“We are all creative. Creativity is the hallmark human capacity that has allowed us to survive thus far. Our brains are wired to be creative, and the only thing stopping you from expressing the creativity that is your birthright is your belief that there are creative people and uncreative people and that you fall in that second category.”
—Shelley Carson, Your Creative Brain
We are born with voices and bodies that want to express, to be heard and seen, and delighted in. As babies, we play with the range of sounds our mouths are capable of. We invent new combinations of vowels and consonants, creating a language all our own. We move our bodies in every way we can—wobbly at first and then more intentional as feet are investigated by mouths and every new texture is something to be smeared into glorious new forms of mess.
As children, we sing big and bold. We put on dance shows. We paint for the joy of color and the sensual wonder of creation. Then, sadly, somewhere along the way many of us get the message that we didn’t do it right. That we can’t sing or dance or make art because it doesn’t fit someone else’s standard of what those things mean. Our creative birthright gets squashed under someone else’s wounded projections. We learn to put our creativity, our freedom of expression into a room deep inside of us where it can’t get out because we can’t bear the hurt of another rejection. But the thing is our creativity is intricately tied to our soul, to the very essence of who we are. When we lock it away, we lose touch with something vital to the fullness of who we are.
I want you to know YOUR creativity, your self-expression is a gift. That it is uniquely yours and as such is a miraculous gift no one can bring into the world but you. I want to tell you that you have every right in the world to share your creativity in exactly the way it comes out of you. All the imperfections of it are part of what makes it beautiful. You have a right to have your creativity witnessed and received with unconditional love because creativity is not about the product—it is about the very act of creation itself.
How does your creativity want to be expressed in your life? In this day? In this moment? How do you long to express yourself?
If the idea of creativity seems too big, then I invite you to start small. Write a haiku. Do a 30-second dance with your pinky finger or your toes. Whistle a tune. Sing in the shower or car. Add a new spice to your cooking. Make a simple sculpture of rocks and sticks next time you are in nature. Draw a picture on the fogged up windows of your car. Doodle.
Whenever I think of small moments of creative expression I remember this wonderful scene from the movie Garden State. May it inspire your freedom to be your original self.
And if you feel drawn to explore your authentic creativity and heal blocks to your self-expression at our upcoming Creative Acts of Power retreat, we still have a few spaces available! Also, see Classes and Groups for information about my Self-Compassion Mindfulness Group and my Radical Acceptance of Our Emotions series!