I have been traveling a lot lately. Today, I went out in my yard to survey three months of neglect. The weeds in the flower bed were out of control. I chose a small bed and went to work ridding the garden of those weedy pests. Even though some of the weeds were pretty, they still had to go. They were smothering the original plants.
As I tended the garden, I started thinking. I do some of my best thinking out in the garden with my hands in the dirt. My thought was:
You can apply gardening principles to growing your creativity.
Well, a garden will flourish if it is tended in a timely manner, supplied with fertile soil, and given a balance of light, water and fertilizer. Similarly, creativity will flourish if supplied with the same.
So, do we need to feed and water our creativity? Do we need to place our creativity in the light and make sure we plant it in fertile soil? You bet!
Let me explain.
First of all, creativity does not do well when neglected, when ignored, when overrun with weeds. Anything we use as an excuse to not create could be considered a weed, such as family obligations, job, relationships, alcohol, drugs, illness, laziness, or procrastination. I’m not saying that all these things hamper creativity. I’m saying that some of us use these things and more as an excuse to not create.
In addition, some of these weeds can be pretty, but may hamper creativity. I have found from my gardening experience, that pulling weeds is easier when they are small. Pulling large weeds takes more effort and can even damage the plants you are trying to help. So, don’t wait too long to tend to your creativity.
Creativity needs fertile soil, a foundation from which to grow and build. The soil can be basic knowledge of your medium or craft, the art supplies you use and the place where you create. All three of these are very important. Read, study, learn how to paint, draw, sew, weave, write, sculpt, play the piano, or whatever you desire. Buy the supplies you need. Make a place in your home that is your creating place only, a place no one else will bother or need you to keep tidy.
Creativity needs light, a spark, an “Aha” moment. I believe this light comes from God. I feel that creativity is a blessing given to us by the Greatest Creator of all. Finding your own way to stay connected to God or your Higher Power is important whether through meditation, chanting, or prayer. Each person will have their own favorite way of doing this. Mine happens to be writing my prayers in a journal.
Creativity needs water and fertilizer. I consider the water to be a flow of visual, auditory, tactile or kinesthetic stimulus. This stimulus makes us think, excites, and inspires the need to create. The fertilizer is the nourishment gleaned from going to workshops, art classes, museums, hanging with other artists, taking a photo expedition, etc. I find that walking, looking through art magazine, going to book stores, wandering through an art supply store will give me the nourishment to move forward creatively.
Strange how something as simple as pulling weeds can influence your creativity. So, get out there and work on growing your creativity!