Where Creativity Blooms
Spring is happening (in some parts of the world) and it's reminding me of how much creative work is going on around me. Flowers bursting forth (such divas!), plants punching through the soil, craning their little necks to the light. This year I'm growing goji berry and lemongrass from seed. All I did was put seeds in soil and water them every day, then voila...the little babies came up! I feel like a bloody magician. How is it that I made something so beautiful? All I did was tend to them each day with the blind hope that, beneath espresso-rich soil, life might begin. I couldn't see it just yet, though it was there. Over several days, I kept the soil moist. Watching and waiting.
As I'm writing this a hummingbird is humming at my window, looking in at me--or so I think. Yesterday, driving down a country road I almost hit one of nature's little drones. I slammed on the breaks just in time, dust engulfing my car. As a spirit animal the hummingbird symbolizes taking pleasure in life's sweetness and in showing love more fully in all that we do.
This year I'm striving to allow creativity into all aspects of my life, not only my writing. I'm looking at my relationships, my health, finances... to see what needs pruning, a different approach, or extra care.
I must admit to being overly giddy at this time of year. A spark starts in my belly, travelling up to ignite my brain. This morning I thought about this blog post and what I might write. Then I went to the Osho Zen Tarot deck that I've been having some fun with lately. I thought of you, my friends, blog readers and website visitors, as I magically drew the card Ripeness.
Here's me reading about the meaning of the card: Ripeness.
Creativity will bloom everywhere if we allow it. The more receptive and open we are, the greater our chances of living an inspired life. So how to create space in your life for creative acts of folly?
Here are some ideas to get you started:
- Take an inventory over the period of one week to see how you're managing your downtime. Are there things you could cut to make room for creative play? As an example, I just cancelled my Netflix as I can sometimes binge watch stuff, which I find eats up my writing time. I went on there to cancel then saw an add for a new series called The Ranch. "They drink. They swear. They sometimes fight dirty." It has that cowboy actor who was in the Big Lebowski. Shit! I can't cancel NOW, I cried! But I did.
- Make a pact with a trusted friend; you know when you were a kid and you made those secret pacts that you'd be friends for life and all that? Well, this would be a 'creativity pact' where you'd encourage each other to do whatever it is you said you'd do: art, macrame, sculpting, dance. If you don't do your THING, then you're breaking the pact. Check in often. Accountability's important!
- Start a group. If you're into writing then get some people together for a writing group that meets once every two weeks or so. Share your writing, feel supported, and help others see their work to the finish line. If you want to do more knitting then start a Stitch and Bitch group where you all meet at a cafe once a month. You'd be amazed at how much you can get done connecting in this way. If you want something online and easy, I run Routinely Creative, a wee Facebook group for people looking to connect to, and feel supported by, other creators, share routines and strategies they've found helpful; tips that help unblock barriers to creativity. Come on by and say hello!
- Tell your closest (supportive) friends and family you're starting a creative project. Apparently when you tell people something you have a better chance of following through on that thing. Peer pressure and all that.
- Clear a space in your home for your creative work. Dress it up! If there are papers all over the desk in your home office then you'll likely not want to do any work in that space.
- Once you get started on your project and have made some headway, then treat yourself to one thing, be it a fancy coffee, soak in a hot tub, connecting with a friend. In my case, a drink of bourbon and piece of dark chocolate will do just fine. Oops, that's two things. My bad! Show yourself at each step of the way that being creative has its rewards!