I share a lot here about my struggles, but today I want to celebrate my progress I’m making in an area that is important to me.
I have never seen myself as a creative person and have spent years aching to create but firmly believing I couldn’t unless I was following someone else’s instructions.
I never cooked without a recipe. In fact, I always thought I was being quite brave when I would make some slight substitution or maybe add a little extra or a little less of something.
I could follow patterns when doing crafts, but I never had the creativity to create something that I didn’t have clear instructions for. At most, I might use a slightly different color (only with much angst) or add some small embellishment to something. But without a pattern, I was completely blocked.
The only place I could create at all was writing in my journal, but the moment I thought about anything I wrote being seen by anyone else, I froze and could produce nothing. I would occasionally make some small progress at writing a novel, but that would also quickly grind to a halt as the fear of anyone else seeing my words kicked in.
As I’ve learned to begin trusting my intuition and ceasing to hide so I can bring my full authentic self into the world, one of the first things I’m noticing is that my creativity is no longer blocked. Fear is not stopping me anymore.
I have begun writing this blog, knowing that people may read it. Even knowing that it is being read, the words still come. I am able to write day after day, without straining and agonizing over the words. They pour forth with ease.
I have a friend for whom I have the pleasure of being able to cook on occasion, and I have begun preparing these meals without recipes—or at most, with a recipe offering only the vaguest sense of guidance to what I wind up creating. Some of these have turned out better than others, but they have all been quite edible. The most amazing this about this is that I’m not just experimenting privately for my own meals; I’m taking these risks knowing that someone else will be eating whatever it is I create!
I have been working lately on some crochet projects. The first two items I made were created with patterns, but each of them contained departures from the patterns in various ways. My latest creation was somewhat informed by a pattern for a completely different thing, but the colors, the yarn types, and the size and shape of the thing I am creating are completely different from the pattern. And much to my delight, this latest version is the one that most closely resembles the vision I have had for these projects all along. The look of the final product is closer to what I’ve been aiming for, and the time required to make it is an order of magnitude less than my previous attempts!
I realize that for many people these are all things that they would take for granted. For me, this is absolutely revolutionary.
I am re-discovering my creativity for the first time since I was a small child and would routinely make up long stories that I would spontaneously put to song even as I was imagining them. I thought that part of me was gone forever.
I am learning to risk bringing my own creations into the world in service of my vision. As a recovering perfectionist, the risk of doing something that might wind up being “wrong” is huge! Yet I am not letting the possibility of being less than perfect stop me anymore.
I am finding ways to bring my authentic voice into the world (through words as well as tangible creations) without hiding. I am finding the courage to bring my unique gifts into the world not knowing how those gifts might be received by others. I am creating for the pure joy of creating.
I am owning my own creativity again, and I love it! Today I am celebrating my courage and my new-found freedom to be creative! What joy to watch those blocks melt away!