By Brenda Riojas, I Start Wondering columnist
What a joy to wake each morning with new possibilities. Every day is a gift. Every day our creative spirits can give us the spark we need to address whatever stands before us, be it a new project or challenges with health, home, work. The reality for some of us is that we have allowed our creative spirits to go dormant.
In The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint Exupéry, the narrator shares how he was discouraged from pursing his artistic side. “The grown-ups’ response, this time,” he said about a series of his drawings, “was to advise me to lay aside my drawings of boa constrictors, whether from the inside or the outside, and devote myself instead to geography, history, arithmetic, and grammar.”
He continued, “That is why, at the age of six, I gave up what might have been a magnificent career as a painter.”
Re-engaging Your Creative Passions
How many of us gave up pursuing a passion such as art, music, dance, writing or some other interest because we listened to the pull towards what others considered more practical? Or how many of us at some point lost our confidence because of someone’s criticism? Many of our schools are guilty of squashing creativity. When budget cuts come, the arts are the first to go, and when it comes to testing, students too often are taught there is only one answer. That is not the reality in life, where multiple solutions are possible if we are willing to look for them.
I have my children to thank for awakening my creative spirit. Raising children and working full time prompted me to find creative ways not only to organize our lives but to make sure we valued each moment. I especially wanted to create an environment in our home where my son and daughter could explore their interests. Little did I know this would fuel my own interest on the subject for more than 20 years.
A Formula for Creativity
Over the years I have organized my notes on what I have learned into the following formula, B (P5) = Aha!
So let’s start with the B, which is Believe. Bottom line it starts with how we see ourselves. Psychologist Albert Bandura’s theory on self-efficacy maintains that our self-perceptions determine our actions. Hence, for our creative spirits to soar in unlimited circumstances we need to believe we are creative. The rest is a journey of passion, curiosity, risk taking and action, which are the five Ps in the equation. We will cover the five Ps (play, place, perspective, prospecting and percolation) in future columns.
A Dali-ance with Creativity
For now, let’s take a lesson from Salvador Dali who woke up ready to put his creative self to work. “Every morning when I wake up,” he said, “I experience an exquisite joy – the joy of being Salvador Dali – and I ask myself in rapture: What wonderful things this Salvador Dali is going to accomplish today?”
What wonderful things will you accomplish?
To get your creativity flowing:
Why not borrow Salvador Dali’s quote and fill in your name at the start of your day.
“Every morning when I wake up, I experience an exquisite joy – the joy of being ______________ – and I ask myself in rapture: What wonderful things this______________ is going to accomplish today?”
Connect with Brenda on Twitter @brendarioja