of us has a creative gift. I believe that our creativity is a natural part of our spirit just waiting to be explored. I believe that creating is part of our purpose for existing. I believe we were made in the image of God, THE Creator, to create just the same way that magnificent source of all creation does. It is our god-given right to be creative. All we have to do is step into the power and make the effort.
Claim it. Believe in it. Become it. Be the artist you were meant to be.