21 January 2010

Some thoughts on Creativity...

At, creativity is defined as:
“Having the ability or power to create (adj): Human beings are creative animals


One who displays productive originality (noun)


The ability to transcend traditional ideas, rules, patterns, relationships, or the like, and to create meaningful new ideas, forms, methods, interpretations, etc.; originality, progressiveness, or imagination (noun)”

I found this video on creativity at Portabellopixie and it got me thinking...

When people look at me always mucking about with something (cards, sewing, crochet, drawing, cooking etc...) they almost always say things like “that’s very nice, but I couldn’t do that... I’m not creative” or “I don’t have time to do things like that” or “I’ve got no imagination” etc...
It’s so frustrating! Everyone can create and we probably all do on a daily basis, we just don’t think of it as creating.  It also doesn't take long to do little activities.  Most people take some time to watch TV in the evenings, even if it is just the news.  I find that TV watching time is the perfect time for me to work on my little projects and still be spending a bit of time with my husband.  Like the video suggests, we were mean't to create, it is in our make up.

My husband does not consider himself to be creative, he is a very practical person, but one of the first Christmas presents I received from him was an absolutely beautiful wall display unit made of native NZ wood and stainless steel. He had designed and made it himself especially to fit my TV and objects d’art in my living room (this was before we were married). It was the best present ever!

Singing, playing a musical instrument, cooking, baking... all these require creativity. Even just doodling while you are on the phone is creating something. I think all humans need to create on some level. It’s amazing what a bit of creativity does to calm your mind and stimulate your brain activity... think of it as clearing your head and relaxing your mind and shutting out all the stresses of work and living for a little while. In fact, I think if we all took a bit of time out to do something creative that we enjoy every day, our work productivity and our general happiness levels would probably increase too!

I also think that it is important to involve kids in creative activities from an early age. Things like drawing, painting, playing with play-dough, papier mache, sewing, baking, making cards, playing with lego etc... All these are great activities for kids and it’s not hard to set them up with their projects while you work on your own grown-up projects alongside them. From playing with my god-daughters, I think creative activities can be great for teaching kids how to finish things they start, how to entertain themselves, and how to tidy up after themselves among other things. I hope that if and when I have kids I can make the time to have lots of creative time with them.  I know they get some of this at school and pre-school, but it's just not the same (and not as rewarding) as actually spending the time with them yourself.

When I was little I had this great set of books called "The Rainy Day Activity Books."  They were fantastic!  They had little projects in them I could do by myself and also bigger activities to do with my parents.  They weren't all creative activities, there were some puzzles and some science projects, but really they were hugely entertaining, and I bet they gave Mum some time to do her own thing for a bit too.

Here is an interesting excerpt from the Creative Woman newsletter I just received this week (they must have read my mind)...
“According to a recent survey by the Craft & Hobby Association (CHA), self-described crafters listed health as one of the top five reasons they work on a favorite craft.
Just imagine what would happen if doctors actually begin prescribing crafting as a remedy for depression, stress and anxiety! They would confirm what we crafting ladies already know: Crafting can have powerful effects on the body and mind!”

So that’s my two cents on creativity... The bottom line is that we are ALL creative in some way or another. Drawing or sewing or baking may not be your thing, but there are thousands of other crafts to choose from and just think of the health benefits!

Arabella Chickie in Palma de Mallorca

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