we are all creative

A few weeks ago I met up with my friend, the awesome Eager Beaver.  She looked at me and said, “So missy, you’re a writer.  Where have you been hiding?” (I had recently told her about my blog, and she’d read the whole thing in one sitting.)

My first instinct was to deflect.  I’m not a writer.  I’m not writing a book.  I have a blog.  A blog does not a writer make.  But instead of saying any of those things, I let her words sink in.  I smiled at the compliment – because, in my opinion, Eager Beaver is a great writer.  For her to consider me in that category was pretty cool.

Later, I thought more about my initial resistance.  Where did that sense of hesitancy and discomfort come from? Why the feeling that, in calling myself a writer, I was somewhat of an imposter?

IMG_0819

When I was a child, the response to ‘What do you want to be when you grow up?’ was always ‘Writer’.  As a teenager, it narrowed down to ‘Magazine Writer’. (Anyone remember Sassy mag? Dream job!)  There wasn’t much else I really wanted to do.

But over time, I absorbed some negative messages: Writing is competitive.  You didn’t go to school for it.  You need connections.  There’s no money there (unless you’re a bestseller).  As a profession, it appeared reserved for a select few.  The joy I derived from writing was replaced with pressure, performing, being judged, and getting paid.  And so, apart from my diary, I buried my words and carried on with more practical matters.

I think there are many of us who feel our deep creative potential, but don’t know how to access or express it.   There is a sense that something profound is missing in our lives; so close, yet so far away.

Even though we know the creative process should be fun and joyful, it is also marked by ambivalence.  We may fear that others will judge our creations (and ultimately us).  But it’s mostly we who judge ourselves.  Our inner critic (ego) is relentless, comparing us to others, measuring us to impossibly high standards, labelling our creations as ‘good’ or ‘bad’.

This can lead to self-sabotage, either through procrastination, or saying we don’t have the time/money/knowledge/skill/whatever to pursue our creative endeavours.   Or we make the assertion that we just ‘aren’t that creative’.  We stop before we even try.

goddess on the rocks

A few months ago, I read Wayne Dyer’s definition of creation as ‘bringing non-being into being’.  The truth and simplicity of these words struck me – as though I’d been forever searching for something that was so obvious, and right in front of me all along.

Creativity is totally open-ended.  There are no rules.  It’s not about putting brush to canvas, or pen to paper.  It can be whatever I want it to be, and in any form.

Seth Godin writes: “I don’t believe that you are born to do a certain kind of art, mainly because your genes have no idea what technology is going to be available to you…Our society has reorganized so that the answer to the question ‘where should I do art?’ is now a long booklet, not a simple checklist of a few choices” (Linchpin, p. 77).

I love this notion that our creative potential can express itself with increasing diversity, ever-adapting to social change.  The digital world has transformed much in terms of creation and connection.  There is not necessarily just one thing we were ‘born to do’, and the worlds of ‘art’ and ‘creativity’ become more accessible to everyone. This refines and expands our definitions of who we are, and what we can create.

Our creative spark never disappears.  It sits patiently, latent, watching, waiting to ignite.

Starting this blog was my 21st century response to the timeless creative call within.  I want to cultivate this inner fire, not just with writing, but with other pursuits I’ve shied away from.  We need to nurture our own possibilities, and support each other’s great creations.

I thank the Eager Beaver for this reminder.

22 thoughts on “we are all creative

  1. Love your blog! I have this same Lakshmi poster in my living room…coincidence? Synchronicity? I really appreciate your words and wisdom. 🙂

    Like

    • that’s so awesome…i love that lakshmi is all around! definitely a message there. thank you for reading my blog – i am glad you enjoy it and appreciate you taking the time to comment! 🙂 aleya

      Like

  2. We are Gods and Goddesses’ in our creative potential~ I see you included a favorite Goddess of mine, dearest Lakshmi in your post. I adore her. You are as I said earlier a great writer, (Not labeling but stating your ability in the art) I have had to work on accepting compliments. Why? I have indeed improved on this over the last several years.

    Like

  3. I connect to this deeply because I’m in the same situation. I knew from thirteen that I wanted to be a writer and all of the above came in between me and that desire. Now the burden of ignoring my creativity is too painful to bear. I must push through the angst within the collective. Thank you for writing as honestly as you do. Even though it’s hard you’ve given me some breathing room with this wonderful writing.

    Like

    • thank you so much. i feel the same way about your writing – it very much resonates with me. it’s wonderful to connect with you in the digital world as we each explore this essential part of ourselves. namaste, aleya

      Like

  4. I grew with the same relationship to being an artist that you have had with being a writer, being told “of course there’s no money in being an artist, artists don’t make money until they’re dead” and other completely ludicrous notions surrounding being an artist. Then I was always told I had to pick one form of art and focus on that, well that never worked for me, I like doing a huge mixture of art. Then my other passion is Parelli Natural Horsemanship, another industry in which people tell you can’t make any money unless you’re in the horse racing industry and even then it’s a one in a million chance. Well that is TOTALLY false as well.

    We just have no business listening to anything that isn’t connected to Source or as Abraham-Hicks say, get in the vortex and everything will be clear. And to add to that concept, the rest of the time, stick your fingers in your ears and LA LA LA LA LA LA until you get back into the vortex, haha. I think for me and I even think for the better part of the people in the world in this day and age, your ultimate career doesn’t exist yet, it’s a niche God is going to create for you (as Marianne Williamson says). I think that’s what it will be for me, and I think it’s in the process of coming together now. With the move to Pagosa Springs, I think the blending of art and natural horsemanship will come together in a way I could never have dreamed up all on my own!

    Another book for you to check out, it’s on my list, but I haven’t gotten to it yet, is “Why Right Brainers Will Rule the Future” by Daniel Pink. Time for us to wholly embrace our creativity indeed!

    Like

    • yes!! i was thinking of my art history degree when i wrote this post, how it was amazing but led to my ideas of what ‘real’ art is and isn’t, and how ‘true’ artists are poor/starving/under-appreciated while they’re alive etc etc. and how the bigger part of me knows, of course that’s not true, that’s just something a lot of people decided to agree on, and not question, till now.
      that’s why i’ve been listening to so much abraham-hicks lately, my mind needs a reboot as i’ve been starting to doubt myself. i’m super inspired by your journey and i love that so many of us who like to do so many different and awesome and amazing things are defining a new way of being.
      even if it’s confusing for us, we are creating something very exciting individually and collectively, and the digital age is huge in connecting and sharing and inspiring. i would love to see abraham live, the closest in my area is seattle in august. thank you!

      Like

  5. I can very much relate to your experience. I am still in High School, but my dream when I grow up is to be a magazine writer or novelist. It has always been my dream, ever since I wrote my first story in fifth grade. It was only until a year ago that I realized how lucratively absent the career can be, though that is still what I wish to become. That is also why I started a blog. 🙂

    Like

    • that’s so great that you know what you love to do, and are doing it! i think when you keep doing what you love to do, you can’t go wrong…even if it looks different from what you had once pictured. i also think blogging is where it’s at, personally and professionally – connecting with other writers, and making new friends.
      if it’s your dream, so it shall be (so it IS)…maybe even bigger and better than you imagined! 😉 thanks for your thoughtful comment, aleya

      Like

  6. I’ve also often felt like an impostor at various crossroads in my life. When I was an active musician (I’m on hiatus at the moment), I always felt that I wasn’t measuring up to other people’s idea of what a musician is. Same with writing. What I realized was that definitions are very fluid once you allow them to be. So I am a lot of things, I am good at many things, and if I think so – it’s true. Because I’m the one living my reality. 🙂 Really great post, Leya. I’ve also been reading Linchpin recently, Seth Godin makes a ton of valid points in his various books and writings. Gold mine! Keep writing, it’s great to read!

    Like

    • hi lin! yes i think you mentioned linchpin in one of your recent posts? i love what he writes about, and what you say…that definitions are fluid and we don’t have to be limited to one or two things in terms of work, life, creation…we can be many things…AND there is room for them all, which is the beautiful part.
      i used to have a ‘jack of all trades master of none’ complex but now, esp through connecting with others and reading books like seth’s, i see that this can be a good thing, and makes life more interesting! 🙂 thanks for your comment.

      Like

      • It does make life more interesting! Yes, I did mention linchpin 🙂 Just finished reading it about a week ago. And, I also had a ‘jack of all trades master of none’ complex, which didn’t do me any good at all, since I spent more time feeling inadequate than I did focusing on my strengths…

        Like

  7. I don’t think it’s important how you ‘label’ yourself… As long as you are employing your (abundant:) creativity, and feeling free to express it with authenticity, you will be happy ‘doing’ and enjoy ‘being’ – today a writer tomorrow something else? Enjoy! xox

    Like

    • absolutely. the more i wrote about the creativity the more fluid the concept became, to the point where it was all-encompassing and had no definition for me. there are no restrictions on it, so it can express itself in different ways, moment to moment. i used to think creativity meant solely ‘doing’ – eg, creating a work of art. but now i see it’s so much more. it permeates everything so ‘being’ – living, breathing, sitting, imagining – is a creative act too!

      Like

please share your thoughts!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s