Cultivating Creativity

“Every child is an artist, the problem is how to remain one when he grows up.”
– Pablo Picasso

Photo Credit: Brand Weavers blog
Photo Credit: Brand Weavers blog

I believe creativity, like laughter, is oxygen for the soul. It transforms mundane moments into extraordinary ones; without ideas, nothing in the universe expands. Ralph Waldo Emerson, noted thinker and writer said: “The ancestor to every action is a thought.”

Cultivate creativity fearlessly; think of yourself as a farmer tilling soil, anxiously awaiting the harvest. We all arrive bearing unique gifts. Therefore what separates those whose lives are imbued with creativity is not superiority, but a kind of fierce defiance and refusal to settle for the smallness of life.

When work or study swallows you whole, eviscerating the joy of writing a poem, painting landscapes, dancing whimsically, or conceptualizing an idea, step back, take a deep breath. The world, which once felt confining and rigid, now begins to open, your freedom is within reach.

Here are Three Ways to Cultivate Creative Expression:

1. Walk – Don’t just walk, observe the intrinsic beauty of nature, listen to the sound of cars hitting asphalt, a child’s innocuous laughter, in short get out of your own head. Allow your walk to become meditation, as Thich Naht Hanh teaches.

2. Release – Who says you must become Picasso? Creativity is about bringing your unique voice and vision to bear. Maybe your creativity involves putting together a business plan, or building relationships with those around you. Do not allow others to rigidly define creativity for you. Live artfully, as author and entrpreneur Sandra Magsamen says.

3. Completion – Have an idea for a creative project? Make small steps toward completion. Your confidence increases with each creative project you cross off the list, whether large (e.g. producing a film) or more modest (crocheting a sweater), and your desire to produce more projects increases. You realize you can do it!

Emelda De Coteau
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