In the earliest days of our childhood we spent a good amount of time doing creative things. We were continually building and creating things like lego castles, forts made of household items, and works of art. Somewhere along the way the importance of this takes a backseat and it’s written off as “that’s a good hobby, but not something you do to make a living.”
Before long we stop creating and turn into sponges that absorb information that is rarely put to use. We go through the motions, doing what we’re told, and are left scratching our heads as to why we’re so bored with everything in your lives. We don’t realize that our creative capacity is fundamentally important to doing something the matters in the world.
Have you ever noticed how the summer used to last forever when you were a kid and how time seems to fly when you’re an adult? Well, when you’re a kid a three month summer is a much larger fraction of your life and when you’re adult it’s much smaller. So if it seems like it’s going much faster that’s because it is. You’ve probably heard that every one of us has an inner child, the person inside us that never wants to grow up, our inner Peter Pan. As adults we’re so busy taking life so seriously we don’t give enough thought to tapping into our inner child.
The beautiful thing is that you have your inner child at your complete disposal. When was the last time you went to a toy store? When was the last time you went on all the rides at a carnival? When was the last time you acted like you were five instead of fifty? The beauty of this is it’s your opportunity to live as if you don’t have a care or a worry in the world, even it is for a brief moment in time.
Creating for the Sake of Creating
In adult life, it seems that everything we do has to have a purpose. We have to be able to answer the question why. Ask a kid why he’s building a lego castle and he’ll probably look at you like you’ve lost your mind. He’s building it because he feels like it and enjoys it. I think we need more of this mindset in our adult lives.
A few years ago I had a roommate who was absolutely brilliant and what some people might call crazy. But one thing I always appreciated about her was her need to create things that had no purpose. There was never a dull moment living with her. If you want to see an example check out the absolutely ridiculous parody music video on a Bollywood movie she and I made.” We need to do more creating for the sake of creating. You don’t need a reason to create.
Here are a couple of ideas for you:
- Build a castle made out of Legos
- Start a DIY furniture project
- Plant a Garden
- Paint a Portrait
- Make a Coffee Table Book With Your Own Photos
There’s an incredible sense of fulfillment in building something that you can be proud of. It’s something where you can directly see the impact of your work and it’s an important part of life that we lost sight of somewhere in our journey through childhood.
So, what are you going to start building today?
Photo by Eddi van W.
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15 thoughts on “Why Everybody Should Embrace Their Creative Potential”
Great reminder! I’ve been thinking along the same lines. The toughest part for me is allowing myself to just create without being critical about the outcome (maybe something we pick up as adults?). Anyway, I’m working on it. Some friends and I are having a Creative Day when we’re getting together to paint, write music, start a novel, cook, knit, or whatever just to nurture our creativity and have fun with it.
As adults we became far more critical of the outcome. LEt’s face it. NOt every one of us produced amazing works of art as Kindergarteners, but that never stopped us. We just had fun with it.
A great article and you are so right to suggest that people would play or work in the garden. It is kind of getting away from what you usually focus on and at the same time you have to be relaxed, then creative ideas will come by themselve. Being creative is nothing you can force.For me to meditate is one means to relax and “un-focus”. People who work hard are the least creative and people who are playful and joyous are the most creative.
At a US-TV Station in the creative department they have a room to relax and they have games and a ping pong table. I did not wonder to see that.
We need to play more when it comes to our work if we intend to do our best work.
Children can be so wise. There’s so much wisdom in being childlike and open to possibility. Love this! As adults we put up too many unnecessary filters. Just the other day I was remembering how much I used to love drawing. Why did I stop? Life and Work should be about having fun and finding joy.
We can learn so much from the behavior of children. It’s strange when you think about it. On one level we evolve as adults. But on some levels we actually regress because we lose the things that made us so amazing as children.
Great post! Love the kids and the castles. Wish I could be less purposeful and spend more time happily creating. Thanks for the push.
Glad you enjoyed it :)
Great post, most of my time is taken up working to pay the bills which tends to make me miserable but recently i have decided to try and spend more time doing the things that i used to enjoy when i was a kid and this has brought a renewed passion for life, sometimes you have to take time for yourself to be a better person for all those who love and rely on you, so i do recommend getting creative, go for it and discover the joy it can bring .
Children are so connected to their creativity. As we grow up and are educated it is the left brain that is trained more than the right brain. Many of us lose that connection to our creative self. You have great suggestions to tap into that side of us and to begin to release some of our seriousness!
Thanks for this post.
Creative endeavors bring a certain sense of joy to our lives, especially when they’re done with no purpose other than for their enjoyment. If we learn to connect to them as adults I think we’ll find the quality of our lives improving.
Read John Holt “Why children fail”, “why children learn”. Conventional schooling has made us so critical of our creative work. Love your blog!
I’ve been playing with this idea recently. Setting some time aside each day to just be and see what happens. It has been fascinating for me to discover how uncomfortable I am to go for even a short time without a clear goal or direction. When I let go of that discomfort I inevitably end up doing something creative. Giving that artist-child inside me some space to just be. It is amazing.
thanks – i like that – creating for creating’s sake
i think i need to start writing for writing’s sake
too often i get caught up – need a post here, a guest post there, write like this, adhere to these rules
sometimes i should just play with words!
Love this article. I so miss being able to paint like I did as a child. I never thought too much about it. Now if I try to paint I jst see a blank sheet of paper and my mind freezes up.
I tried going to everning classes in art a couple of years ago. At the start of the course there was an expensive list of “supplies needed) including acrylic paints, expensive types of paper, specialised brushes and pencils…I think I was so sacred of messing up all the expensive supplies I hardly managed to paint anything at all! Maybe it’s better to have loads of cheap paper and poster paints like I had as a child.