I’ve been thinking a lot lately about creativity. Actually, I’ve mostly been thinking about it this morning because the lovely Michelle Ward, aka the When I Grow Up Coach, posted a link to a fabulous podcast from Creative Living with Jamie featuring Brené Brown (how’s that for a linking extravaganza?!?). I’ve never been an avid podcast listener – in fact, this was my first EVER – but it got the (lately) squeaky wheels in my creative noggin’ a turnin’.
Undoubtedly, I would classify myself as a creative person. But I think I’ve struggled with it for a long time. More often than not, I’ve been “socially acceptably” creative. This is a label that’s been mostly self-imposed, I realize now, but for most of my life, I’ve yearned to be creative – but not too creative, in case the rest of the world thinks I’m a nut job. Sure, I performed in plays – but only as a hobby. I’ve sung in choirs and vocal groups – but more as a pastime, not as a career. I’ve dabbled in photography, writing, acting, singing, card-making, gardening, arranging music – all sorts of things. But I’ve always felt like I needed to have a “purpose” for those things.
Photography – hmmmm, a new possible career path?
Writing – hmmmm, a means to develop myself as an “expert” in a given area (ie. coaching)?
Acting – hmmmm, it runs in the family so it must be something I *should* do…and hey, maybe I can build that resume and maybe make some money one day?
Singing – see “acting”
Card-making – hmmmm, a possible Etsy side business?
Gardening – hmmmmm, must have a pretty garden like the neighbours and hey, maybe there’s another career option?
Arranging music – hmmmm, more along the “acting” and “singing” lines?
I’ve never really just let myself be creative for the sake of being creative. Somewhere along the lines, I lumped myself into the “smart girl” category and let myself get carried away by thoughts of using my smarts to make money, and then feeling utterly let down by the fact that although I probably could use my smarts to make cashola, I would likely want to poke my eyeballs with a fork if I subjected myself to that, day in and day out.
So, instead, it appears I have leaped from the “smart girl” category into the “creative girl” category, and now I’m rolling all sorts of creative business ideas through my brain and getting frustrated and cranky with figuring out how to make money from those. When did my world become all about looking smart and/or making money?? It seems to be the overruling law of my life. For like, EVAR.
I have rarely let myself be creative for the sake of being creative – I’ve always had an ulterior motive. Which, ultimately, is so unbelievably smothering to my poor old creative self.
So, I started this post with the intention of talking about something else entirely (still based in the world of creativity), but look where I’ve ended up (well, really, you have no comparison because you didn’t know where I was going in the first place). BUT, I will point out that it does feel just a little bit wonderful to let my creative side just blab onto the cyberpages, destination unknown.
Apparently creativity doesn’t need a fucking roadmap, so maybe I should just stop trying to make one. Just be creative.