Seeing the world through our creative self

“Creativity requires faith. Faith requires that we relinquish control.”

– Julia Cameron

It’s an oft-stated maxim that we’re all creative at heart, but how many of us delve back to our early childhood to understand why creativity (and play) brought us so much pleasure?

For me, being creative shouldn’t be confined to something you do outside of work. Instead, it should be intrinsic to what you do and where you work. However, take a look at your average workplace. It’s almost never about creativity (unless of course that’s your sine qua non). It’s always about, well…work. But, imagine a world where you were allowed to doodle, play games, daydream and wander aimlessly.

It’s not only short-sighted, it also misses the bigger picture: people who enjoy their work and where they work are happier and more productive. Oh sure, there’s lot of ifs,  buts and maybes — and I have zero credentials to back me up save perhaps 30+ years’ work experience — but, all I know, is the few times I was able to be creative, i.e. be myself, I delivered my best work.

I’m not saying that people wouldn’t be inclined to push things a little (“Who wants to work anyway?”), but introducing an environment where creativity, play and fun held sway would be a game changer. (I’m well aware of the ubiquitous nerd-scape where IT and design-led companies have grasped this nettle but why is it confined to only these sectors?)

The bigger picture

Through creativity we come alive to who we truly are. Absent that life is purposeless save the premise that money begets money begets things begets unhappiness.

I recognise this post’s not in my usual vein, but something that’s become very real for me is that in reconnecting with my creative self, I’ve learnt more about myself than years of reading, doing and striving. Of course, you still have to maintain a work/life balance but that shouldn’t mean you ignore your (innate) creative self.

The bottom line is that if you’re prepared to open a channel to your creativity and express that every day, it will only be a matter of time before you see the world through a different pair of eyes.

PS. Below is a doodle from Mark Boyes that sums up beautifully the idea that not only do we need to create but to recognise the person we’re becoming in the process.