5 things I learned about creativity from my son
1. Anything can be used as a drawing utensil and canvas (for example, much of my son’s work is string cheese on window pane).
It’s easy to find yourself procrastinating indefinitely while waiting for everything to be perfect. (i.e. your vow to start painting again when the house is clean, and find all your supplies, and your child sleeps through the night ) Let’s face it — you have kids now! It’s highly likely that you’re gonna miss the 10 second window when the stars are perfectly aligned. Sometimes, just getting started today in a small imperfect way, will get you back on the path to reclaiming your creativity.
2. Not everything created, built, or destroyed, needs to have been done so for a reason.
One time, I asked my 2 year old why he colored the apple blue. “Because I like blue” was his response. As we get older we develop our inner critic and let that voice drown out the excitement and integrity of the creative experience. We worry that others will judge us or our projects won’t turn out “right” and we decide it’s better not to start at all. But, really who cares!? There are no right answers. Like my two year old, just do what you like!
3. The fun of painting is not always reflected in the finished product, which is often a muddy brown, soggy, pile of paper.
No matter the outcome, you’ll have fun making creative work. The journey is the destination! (By the way, If you aren’t having fun doing it, you should stop. )
4. Creativity will solve all of your problems.
I followed a trail of band-aid wrappers the other day to the scene of a car track triage. Cheap broken plastic matchbox car tracks were no match to the fix-all adhesive of a band-aid. Despite the depleted band-aid stash, I was impressed by my son’s creative problem solving skills and remembered that creative juices not only produces great works of art, but once flowing, can solve everyday problems as well.
5. Creativity can be achieved in 5-7 minute spurts when the inspiration strikes—a quick drawing here and there, for instance between train-play and snack time.
Sometimes we get bogged down with the preconception that making art takes a lot of time. But sometimes the best ideas come out in quick sketches of inspiration and not long, arduous deliberation, and can often be expressed with simple means. If you’ve followed 1-4 above (leave perfection behind, don’t give a #$&! what others think, and have fun) you’ll find this much easier.
Want to regain creative inspiration? Mommikin serves up weekly, short, creative challenges for busy moms designed to be help get the juices flowing while also helping you express your most frustrating, amazing experiences as a mom. Check out this week’s current challenge and get started today!