When I was a little girl, my favorite toy — well, second only to the possibility-laden cardboard box — was the family vacuum cleaner. My open, childlike mind imagined that the extendable maroon vacuum hose was my very own sound system. With my younger sister singing back-up, I would belt Twinkle-Twinkle, Little Star – loudly – into my made-up microphone. This is the stuff that legends are made of, people.
Ok, maybe not. But it made for some priceless home videos. Fortunately, however, that love for singing has never wavered. While there is certainly no professional career in the stars for me, I love to sing. Loudly. Mostly made up songs.
I sing about romance and grocery lists. I think up ridiculous rhymes and imagine choruses that capture my unending love for my dog. I have one tune that I sing to the pets extolling my adoration for them. Most days, I’m completely off-base lyrically, and many of my songs end in jumbled noises as I run out of rhyming words. But the beat goes on. In the car. In the living room, twirling in my deliciously slick socks. Our old neighbors referred to us as the “singing neighbors,” and I’m almost positive that our current neighbors have heard our little ditties. (Dear neighbors, I hope you enjoy the music of our lives… and I apologize for the cacophony of our pets’ playtime. Sincerely, Me)
It’s goofy, foolish, seriously joy-filled, unflinchingly and unapologetically weird. And it’s one of many ways that I creatively engage with the world.
We’ve been taught by the world that the creatives among us are artists. Painters. Sculptors. Poets. And for those of us in less artistically-inclined professions, well, tough shit. Creativity is for the starving artist, the inventor, the professional innovator.
Uh-uh, no way. Not true. Yes, they are deeply creative. And, so are you.
Creativity re-imagined is the way that we express ourselves to the world. This could be in a painting or a poem. It could be in a love-drenched kiss or a well-cooked meal. It could be in messy finger paints or the way that you engaged compassionately with the barista this morning.
For the accountant, creativity could be the care that she puts into inputting the numbers just right. It could be the way she hugs her partner when she arrives home. For the publicity and promotions coordinator, it could be the way he captures the evening light in the photos he takes on the walk home. It could be her volunteer work on the weekends. For the artist, her truest moments of creativity could come in the way that she raises her son. Creativity re-imagined. It’s the mark we place on the world by living out our deepest values.
Creativity is essential. It’s the way we feed our souls. So scrapbook or sing. Write or meet your girlfriends for coffee. Plan the perfect date or say a heartfelt “thank you” to the bus driver on your way to work. Dance alone in your living room or plan a dinner party with friends. Paint or sculpt your life by what you love.
This is the stuff that legends are made of, people.