Our Creative Core

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“The making of art is no different than prayer.” Rain Wilson

It is indeed true that I was often the last one to go to sleep at a slumber party. I also received checks in “self control” on my report card in elementary school. Last but not least, I was called “hyperactive” on a daily basis.

In fact, while I was home in New Jersey a couple of weeks ago, my brother, Rich, read a revealing and comical four page letter from my late father. In his own sweet and thoughtful way, he wrote about my mother “losing her head” when she agreed to host a slumber party at our home for my tenth birthday. Then he wrote in the same exact voice with which he spoke, “It actually went better than I thought it would, Lindsay was a bit hyper – that’s Lindsay.” He was right, there were times when I was like a fierce tornado of whirling energy causing a stir and leaving a trail of activity around me.

Now looking back at my youth, I prefer to use the words, enthusiastic and spirited to describe my energetic self. I also feel this tornado was really just my creativity searching for a way out!

Creativity has been a reoccurring theme in my life the past year. The other day, I listened to a TED talk about creativity by Sir Ken Robinson. In a funny and relaxed manner, he discusses the importance of creativity in our schools. He shares a story of another energetic little girl who struggled in her very mainstream school environment. Her mother had the sense that a performing arts school may be a better option for her. Once enrolled, she spent her days dancing and in turn flourished in this new, inspired surrounding. She is grown up now and is a professional and very accomplished choreographer.

I wonder how many children would benefit from this kind of education…a place where art and creativity is held in the highest regard and not as an elective or weekly activity? Personally, I think we could all benefit from more creative exploration in our schools as well as in our adult lives.

While we are busy worrying about raising test scores, especially in subjects like math and science, it seems our society is forgetting about the importance of creativity in relation to personal expression and innovation. The movers and shakers are first and foremost creators. They are brilliant because they know how to channel their imaginative intelligence.

Looking back at my own childhood, I reached a point where I started equating creativity with talent. I felt unless I demonstrated extreme potential in a certain area, it wasn’t worth pursuing. I now realize creating is more about the process than the finished product.

Creativity lives in the essence of our very being. Creativity is about making things, but it’s also about living artistically. It’s about the process we use to make choices and how we design our life.

It dawned on me recently as I was driving that some of the moments when I have felt the most depressed and lethargic were moments when I wasn’t engaging as fully with my creativity. I have always craved freedom and the ability to creatively inhabit my life, and I yearned to to find an outlet to express these imaginings. I thought that not having one particular medium was synonymous with not having an outlet.

In reality, almost anything can be an outlet for our creativity to breathe. Now I practice simply doing what I love and what feels good, regardless of what my inner critic or outer critics think. And creativity begets creativity, the more we create, the more the creative juices flow!

The other day a friend of mine said she had no artistic talent. Let me tell you, I have been to her daughters birthday parties and seen firsthand her elaborate and impressive table decorations. Even if I had all day and a guide instructing me along, I would not be able to make a table look like she does. I asked her if decorating was a source of joy for her and if this could be an outward expression of her creative genius? She had never thought about her knack for decorating as something creative.

Creativity is love and joy in action. When we are in this place, creating is liberating, healing, and playful. It is good for our health. When we are engaged in creative activity, we become one with our understanding of a deeper divinity, our highest self. These little apples of creative wonderfulness are meant to be explored and enjoyed, they just need us to take the initial bite.

If you would like more inspiration about creating, check out Julia Cameron’s, The Artist’s Way or her brand new companion book called The Artists Way for Parents; Raising Creative Children. http://www.planetsark.com is a colorful website too. Have FUN!

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13 thoughts on “Our Creative Core”

  1. Holy shit! How did I not know you were blogging? Beautiful and Brilliant! Of course. I’m aligned with everything you said. The first time (of many) that I watched Ken’s talk, I nearly floated into space. Imagine the possibilities. I just left Nico’s open house ~ and while I have nothing but sheer admiration of the teachers and administration there, it made me cringe. And anxious. Very. Anxious. There is so much bullshit homework that we are up till 10 every night and I honestly can’t see how 1/2 of it is relevant to the times we live in, much less the skills he’ll need for the future. Creativity takes courage. Creativity demands a willingness to question and experiment. Practices that don’t bode well. My greatest aim is to raise boys who sustain the courage to express their innate creativity as adults, and can think freely. Having said all that, I think we made the right move. Atlanta is a hotbed of creativity. Every day, we give thanks that we are here and laugh about how long it took us to get here. Eagerly awaiting your visit.

    1. Hi Annette!
      So happy you saw this because I think and hope you would resonate with this here ole blog I started. Yes! Creativity takes courage and courage takes vulnerability and every time I hit the “publish” button, I fear putting myself “out there.” You are missed. I am so happy you are all digging Atlanta, I am not surprised. And you are doing a fabulous job with your boys. Remember, your boys were the reason why I chose Montesorri. (4 years later and I am still not sure how to spell it!) Now Phoebe is there too, her first year. After witnessing your boys interact with kids so much younger than them with such kindness and heart, I wanted my boy to be where they were! We would love to come for a visit! I have a friend from school who is there too that I would love to hook you guys up with, she is an artist and a sweet soul! Please give everyone my love and thanks again for reading and responding! XO

  2. awesome lindsay! thanks for sharing yourself. it is a risk to put yourself out there, but i love it! of course, i love this post because i love creativity. i saw a neat lecture once on creativity and the divine by mathew fox. it was muy interesante and i think you would dig it. i think he may have a book on it. he talked about the different parts of the brain and how we are creative beings. even forming a sentence is an artform. also how humans use a lot of creativity for war. it is amazing how many things have been invented for war. anyway, it expanded my awareness on the subject.
    i also love the sufi take on creativity as a pathway to the divine. by connecting through creating, we also help others who listen to our music or look at our creations connect too.
    also yes!!! yes yes.. i love the art of decorating a table and other outlets.. all of them!
    i have been into hand lettering lately and it is bringing me back to my junior high bubble letter days! i love that to be creative you don’t need to be professional or good at it and it can be anything at all. the more i let go of what i think i should do or how something should come out, the better i can flow and the creations come out so much nicer.
    i am following you now and will enjoy reading whats to come 🙂

  3. Loved this!! My mind is always racing with thoughts of what if my girls were allowed to be more creative and spirited in their school environment…how they would blossom and flourish….so instead I try my best to nurture their creative selfs at home and remind them every chance I get that they are remarkable amazing young ladies!

    1. Jeane,
      Your daughters sound awesome and I am sure they are bursting with creative wonderfulness with you and Grahammy as their parents! I hope you are well and you are still making beautiful music. Sending you love and thanks for your reply. XO

  4. Hi Carolyn,
    You are an inspiration to me, Sister SOulja! I have always adored your artwork and how special for me to see your name on this blog. I have always known creativity to be an important part of life but I know it in a different way now. I feel it is as essential as any other activity. I am feeling the healing power or creativity so strongly, I just changed my specialization to creativity and innovation for my last year of my MA program. I still want to coach and help others but I want to do it from this vast wonderland of creativity. Thanks for you words, I appreciate them hugely! Also, I have another book I want to talk to you about…another children’s book, I would love your illustrations for!
    Love to you and your sweet ones,
    Lindsay

  5. that is really cool lindsay. avi’s mom is an art therapist and has done a lot of work with hospice patients. also, avi’s cousin was just visiting and she is doing her phd in music therapy in family therapy. it is really interesting stuff! i would love to hear what you are learning sometime. we could probably talk for a couple weeks straight! blessings and love! lets talk about children’s book. there is lots of creative movement happening in my life now. it is amazing how inspired and motivated i am but how little time i have to execute. that is ok though! i am happy to be staying connected atleast 🙂 love!!!! c

  6. …..this blossoming, this fire, this fierce and unrelenting questioning is inspiring…..the understanding of creativity is far from mainstream, and your down-to-earth and clear guidance will be greatly appreciated ‘out there’……I am so honored to be in the wings, watching you encourage healing…..much love to you warrior princess…..

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