Not A Creative Bone In My Body

Recently I had a conversation with an acquaintance and mentioned that I had been writing these daily emails about writing and creativity.

He snorted and said, “Well, I don’t have a creative bone in my body.”

I then proceeded to launch into a long soliloquy about how creativity is actually in everybody, if you’re human you’re creative, it’s just about finding what yours looks like…

He drank a lot of wine in the intervening minutes and then quickly inserted himself into somebody else’s conversation.

But I am not discouraged. I do really believe what I said.

A lot of people think they’re not creative. I hope that’s not how you feel, but it’s okay if it is. Maybe you feel like you’re not good at writing, or drawing, or whatever your image of creativity is.

I think it just takes some people longer than others to figure out what their creativity looks like. I was talking to a client this week who used to sew as her main creative outlet. My grandmother gardened. Various friends cook.

There are so many different ways to be creative, but the only way to figure out YOUR particular way is to experiment.

Now, one writing session, one drawing, one recipe is not necessarily going to get things going, and that’s because it’s starting with the form, instead of the function (which is backwards).

The function of creativity is immersion. Creativity immerses you in something you love. It’s a form of play, and when you’re playing, you lose track of time, you don’t mind some exertion, and you feel great afterwards.

That’s what creativity is meant to do for you — to bring you joy and a kind of freedom from the time/space continuum.

So the experiment is not actually to try and force creativity through a particular activity, but to notice which activities already bring you joy.

Here’s are a few questions to get you going: do you know what makes you feel immersed? Do you know what makes you feel joyful and in flow, and why?

Figure out the function, and let the form follow.