Happy Friday, friends. :)
Greetings from South Africa, where I’ve been catching a lot of sunbeams. They remind me to illuminate even when it’s a real challenge to do so.
Creativity is a really funny thing. Sometimes it feels completely suppressed, and other times it wakes me up in the middle of the night and won’t let me go back to sleep until I do something about it. That’s what happened this morning – I had set my alarm for 8am, but this newsletter started writing itself in my head around 6. So here I am writing. When I ask so sincerely for creativity to come to me, I can’t tell it to go away so I can sleep more. I think Elizabeth Gilbert would agree.
The reason creativity woke me up like this is because I found this list off 33 Ways To Stay Creative right before I went to bed last night. I can’t take credit for writing the list and I actually can’t figure out who did, but it’s EPIC!
This topic has been coming up a lot for me and some of my friends. When conditions are “perfect” for creativity (like at a retreat in Bali), and you’re feeling deeply inspired and in the creative flow, it feels so easy to say you’re gonna just “keep it up” no matter where you are or what’s going on. But the truth is, creativity takes a lot of nurturing.
That’s why I love this list so much – it reminds me that we have to set up the conditions for our creativity to flow.
Why is creativity important to me? Well here’s a little snippet.
Here’s the list: 33 Ways To Stay Creative
When I saw this, it immediately reminded me of Warning by Incubus. I’ve loved Incubus for a long time, if you listen to some of their lyrics there are a ton of hidden life lessons in there (just trust me on this), and the lyrics to this song in particular have always held some weight for me. I’m listening to it now as I write this. There are too many quotes in it that simultaneously terrify me and also make me want to get up immediately and start living a life that feels more meaningful or impactful.
“She woke in the morning…she knew that her life had passed her by. And she called out a warning…don’t ever let life pass you by.”
“I suggest we learn to love ourselves before its made illegal. When will we learn? When will we change? Just in time to see it all come down…those left standing will make millions writing books on the way it should have been.”
COME ON NOW! Those quotes have always given me fire. If that’s not enough to kick you into high gear on some level..well, I don’t know what is.
I also LIVE for the quote, “What’s so wrong with being happy?” Do you ever feel guilty for being happy or working on your own happiness when there’s so much negativity and suffering in the world? I know I do. It’s such a weird type of guilt…guilt for being happy. But really, I’m over it. Because our own unhappiness or suffering due to the weight of the world isn’t helping anything or serving anyone. Prioritizing feeling good gives you the ability to elevate others and bring more beauty to the world. You HAVE to trust that there’s a ripple effect there from spreading beauty and happiness and that it MEANS SOMETHING, to SOMEONE.
So I’d suggest we all start taking our own happiness and well-being more seriously, and unapologetically for that matter. Nothing irks me more than when I post or write something positive about life and someone says “must be nice.” Yes, it is, and I CREATED it, on purpose, and I work very diligently on my happiness and freedom and creativity and appreciation of beautiful moments and being able to look at the world through the eyes of wonder – because it MATTERS to me. What you put your energy towards will grow. Whether that be suffering or joy or freedom or captivity. Which version of yourself are you feeding?!?!
Ok – back to the “otherworldly” thing as it relates to creativity.
I’ve always loved that exact line, “be otherworldly.” IN FACT, it was my MySpace “headline” back in 2006. Remember how MySpace pages had a little headline? I love thinking about MySpace. I also had snowflakes falling down my page, which I coded myself. I have a lot of love for MySpace because it taught me how to do some basic coding, which helps me greatly to this day.
Definition: otherworldly: of, relating to, or being part of a reality beyond the observable physical universe.
When I say this, what I mean is, being CURIOUS about reality and the universe and humanity, REMEMBERING that there’s so much out there beyond my physical sight and the physical world I live in. I love talking about this with my friends, I could stay up all night staring at the stars and questioning reality and and energy and the connection we all have to each other. (I love you guys).
When I start thinking about how huge the universe (or multiverse…?) is, how crazy stars and planets are, how vast this PLANET is, how LITTLE WE KNOW in terms of what’s going on around here (are we in a dream? the matrix…? WHERE ARE WE, and who is feeding me these creative ideas anyway?!) it makes me feel wildly curious, and wildly creative, and makes me realize how my day-to-day “worries” are really nothing in the grand scheme of it all.
Above all, thinking about otherworldly things obliterates my fear of creating, in a way. It makes me giggle at my fear. It makes my fear feel really small and really silly.
Makes me think of this Andy Warhol quote, actually:
It’s essential for me to keep my head in the clouds a little bit in order to keep my wonder alive. Otherwise I get too bogged down in physical reality and things feel…trudgy. You know what I mean? Eyes to the sky!!! Thankfully I have my boyfriend and also root vegetables to bring me down to earth when I’m venturing too much into space cadet territory. But I need a solid amount of starry-eyed wonder in my life in order to fuel my creative spirit.
How about you?
What’s your favorite on this list of 33 things? What makes you feel creative?
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