a page from one of my art journals
I live in belief that creativity is the cornerstone of successful living. I know 'success' is personal to each of us. You might want to read this post. However, I guess (from my own personal inclinations) success for many means living a life we want to live: freedom to do what we want, live by our own rules, and fill our time with joful and pleasureable activities. It's not about money (for me), if all my time is given over to something joyless and tiring.
How then is creativity the cornerstone of success? BECAUSE I've realised (from years of writing CV's for people to gain employment) many of us aren't sure HOW to get creative in manifesting and creating doing what we love for a living. Where work becomes play and we get paid to be ourselves.
The best education we can ever give a person (in my book) is to foster in each of us how to THINK for ourselves and PROBLEM solve in life. ie. I need x to go do y or z - then the question becomes: WHAT DO I NEED TO DO TO CREATE THAT HAPPENING? And apply it to a real live situation. If we've been brought up to believe in 'pass' or 'fail' and getting the answer right or wrong, and most of the time has been spent at a desk 'thinking' and not 'doing' it's hard to get creative.
"I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand"
People often think; "well, I failed my exams in that subject therefore I can't get that job I want" (I know because I've worked with people in this situation for many years) and frequently they fall back, give up, and live life in quiet exasperation. What if you don't learn well on paper, or you had a bad exam day? - this isn't a true reflection of life, it's an imposed artificial situation. Let's get creative instead.
It went like this: making mistakes and 'failing' is a PRE-REQUISITE TO SUCCESS. If something DOESN'T work (given what you are trying to achieve), you move on to the next possible solution; you get creative. What if you were taught that ALL the solutions we need are in us and there are many ways or 'answers'?
If we were to stop thinking for a moment - current education systems encourage a lot of 'head' work - and were to DO something creative and active, we might find things get a little more interesting. Lateral thinking skills develop through: physical, emotional, interpersonal, artistic, musical subjects, and often these intelligences are not given the credence they deserve. The WORLD needs musical, physical , emotionally intelligent and, artistic people - there isn't ONE intelligence, there are many. There's a great ted's talk on this post.
What message did you get at school?
I didn't get this message at school though. It was about getting it academically RIGHT, ticking boxes and knowing if I gave enough 'right' (and regurgitated) answers at school I would have the relevant paperwork (exam certificates), to get a 'good' job spending my time working for some-one else's creation. What would I do if their values and ethos didn't resonate with mine? how could I create a job that filled me with excitement and passion, and I got paid for that? What if I was taught how to think up the answers, the solutions, and was equipped with the creative skills that allowed me to CREATE MY OWN LIFE AS I WOULD LIKE TO LIVE IT. That is the education that I believe is needed now.
Life is lived by doing not by memorising - this dulls the mind not ignites it. Doing is the start of making things happen, how and what you do is the creative part. The first thing we all do in a day is get up. What we decide to do next is not about pass or fail, it's about making it WORK given what we want to achieve.
" . . . knowing is not enough; we must apply. Being willing is not enough; we must do"
- Leonardo Da Vinci
try this experiment:
Answer the following:
1. what would you like to achieve right now, in your life?
2. write down three ways you can go about beginning to achieve this (you will have ideas and answers)
3. now you've thought about it and gathered some ideas, go and DO something. My ideas for doing which I think are MOST effective for bringing about physical, tangible results are these:
- go out and do what a person who is already doing what you want to do/achieve. You know, DRESS UP, pretend, take on the persona, take an action, speak to them even . . . .
- collage it, draw it, paint it to create a visual rendition of what you want to achieve so you can SEE it in your minds eye. You are quite literally drawing, collaging or painting it in to creation.
THESE creative activities have more chance in bringing forth what you wish for (along with self belief, mindful thinking etc etc) and are hopefully more pleasureable than sitting working at something we don't like. Thinking about it alone probably won't, nor will thinking in pass and fail terms, and that getting it right or wrong are the measure of EVERYTHING (often they are unhelpful mental structures that society has created to keep people supporting the status quo - if you feel the status quo does not support you or people in general anymore then DO something different and create your own beliefs and mental structures).
"I am convinced that creativity is a priori to the integrity of the Universe and that life is regenerative and conformity meaningless."
- Richard Buckminster Fuller
Getting creative about how we bring about a life we wish for is usually the most fulfilling and successful.
You don't have to agree with me, but I speak from my own experiences in work, life, and parenting. You might want to read: what I learnt at art school (and it wasn't painting).
A new course:
The above is why I am in the planning and writing stages of a week long intensive (on-line) course in journalling dreams - a visual, creative play into acknowledging our dreams, for later this year. I have done this and know how powerful it can be. If you want to find out more and when, subscribe to my newsletter either here or in my left-hand column (there is a secret 'gift' element to this course too ;)
Here's to a creative, fufilling, happy life happening for you. . . . .
check out my interview over at: notes from the edge blog (by another Amelia!)
The places are being filled on the on the experimental art e-course - please do join us here if you want to experiment with art and your creativity.