Creativity & Freedom – The best combination!
by Nicola Stanton | Creative programme Development Manager
There is a freedom that comes with travel – when we find ourselves in a new place, often with new people, we feel a sense of freedom from the fact that, right here and now, we can be who we want to be without anyone having previous expectations of who we are and what we are capable of.
In this new place we have the opportunity to discover who we want to be outside of the labels that others have placed on us. We can take off our masks. Even for those of us who struggle with change, when we are around people who understand this anxiety, we are given a safe space in which to explore at our own pace.
Within this sense of freedom, there is a bravery that allows us to embrace new situations, new ideas and the inner world of our imagination. Couple this freedom and bravery with any form of creativity and you have an excellent recipe for self-growth.
Creativity is a form of expression which gives us a new language in which to communicate our inner ideas to others. Whether it be through creative writing, painting, song, music, sculpture, or the dramatic arts, we can express a part of ourselves that allows the rest of us to remain private, or alternatively we can creatively reflect an idea in an abstract way for others to interpret through the reflective lens of their own experience.
Creativity is a means of connection with yourself, others, and the world at large. Whether you are working one to one or in a small group, creativity allows you to connect with those aspects of yourself that can transform, resolve and heal. Through expressing previous experiences through an art form, we can learn from them, understand more and move forward. Through creative ideas we can build new thought processes and become open to different views, experiences and most importantly, – new possibilities for the future.
Creativity can give us a safe space to explore alternatives, it can allow us to delve into the world of play and make-believe from the safety of reality. It can also expand our world view, pushing the boundaries of what we previously thought was possible for us.
By creating a tangible piece, we see that we are capable of creating something from what appears to be nothing, or from a myriad of different elements pulled together through thought alone. We may choose to follow someone else’s recipe or guidelines, but this doesn’t matter – the act of bringing something new into existence is important in and of itself.
We learn new skills, use parts of our body and mind that have been dormant in the everyday practical routine of life and through this we begin to see that we can think differently, behave differently and reach new previously unexplored aspects of ourselves.
Through the creative process we find inspiration in small common-place things that suddenly become little miracles when we really see them for what they are. This focus is an act of mindfulness, a form of meditation on the present time and place, an act that can ground us and elevate us simultaneously, one which can bring us into the here and now and allow us to appreciate each moment for what it is.
As we explore our own creativity, we begin to use our problem-solving brain to innovate and invent. We begin to navigate uncharted psychological waters and our thoughts are able to flow without self-judgement and criticism in a more observational objective way. We become our own story tellers, choosing our own narrative and increasing our self-agency. With self-agency comes self-confidence.
Creativity is an act of self-care, of being present with and for yourself. It is giving yourself the gift of your own attention and through this is a fantastic way to appreciate who you are and your place in the world.
You do not have to be a world class artist of any kind in order to acknowledge and enjoy your own creative gifts, every artist at some point was a complete novice with no experience, and whilst some people are naturally more inclined towards creative endeavours, most people take years to hone their craft. The important thing to remember is to enjoy all aspects of the process and allow it to take you somewhere authentic, inspirational and full of possibilities.