The path to creativity unfolds in various ways over a lifetime of experiences, flaws et all.
In Part 2 of this series, I write about the risks of creativity – how being a hostage to certainty disrupts creativity. I have learned that with creative resourcefulness, we lean into the courage and curiousity to pursue the unknown – a fertile place for learning and discovery.
In Part 1 of this series, I recalled the often chaotic yet joyful experience of creativity as a child – the freedom to explore with “an openness to discovery, a courageous pursuit to explore outrageous ideas, getting hands dirty and just revelling in the joy of creation, flaws and all!”
Flaws and all. Flaws. What is it about imperfection that leads us to feel that we must be perfect? We are human. We are inherently imperfect.
The pursuit of perfection in my adult life has led me to many a stumble, block and fall! Yet, it wasn’t always like that for me.
I recall writing poetry as a child and youth. I wrote with passion, from the heart, from places unknown. It felt as though the words were streaming through me rather than from me. I rarely edited the words and phrases. I felt they were just right. Just right – neither perfect, nor imperfect.
Creativity in writing for me was a healing process, a release of sorts and, very personal. Creating was, is, a present moment experience. The creation in the making is expressed in the moment and from neither the past nor the future. Especially in my darker moments, when life felt so dark and mysteriously eerie, I wrote from a present moment feeling. I still have those scribbles on the scraps of paper, in journals and across pencil sketches of my imaginations just as they were expressed.
In my early teens, this creative pursuit of expressing in the moment shifted to creativity with a mission. I wanted to write a birthday poem for my best friend. It was then that I started sharing my creativity in writing. And, it was then that I started holding back for perfection. I wrote, rewrote, edited, revised, erased and started over, tuned and fine-tuned.
“It just isn’t coming out right”, I said to myself.
Another way of saying: “It’s not perfect!”
The consequence of the judgement of: “It’s not perfect, keep going.”, can be crippling. Crippling when it comes from inner and outer judgment and often, a perceived outer judgement that has the creator holding back for perfection.
In the quest for creativity, there are many lessons to learn. I have learned to trust in the process, that creativity is a gift and when the right moment, the right present moment comes, the creativity comes with it.
For sure, we write about past experiences and future desired experiences. I firmly believe that taking those experiences within, making them present, is a creative strategy. It is as though the feeling, story, memory, thought, idea, innovation, is real, true and neither perfect nor imperfect. It is then that the creative product is imaginative, innovative, original, inspiring and visionary.
What lessons have you learned in the quest for creativity?