Creative work is never wasted. Even if the negatives are burned, the pages crumbled into dust, the paintings go unseen. The act of creativity itself is worth it because of the changes that take place inside the person doing the creating, and the ripple effect creating has on the world around her.
Sometimes it is challenging to continue writing when our work isn’t being published or produced, even if we are diligently submitting it. (And sometimes we aren’t actually being that diligent when we are whinging about not being acknowledged. Come on, you know it’s true.) We procrastinate, shy away from the computer or pen and paper or whatever our medium is for creating, telling ourselves we’ll do it later. Maybe when the inspiration hits us. We aren’t all that good anyway, what’s the point? Or suppose we were that good at one time, maybe we think we can never be that good again, so what’s the point? That must have been a fluke.
Here’s the point: creating changes us. Not just me. When you go to your easel, to your collage table, to your tablet and pencil, to your computer to make a poem, to write a story, to pick up that lump of clay and work on your sculpture, you will be changed. The act itself will change you from the person you were before to the person you are during and after. You will feel different. Especially when you are satisfied with something you produced, but the process itself is good for you. And because that is good for you, you are better in the world. And because you are better in the world, the world is better as well. It’s the butterfly effect, isn’t it?
Knowing that should be enough to bring us to our creative work, right? And still we procrastinate. Maybe that’s part of the process. If it is, then bless it, allow it, forgive it, do whatever it takes to continue on your creative path. Stop blaming yourself and start accepting yourself and all your foibles. Maybe you already do. Then never mind me. Go tell others. Mentor others who need to hear these words. Provide support to others. And not just to “creative types” because we are ALL creative types until we aren’t. Until the creativity is smashed out of us as children.
If you can find a way to encourage creativity in others, please do. It’s good for us all. And it comes in so many forms. Gardening, engineering, building, cooking, party-planning, so many ways I can’t think of right now.
Last night I had a dream. In it there was something medically wrong with my fingers and nails. But I resisted the treatment because it took too much time. Time I needed to use my hands for writing. I didn’t care that my nails split or my skin was dry, I had to use my time for writing, not for pampering my hands and nails. So I decided today I’d better get this blog post written that I’d been putting off. Someone may need to hear how important it is to be creative today.