I don’t generally put too much stock into articles on the Huffington Post, but I really like this one — “18 Things Highly Creative People Do Differently.” My wife sent it to me, essentially stating that this article could have been “18 Characteristics of Kaitlyn,” and she was right. My wife, in case you don’t know, is a crafting master. She learns a new a craft every other hour…well, maybe every three hours. Regardless, she’s creative, crafty, and amazingly talented, and so it was upon my knowledge of her that I consider this article to be valid.
You can (and should) read the article for yourself, but here are a few of the habits that I’d like to point out. Consider it a “crash course” in creativity, if you will.
Daydreaming & Solitude — Refueling Your Spirit
Daydreaming isn’t just wishful thinking and escapism. It’s preparing your mind for tomorrow, mapping out what might, could, and even should happen. When my wife does, I call it “envisioning to win.” It’s not about winning in a competitive sense but more about succeeding, or, if you prefer, winning the war against boredom!
Daydreaming is where creativity is born, and it is in solitude that it is conceived. Many creative people are what we would label “introverts,” and yet our world is incredibly extroverted. Taking time for solitude is as much about resting the introverts nerves as it is about refueling their spirit. Beyond this, as Christians, we must admit that it is most often in solitude and silence that God speaks to us most clearly. There is far too much noise in our world. Stepping back from the din, we can be strengthen and encouraged to continue creating as we take time to commune with the Creator.
People-Watching & Keen Observations — Refueling Your Creativity
Many creative people would admit to being people-watchers; it’s a great way to fuel the creative process, especially, combined with a keen eye for observing everything. “Art imitates life,” is the old quote, right? How can you art do that unless you’ve been watching life? Creative individuals can sometimes be like an engine; their observations act as the fuel. This is a generalization and a severe over-simplification, but I’ve definitely felt this way myself a time or two.
Of course, this ability to observe, to see it all, can have a serious drawback if it pushes us toward perfectionism. Just as for some the eye can never be satisfied with respect to greed, gluttony, or lost, so it is with creatives who let their attention to detail distract them for the overall purpose of creating: communicating from your very heart. When we keep that in mind, we’re more likely to remember that we aren’t perfect and because of this our art never will be either.
I enjoyed this article, and I’m sure you will, too. However, I had one problem with it: setting a number, a quantity for the habits of creative people doesn’t do justice to the diversity of creativity nor the diversity of people in this world. Maybe these are the “eighteen most common.” That’s fine if that’s the argument. What I don’t want is for anyone to doubt their creative drive or ability because they only partake in a few or even none of these. This is not an exhaustive list, but it is still a good one, especially, if you want helping identifying and refining your creative patterns.
Remember, in the end, everyone is different; everyone is unique. However, creative people sometimes take that sense of “different” to whole new level, which is fine. Their differentness is what separates them, what equips them to write and think and create on a different level. So, if you’re creative and you’ve felt a bit “too different” lately, I hope you go check out this article and are comforted.