Updated: Jan 31, 2022
Do you remember when you were young and drawing was as natural as breathing? It was your go-to activity. An adult would hand you a piece of paper and some crayons, and you would just...draw. Without thinking about whether it was okay to have a purple sun or whether your lopsided house looked like the ones on your street. You might have even strayed from the norms of the earth, just for fun. Blue grass? Why not! Three-headed chicken? Sure! You felt free to create and experiment without self-judgment or over-analysis.
At some point, you changed. Maybe an art teacher made everyone in your class draw the exact same thing, and yours wasn't as precise as your classmates - and your teacher noticed. Or maybe a family friend told you you could never be an artist. Maybe you tried to draw a portrait of your first boyfriend for his birthday but he thought it looked more like his pet lizard. Whatever the reason, most adults put aside their natural creative tendencies at some point, and "grew up."
Newsflash: those tendencies are still inside you. They didn't get thrown out with the trash, or float away on the winds of adulthood. Just as all children are innately creative, so are all adults. It may not feel like it, but you are a creative genius. You have it in you. You just need to find that little artist inside you and encourage her to come out to play.
Finding your creativity isn't just for the fun of making three-headed chickens, although it does bring joy into your days. Creativity helps you find new and unusual solutions to problems and challenges. It can boost your immune system and reduce stress. People who practice creativity have a more positive outlook on life. Creativity adds dimension to your thinking and strategizing and relationships and self-care. In a nutshell, there are no downsides to nourishing your creativity.
If you are not sure how to find your creativity, here are three thoughts.
First of all, start small. You don't need to paint the Mona Lisa today. Just start with one small thing. Scribble on a paper or dance to your favorite song.
Second, Do one small creative thing tomorrow. And then the next day. And then the day after that.
Third, in fact you never need to paint the Mona Lisa or anything else at all. Take the pressure off. There is no one or right way to be creative. You will find your own way. There are a million and one ways to think and be creative, and only some of them have to do with what most people think of as "art."
If you need help thinking of creative activities, I send a new activity each week to my newsletter community. (You can join AND get my 5 Creative Activities in Under 5 Minutes right here.) You can also see what I've posted in the past here on Creative Musings and bookmark the page to come back any time. Also, there are lots of resources out there. Search the internet, or just search your mind. You have an infinite well of ideas available right inside your brain.
I'll get your started with today's Daily Creative. It's a drawing activity, but don't be scared. Remind yourself that there is no right or wrong way to do this. No teacher or boyfriend will look at it. It is not your application to college. It is a tool. A tool to wake up your mind and help you create.
Today's activity is actually widely used in design and corporate settings to stimulate creative thinking. And I think it's just plain fun.
Grab 2 pieces of paper and a pencil. I also suggest grabbing something round like a jar top or glass. Something no wider than two to three inches. You will be using this to make circles on your page. You can freehand these as well if you'd like, although I find myself thinking more freely when my circles are uniform.
Take your round item and use it to make 30 circles on your papers. If you have a large piece of paper you might be able to fit all circles on it, but on an 8 1/2 x 11 paper it's impossible to fit them.
Set a timer for three minutes.
Turn each circle into a recognizable object. Examples might be a smiley face or a clock.
At the end of three minutes, see how many circles you were able to finish. Which were the easiest, and which the hardest? Which ideas you came up with surprised you? How did you get past any moments of being stuck? How could you use this activity to think creatively about something in your life?