Most people don’t know this about me, but creativity benefits my sense of well-being. It is something that I must do to remain sane. I have a very hectic, almost crazy life (which I love) but sometimes, it’s easy for me to get swallowed up by depression or feel like a failure. For the last 18 years, I’ve been parenting a daughter with autism. She’s added a quality to my life that nothing else could, yet, there are times I really find myself feeling like I’m doing most everything wrong. When I pick up a pen, draw something, or try to brush letter, I feel that stuff melt away. It’s very healing for me to create.
Creativity Benefits As a Support System
This week I was dealing with a lot of social workers, the school system, and other county places. I homeschool my kids which most people either love or hate. It does seem like everyone has a say about how I parent my children, especially my daughter with autism, because going the homeschool route is often seen as neglect for some reason. But in my case, it was the school system that failed us, so homeschool has been a lifeline for us and a place where I can give individual attention to her needs and set up private services to meet our goals.
Society and people I run into often aren’t very supportive. I often feel like I’m doing everything wrong. When I create something, no one is telling me I suck. No one is belittling my efforts. Even if I really do suck, there is encouragement in the art community that I don’t find as a mom of special needs daughter. It’s the one place I feel like I’m normal. It’s the one place where I can breath the same air as everyone else.
When you create something and it makes others happy, or it makes yourself happy, that is never wrong. Creating is often something that others support willingly. There are many communities and meet up groups and classes dedicated to those who want to create. It’s as if the community as a whole welcomes those of us who aren’t perfect. That is something I truly appreciate about creatives.
Creating is Therapeutic
When I created this blog, I never wanted to get personal about my life. I didn’t want to share my struggles or lay my life out for others to see and judge. But I felt compelled to write this because I wonder how many other people have turned to creativity to help them. I wonder how many others have found their callings and been thrusted into their own sense of greatness even when everything else felt wrong. That is what creativity is to me. It’s why I keep moving forward, even if I am a newb at some things or I don’t ooze “brilliant artist” like everyone else I know. Interestingly enough, I’ve found support from almost everyone I’ve encountered in the art community. They really encourage “no competition” and I love that. I wish it was evident in other areas of my life.
Find Your Creative Niche
I encourage you, no matter what your life looks like or how stressful it is, to find something you enjoy creating. Creativity has tremendous benefits for your mood, stress levels, and sense of self-worth. You don’t have to be graphic designer, illustrator, or be into brush lettering. You could enjoy poetry or writing, home DIY projects, or landscaping. We all have the ability to create inside of us and when we find what it is that makes us alive, we do our soul a lot of good.
In an upcoming post, I want to share a little more about the creative process and how you can develop more of a creative habit. Take note of your urgency to create and notice how it benefits your life when you are doing it.
The truly creative mind in any field is no more than this: A human creature born abnormally, inhumanly sensitive. To him… a touch is a blow, a sound is a noise, a misfortune is a tragedy, a joy is an ecstasy, a friend is a lover, a lover is a god, and failure is death. Add to this cruelly delicate organism the overpowering necessity to create, create, create — so that
without the creating of music or poetry or books or buildings or something of meaning, his very breath is cut off from him. He must create, must pour out creation. By some strange, unknown, inward urgency he is not really alive unless he is creating.
Pearl S. Buck