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Creative grown-ups PDF Print E-mail
Saturday, 27 June 2009 12:58

Everyone starts off in life being creative and then we get to the age/stage where others take our paper and crayons off us, tell us not to daydream - and then we move away from it. Remember how the chair was a pony; a box was a house; a brush was a guitar; how you loved to sing and skip and how your imagination could make you do anything at all?  Sometimes though, wings are clipped and creativity often stifled.  We take up careers and roles without much thought and then we find that for whatever reason, we have squandered our creative energies by over investing in the lives, hopes, dreams and plans of others.  We get stuck in the rut and routine of life instead of tasting all it has to offer.  Fear plays a part in this.

Often we sense that we are more creative than we allow ourselves to be but are unable to effectively tap into it. We may have great ideas and wonderful dreams but are unable to fulfill them and our lives can then feel somehow flat.  Sometimes we have specific creative longings to, for example – learn to play the piano, paint, take up acting classes or write.  For others, the goal might be more diffuse.  We hunger for what we might call creative living – an expanded sense of creativity in our business and personal lives, in sharing with our children, partner or friends. We may even want to live in a yurt but worry about what 'others' might think!

Denying ourselves opportunities for self expression or for living a creative life can lead to feelings of anger, resentment and frustration, all feelings that people can 'depress'. This doesn't allow people to 'think bigger' or beyond the day to day.

There are many definitions of creativity including:-

  • Seeing things in a different, quirky, unique way (including problem solving) and having an open mind
  • A thinking process which stimulates ideas and solves problems
  • Spirituality
  • Innovation – “The practical application of moving ideas forward effectively”
  • New ways of processing the same information
  • Creativity is about ‘flow’, the ability to lose yourself in an activity
  • Madness!

Two key elements are:-

Imagination

Einstein said that imagination was more important than knowledge and I agree.  Without the ‘what ifs’, we would still be living in caves.  For example, what imaginative person thought, “What if I rub these sticks together”?  Fire of course!  Would this work better without angles?  Result – the wheel?  These of course were answers to problems then, as post-its and cats-eyes are today.

Questioning

The need to ask and come up with answers, opinions and solutions to the ‘who, what, where, when, how and whys’ of life come easier if we allow our creativity to come into play.

Why is creativity important?

Giving time to our natural creativity and need for self-expression is vital to our health, both mental and physical. Studies show that the creative process can slow the heartbeat and even reduce blood pressure.  More than this, creativity challenges us to learn new things, build our confidence and self esteem and provides exercise for the body and the mind.

Creativity in its many forms can improve mood and motivation, with a sense of achievement likely to follow.  It can also provide a sense of identity.

Allowing and welcoming creative activity can tap into real potential and stimulate flexible thinking. There are direct benefits for life skills, including problem solving, coping with the challenges of life and also stress.

Opposite – stagnation and apathy

What do you already do that’s creative? What desire or opportunity is there for you with any of the following, either as ‘maker’ or participant?  For example:

Singing, dancing, writing, drawing, design, gardening, playing music, photography, cooking, theatre, comedy or poetry.

How can we become more creative?

(We only need one person to believe in us (if not ourselves) or one approving comment to encourage us.

  • Start telling yourself, “It’s never too late”
  • Instead of waiting until you make enough money to do something you really love, start to make plans now
  • Start telling yourself that your dreams matter and are important
  • Ignore any negative comments from others - they may have their own agendas.
  • Stop telling yourself that nurturing your creativity is a luxury and that you should be grateful for what you already have
  • Deal with the fear and strengthen your confidence
  • Be curious
  • Question
  • Challenge
  • Change surroundings
  • Use imagination daily
  • Ask ‘what if’
  • Have an open mind
  • Add your own sparkle to an old idea
  • Have a ‘creative corner’ in work for ideas, suggestions, schemes and ask for constructive feedback to help develop
  • Foolishness is good!
  • Logic and inhibitions can block creativity.  So can habit, familiarity, stress – break the routine!
  • Play; Discuss; Debate!
  • Learn to trust and listen to your instincts
  • Laughter, passion, need, chaos, problems, mistakes are all springboards to being creative.
  • Each day, start to do something different or………………the same things differently, even something as simple as the route to work or what you have for breakfast.

 “Leap and the net will appear”

The time has arrived to look at your neglected dreams and whilst there is no quick fix, there is a way forward (or backwards) to discovering or re-discovering the creative you.  Society needs inspired, enthusiastic, brave and creative people!

Do let us known how you go on or contact us with your own ideas and suggestions, we would love to her from you.We aim to have workshops on creativity running later in the year so do keep checking the site.

 

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our mission

To encourage 'can do' attitudes, creative thinking and action, to see the role of the Arts and Creativity being recognised and valued, thus playing a key part in creating healthy, vibrant, enterprising communities, and to ensure that doing all of the above is as enjoyable as possible! as enjoyable as possible!

our vision

Urban Creatives' vision is to see The Arts, in all its formats, being used as a way to release untapped potential and creativity for the benefit of all communities across the Wirral peninsula.