Creativity and life force – part 1

Isaiahs_wings
It appears that our lives, both the length and the
quality of life, are the result of self-determined creation. My observation is that people are as alive as they consider they
can be creative.

How alive do you feel?

Have you ever noticed that time passes in a blur when you are creating madly away? No?

Well then, have you ever noticed how time s l o w s  d o w n when you are kept from creating or have lost interest?

Perhaps you are one of the fortunate few who has never had to think about creating. If you are in constant create mode with your creativity switch full on, you already know what the punch line is and can skip to another topic.

Creativity can be encouraged, but the drive must come from within for it to affect life in a positive way.

Postman_2
I know from experience that dire necessity is a great spur to creativity, as it clears away all of the clutter and fiddling around (TV watching, email reading) that can fill up time when I lose focus. Necessity is nature’s way of getting us to be self-determined again.

On the other hand, when we are in a situation where our creativity is regulated, constrained, and enforced our quality of life can be dismal, even when we are making loads of money.

Creativity_504x428_3
  Those of you who are highly paid employees of certain large corporations or are working on things that are damaging to health or the environment probably have some idea of what this is like. Self-directed creativity is discouraged and you can feel stifled.

At the other extreme are those in managed care facilities who have lost the desire to create. They sit quietly in wheel chairs waiting for something to happen. Other patients at these facilities are still creating and they are noticeable more alive.

So what determines whether self-determined creativity occurs?
I think the clue lies in the fact that creativity is outflow.
Continuous or enforced inflow decreases creativity.

I will be exploring this further and welcome your comments and suggestions.

Image credits:
Creativity corp http://weblog.sinteur.com/2008/05/04/
TV watchers http://www.journeywithjesus.net/BookNotes/postman_big.jpg

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0 Responses to Creativity and life force – part 1

  1. Mouse says:

    I believe that someone described this as Flow, though I can’t recall who

  2. mattbg says:

    Although I still work for a corporation, I left my previous job because I just had no idea what I was meant to be doing any more, and neither did my management. It came to the point where they were always trying to invent reasons for their existence by getting in the way and making it difficult for other people to get their work done, and this had been going on for a number of years, so there were others higher up that obviously were asleep, too.

    It had got to the point where I was apologizing to others for my existence and trying to find ways to quietly get out ot the way eliminate my role from the lives of the people I was ostensibly helping. It wasn’t a process, regulatory or safety role that might be tedious but is still necessary. It was a role set up under the guise of a useful function but which had none of the elements required to make that function useful or successful.

    People who retired from that department were often forced out after a year or so of being idled and fed a trickle of demeaning tasks. I wonder if this causes brain damage. When they left, they had no idea what to do with themselves. The part-time hobbies of golfing and vacationing and buying and just stockpiling consumer goods that worked fine on the weekend and 3 weeks of paid vacation didn’t translate well into a full-time life of retirement. They are not creating. When you see them some years on, they look significantly older.

    I always had a problem with the “I work to live, not live to work” idea. It makes work sound like something quite disconnected from life. I still don’t quite know what I think about work’s relation to life, but I’m 31 so have some time to figure it out.

    There was an interesting book I browsed on this subject, called “The Creative Habit”. It was oriented toward performance artists, but had lots of ideas that are useful generically. “Mastery” by George Leonard is another one I liked… particularly in its discussion of the development of mastery of a skill and the long plateaus of seeming non-progress that are necessary and deceiving yet can sometimes be essential.

  3. Mouse says:

    I remember when the TV ended at 11am with a nice Goodnight, sleep well” before that dwindling dot of light disappeared, when there were only 4 channels instead of an infinite number, when dead bodies weren’t shown, ever, when the bad news didn’t get broadcast until the kids were safely teddy-tucked in bed, when you couldn’t accidentally (or deliberately) tuen into porn on your set, when The BBC ruled the airwaves
    I think I must be getting old!
    I digress, loved the TV pic
    ditto the cubicle-cage!

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