What is it to be creative? The dictionary definition does not delve enough into the subject in a way that would give us some idea of why we should be creative – of what benefit is it to us in our daily lives? The definition states that creativity is how we use our imagination or original ideas to create something. That much seems obvious. But the question of just why (and how) we do this is one that continues to challenge us.
Why are we creative?
Perhaps the most significant clue is to look back to childhood. A child, when presented with a set of crayons, can do many things with them. You could roll them around the floor, pile them on top of each or they could use them to create artwork. Each of those uses is creative. Creativity allows a child to explore new ideas and build up new mental pathways and new approaches to problem-solving. Creativity is also a unique expression of individuality.
There are those who have never lost the ability to harness the power of creativity. These are the great artists of our time. It was Pablo Picasso who said ‘each child is an artist – the problem is staying an artist when you grow up.’
That is the challenge of your creativity. How do we maintain that wonder and promise of creativity when you become caught up in the mundane existence we are required to endure as we get older?#Creativity can be the start of a long #journey towards self-worth Click To Tweet
Be creative as you get older
The challenge of leveraging creativity as we get older is that society today values conformity. Be too creative society tells us, and you fall outside the mainstream.
But without the ability to be creative society itself become poorer. Creative people come up with beautiful inventions that power our modern world. Innovative solutions to unique problems are the reason we can today enjoy a standard of life (at least in the Western World) that our ancestors could only dream of.
Creativity allows us freedom of expression. We do not have to be master painters or designers to explore our creativity. We do not have to be best-selling authors to write. These are forms of self-expression which allow us to become more comfortable within ourselves. By being creative we realize that we can explore new things and avoid that dreaded trap of self-censorship – we learn not to judge ourselves.
This has a variety of knock-on effects. Through creative thinking, we gain a sense of pride, and we explore what makes every one of us a unique individual. Creativity can be the start of a long journey towards self-worth. By expressing ourselves creatively, we can discover the inner resources we did not imagine that we had.
Unique challenges lead to novel solutions
Creativity is also helpful in coming up with solutions and answers to individual problems. Creativity can increase our resourcefulness and problem-solving abilities.
There is another reason we should all be exploring our creative side. Creating something unique can help us cope with the stresses of modern life. Creativity does not rely on a framework and rules that have been set in place by external forces. It frees your mind to explore. And during those explorations, it is almost inevitable we will come to realizations about ourselves. Art allows us to hold up a mirror and find out more about what makes us individuals. It can also be cathartic.
Those who engage in creative pursuits are less anxious and more able to deal with challenges. In 21st century society where the levels of stress are ever increasing, many have turned to medication to help them cope. This is understandable – however, the rewards of creativity can go a long way towards avoiding the problems associated with medical treatment.
Creativity is a valuable part of what makes us human. We cannot ignore our creative urges – they are too useful.
Everyday Creativity Becomes Routine
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