Your Creativity Is Not An Indulgence

Your Creativity Is Not An Indulgence

Creativity is not an indulgence. It is central to life and holds the keys to your sense of power and joy.

You don’t have time to be creative

If you’re like me, you have ideas for stories you want to write or art you want to make all the time but the demands of the things you have to do first get in the way and leave you too flat and burned out to be creative.

How often do you find yourself saying, “I’ll do it this evening,” or, “I’ll do it when I’ve finished the housework”? But that time doesn’t come. This leads you into a downwards spiral. You’re not being creative, and so you don’t feel creative.

You start to doubt if you really have any skill or talent at all. Surely if you did, you’d be writing anyway? Or painting? Or starting that creative project that’s waiting for you in the shed?

Better to forget your creative dreams, the voice of reason whispers in your mind. Better to just focus on the work that pays the bills and do your job.

But is it better?

Creativity isn’t sensible work

For some of us, it’s so long since we felt the benefit of experiencing our creative power that we’ve forgotten what it is. In our childhood, we heard the message that we were just playing, or wasting our time when we were writing stories or drawing imaginary creatures.

As we grew, we learned that we should be doing something ‘more important’ or ‘more useful’ instead. Our creative expressions were classified as play and therefore didn’t matter much.

Then we got a sensible job in the ‘real world’ and forgot about how much we loved to write stories. We forgot about the joy of spreading paint around a canvas or colouring with a vast array of fibre-tipped pens.

We gave up our creative dreams. And we lost access to a large portion of our power and joy in the process. Because that’s what creativity is.


What if we remember and insist that art is central and dignified and important to the human experience?

Julia Cameron

The connection between creativity and joy

As you exercise your creative ‘muscle’, a sense of joy and power gradually returns to your life. I don’t know why it operates this way, but it does.

If I spend 20 minutes drawing, I believe I can tackle 4 hours of admin and paperwork at my desk.

Writing one insightful article will spur me on to fold the laundry and clean the bathrooms with ease! It’s practically magic.

It’s ALCHEMY.

As we pour our creative thoughts into a vessel that expresses them, we turn the simple matter of everyday life into gold.

Creativity is a survival skill

And when you build a whole practice of this in your life, over a period of time, you create a body of work that is proof of your creative power. Next time the doubts come knocking at the door, you have something to show them.

That’s not trivial or ‘less important’ than the responsibilities of your job or family life. That’s medicine for your soul.

When you see it this way, you start to realise how much you NEED to keep exercising your creativity. You see it as a survival skill, not just some childish foolishness. You begin to believe that your creativity is NOT an indulgence.

You might even make your creativity a PRIORITY.

Forget the washing up tonight. Hide the telly remote.

Dig out a notebook and pen and just write.

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