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When creativity calls

Sometimes its just a hunch to do something.

Sometimes it’s a ‘I know!’ or a ‘I have an idea!’

Sometimes it's standing in quiet contemplation for a while, zoning out into a space far away that envisages things coming together… sometimes it’s an impulse to release energy from stiff limbs.

Sometimes it’s an urge to make colour, mess, expand beyond the imagined edges of your energy space.

Sometimes it's envisaging something in a space that is currently unfulfilled and knowing you can create something to make it look different.

Sometimes it’s connecting the dots of an idea to produce something that just feels right.

Sometimes it's hands in dough or seeing waves in a sugar and margarine mix, believing in the outcome through an imagined sense of taste and smell.

Sometimes it feels like a calling and sometimes it feels like a quiet whisper… hence why, it is important to unplug from our phones… walk in nature and listen to our thoughts solo, to amplify that kind of internal noise so we can hear it loud and clear...

I’m currently residing in the ‘Autumn’ of my cycle. I’m pre-menstrual. This phase in particular gets a bad rep… it’s when your heart and mind speaks the truth… often unfiltered and loudly. It’s also the week where I meet my inner critic face on, my fears, the annoyance with myself and others… but mainly myself. It’s also when my creativity is most lucid, transparent, clear, un-shackled. It’s when I honestly believe I could write and paint all day every day and that I want to shout from the rooftops the benefits of creativity to anyone who will listen. I’m most likely to talk passionately and with conviction about what I do.

The creativity killer

Ironically, although I choose to voice this passion on externally, it is also a time when social media is particularly triggering for me. Despite an inner sense of freedom of my own creativity, the containment of the platform, namely Instagram, results in me feeling like an incredibly tiny fish (a tiny, sluggish, grey fish) in a massive pond of talented, rainbow coloured octopuses with potential, glowing energy pulsating out of every tentacle, they feel bigger than me, faster, more impactful, further reaching, just better.

Creativity is stopped in its tracks by comparison and that feeling of scarcity; the sense of feeling that there isn’t enough to be shared around, is an absolute killer to our potential and growth.

It’s is an unhealthy place to find myself, especially of an evening leaning on my kitchen worktop with a pre-dinner glass of wine and a bag of co-op honey roasted cashews in hand, (other brands available but not nearly as good) as I loop, wander and burrow around the rabbit holes of Instagram stories until I lose myself completely to their bigger missions, confidence, beauty, excitement and often, incredible art! But if we pull the focus back out for a second… and dare not wander into random strangers missions, we cut through the confusing voices tempting us back into procrastination and fear. You know the voices… the loud echoey ones telling us it’s silly to even pick up a paintbrush when you’ve only got fifteen minutes to spare; better to sort the washing pile out instead, to hold off from writing that email about something that you feel very deeply about, to put off that project because really it’s far too big for us… best let someone more capable do it instead… maybe leave it a little bit longer, for a time when bravery comes knocking!

Creativity can flow through us in many different, far reaching ways and although I use my ideas to encourage, I would hate it to feel like a measuring stick to what your creativity looks like.

For me, coming to the page in writing, mark making, talking on an Instagram ‘Live,’ using my voice and showing my face is accompanied by fear (always) and that is why I surround myself with a ridiculous amount of carnelian crystals and bracelets, blue tac quotes on my studio walls, scribble mantras in my journal from thought leaders like Brene Brown and try to absorb only the supportive words of those I love, that demonstrate courage regularly. My hope is that when I release my new workshops to the world they will encourage women to find their own voice and uniqueness that isn’t overly perfected or designed to look a particular way. My mission is to push away from the perfection that keeps us small and quiet.

In my mind creativity is not always me squinting at a beautiful white canvas sat proudly on an easel, beret on tilt with paint brushes sticking out of a oil paint stained apron. It is me sat with a cup of tea at a messy table with the Encanto sound track echoing in the other room, tiny stick of charcoal in hand, with something on my mind that desperately wants to be released to help me understand it better. Creativity helps me understand myself better… it takes a magnifying glass to my kooks, annoyances and asks why.

It helps provide me with ideas and solutions, which is why I truly believe in it. More so than a self help book. I've read a lot of those. Believe me.

There doesn’t have to be a reason to be creative, you may feel you want to sell it but it may be that thing you dabble with to feel a little more like you after having a baby, it may be building Lego as a way of comfortably connecting with your little ones, taking a photo of something in nature that drew your attention, it may be arranging flowers in a vase that you treated yourself to.

By acting on small creative impulses and infusing your life with it daily I truly believe it not only makes us happier but it creates a window through which to better view ourselves.

By commanding anything creative, a garden spade, a Lego block, a whisk, a decorators brush; it offers a sense of agency and control in your life which when we care so deeply for other people, as women, may feel lacking.

So although my 'Autumn' can feel burdensome, to unleash this creative surge and allow it to reign free, can create a confidence not only with my creativity but the way it interconnects with everything around me and the way I respond to the world.

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