CREATIVITY AND WELLBEING
It is November, late on a Monday evening... ages ago Eye On Leicester messaged me asking to write a piece about creativity and wellbeing. "Sure!" I said merrily without a second thought and all the enthusiasm in the world!
Now I’m sat here in front of my laptop screen and I am stumped.
I have no idea what to write. But I feel that I need to make a voice heard about not only the simple joy that comes with creativity, but also the amazing effects it has on our very beings, our communities, our communications, our societies…from the very first painting we remember doing, to the current Netflix show that is blowing our minds… to the Instagram story of choreographed dancing to the song you sing to realign yourself with the universe.
When we are creative, we are primal, in love, fearful, overwhelmed, riddled with boredom, heartbroken, in pain, misunderstood, misunderstanding, drunk, sober, out of luck, or very simply filled with desire to create. But where do you begin with diving into the deep connection that creativity builds with these inner parts of yourself that otherwise stay sound asleep in the humdrum of life, and unravelling the precise effects it has on our own wellbeing?
We write words down and hide them in a drawer never to be read again, we play out of tune instruments to the chagrin of our neighbours, we doodle quickly on a back of an envelope while in a zoom meeting before disregarding it in a blink of an eye and sending it to the formidable shredder in the corner of our rooms. There’s something so transient about all of these things. A lot of it doesn’t last.
The remarkable thing is that when we are in that present moment and giving all our psychic neuroses and energy into whatever we’re creating there’s a shift inside you, and if you’re anything like me, once you put the pen down, for whatever reason, you can breathe a little easier. The fact that these lovely little creations might get discarded and forgotten about in less time than we are happy to admit, and might not ever be seen again unless by some divine intervention becomes a mere side note here - the footprints that those creations have on our being echoes throughout us for longer.
It’s like having a conversation with a friend you really trust and is unconditional, but a few days later you forget what the hell you were talking about, but you still feel better. And you want to keep seeing that friend and exploring the deeper parts of yourself that they allow you to explore with a complete sincerity and levity.
Creativity is the thing that anchors us to ourselves and to each other. Maybe I’m going about this all wrong. Maybe all I need to do is forget about the effects and forget about thinking, and just pick a pen up and let the words drift out of my brain....