How to Be Creative

In Pursuit of Creative Living

So often, we daydream about creativity. We imagine ourselves taking our kids to a new park, cooking up an exotic meal, actually creating a craft that we see on Pinterest. Lately, I dream of walking to the end of my neighborhood and instead of turning around to head home, hiking right into the woods. I can feel my lungs expanding. Hear the birds calling. Anxieties calming. Cold waters pooling together and trickling down the hill alongside me.

Creative daydreams live in a strange tension. They provide us with vision and help us root out the ideas that live inside of us. And at the same time, they give us just enough of a glimpse of our deepest desires that, oftentimes, we feel satisfied enough that we’ve even dreamt them up. No need for action. No need to go the extra mile.

Wasn’t the creative act of dreaming it up enough?

Lately, for me, it hasn’t been. I want more than dreaming. I want my senses to be awakened. My passions inspired. My heart to be full and my mind to be satisfied in unexpected ways.

So I’ve decided to take a 5 week journey to infuse creativity into my life in renewed ways. My brave journey into creativity has a simple mission:

Do one creative thing every day.

Big Magic - Elizabeth GilbertMy first brave creative act was to start reading Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert. I started it in the grocery store parking lot while my two kids were asleep in their carseats and my partner was getting our food for the week. Then all night last night–as I woke every two hours or so to feed my newborn son–I recalled the lessons of the first 50 pages and knew that my second creative act would be write this blog post.

Fear and creativity are conjoined twins. We will nearly always feel fear when embarking on new creative adventures. Ideas come to us and if we say yes, we enter into a contract to see them through. Creativity isn’t about perfection, acceptance, or winning. It’s about seeking inspiration and joy.

For me, it’s about experiencing–and not just dreaming up–my creative ideas. Awakening the senses. Fighting laziness. Feeling impassioned and inspired. Writing this post has given me joy that I haven’t felt in a while–likely because so much of my work involves crafting other people’s stories. The next five weeks, it’s my turn.

How about you? When do you feel the “big magic” of creative living? Does your creativity live only in your dreams? What’s one action you could take today to bring those dreams to life?


Read Part One of My Creative Living Journey!

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