Left brain: logical, analytical, systematic. Right brain: creative, artistic, intuitive. We all tend to function more in one than the other, though we can tap into both hemispheres and their innate strengths!
Depending on your personality, your God-given wiring, roles in life, and the occupations you may fulfill, you may camp out on one side more often than the other. Sometimes we have to be technical and linear, and that’s perfectly necessary. Other times we have to access the out-of-the-boxness of our brains and venture more into the creative epicenter of the right.
So I have been pondering the effects of tapping into the creative. This blog is a part of that for me. I get to wordsmith fun phrases, manipulate themes, colors, and pictures, and design in my head. It’s a free association of sorts; a catharsis. Other times I want to get more hands-on creativity bubbling! I am no artist, by any stretch of the imagination, but I still like the feel of painting, drawing, or doodling to express my thoughts beyond words. Or at times I like to decorate and design a space, wall, or corner of a room. Randomly mixing and matching colors, prints, home/office accessories. It’s all about using the creative juices to form something unique, beautiful, and fun!!
Some people do this through cooking masterpieces on a plate. Some do this by writing and recording music. Others do this by creatively assembling outfits. Others photograph. Some write. Some dance. Some sing and play. Others craft and collage. Some bake. Some sew and knit. Some decorate. Others sculpt. I could go on forever!
What’s your creative endeavor as of late? Do you have a way to tap into the less systematic side of your brain? When is the last time you did something creatively fueled and threw off the structured grid of the left brain?
There is fun and freedom in the occasional creative effort, when you can bypass the who-what-why-where-when-and how’s and simply DO and CREATE. In therapy I enjoy the moments when I ask a client to draw something on the spur of the moment, without time to think, process, and plan. It’s not about perfection and strategy…it’s about getting to the “stuff” behind all that. Don’t think, just draw. Don’t think, just dance. Don’t think, just write. Don’t think, just paint.
Creative and simple suggestions for the week~
- Start with the simple–pick up a pad of paper and a pen. Then draw, write, doodle, or sketch. Don’t think too much about it, just start. Sometimes it helps to pick a word or object and use it as your muse. Maybe pick the mood of your day or moment–happy, sad, excited, frustrated, hopeful, discouraged, afraid, etc., and draw or write about whatever comes to mind. This is not an art class or english seminar assignment. It’s for you. So don’t be critical, don’t overanalyze. Just give it a whirl!
- Get creative at home or at the office–this does not imply a renovation project or all new decor. I am talking about simply moving around a piece of furniture, or taking a naked wall and making it more of a focal piece. Picture what you might like in the blank space and put your creative touch to it! My style at home is warm, but eclectic. I like the olive greens, country yellows, navy blues, and rich reds. But within that scope, I like to add some variety and accent colors. So every so often, I add some new, random piece to a wall or a new item to a shelf. Some of my favorite “randoms” include a thrift shop sailing print that I picked up in California. It looks retro and doesn’t quite match my general scheme, but I love it! Another is an antique set of opera glasses passed down to me by my grandmother in Tulsa. They are GORGEOUS. I am not a big antique collector on my own, so these are extra special to me and add a touch of class and family history to my mantle. I am also into my fairly new set of R.C. Gorman tiles–a Navajo Indian artist. These beauties were a church yard sale find this summer! All were added to our home to bring variety and a creative touch. See what you can do! Move a painting, switch a chair, or add a simple accent.
- Get on Pinterest! If you don’t have the time to head to the nearest craft supply store, or time to bake an apple pie today (I sure don’t!), just log onto Pinterest and admire the many creative efforts and ideas of zillions of other people worldwide!! Open up your mind to the possibilities of ALLLL the many things you could create and challenge yourself to dream. Recipes, crafts, DIY projects galore, and on and on! Create a board on a random idea, style, or motif! The options are endless and it just takes the simple effort to browse and select with the click of a mouse. While this is not the most hands-on suggestion, it is easily accessible and fun! “Happy Pinning!” as Pinterest so often says.
- PLAY! As I sat in staff meeting today at the church, I thoroughly enjoyed the discussion that arose after Nathan read a quote for consideration: “The true object of all human life is play.” ~G.K. Chesterton. We then spent an hour talking about how play is creative, flexible, open, free, and unbound. It is the opposite of the structured, predictable, and organized functions of our typical days. We sat and pondered how play is a part of our lives currently, how it could be incorporated more, and how we might play more in our personal, work, and ministerial lives. Play is not reserved for 10 and under. It should be a lifelong essential. I admit that I am not the most spontaneous person. I like to plan and proceed with ordered steps. But after so long, the orderliness can become drudgery. So I have to flip the switch and engage the right brain! I have to tap into creativity, fun, and flexibility. So I offer you the challenge as well: PLAY! Your play will be your own, and different from any other’s. Your play could be attending a Red Rocks concert, or throwing a themed dinner party, or going on a hike, or roasting marshmallows, or staking out a big leather chair at Starbucks with a new book in hand. You choose, you enjoy!
I would love to hear from you. What allows you to break out of the set and structured, and into the realm of creativity and play?!
Many FUN blessings my friends. May your creative juices flow in abundance!