What Does Creativity Mean to You?

by | Creativity, Encouragement, Writing | 10 comments

I’m returning to blogging after being away for a couple of years. Between managing my busy life and deadlines for a four-book series while working two other jobs, my creative bucket has been drained for other endeavors.  

But with my beautiful website makeover (thanks, Jason, at Website Ministries!), I plan to share weekly posts that encourage creatives like you.

Many times, I don’t feel like I’m very creative.

That may seem like an oxymoron for someone who is building a career as a novelist. But it’s true, especially the closer I get to meeting my book deadlines. I believe the reason for feeling that lack of creativity is because I’m more focused on the end product than where I am in the process.

I can spend hours in my head imagining people and places and combining them together to tell a story. And yes, that’s a part of the creative process. But there are times when I’m edging closer to the deadline that I struggle with getting the right words on the page.

The beauty of creation comes in many forms. In my free time, I love to do papercrafting, particularly stamping and cardmaking. While, at times, I can imagine a card layout in my head, often I need Pinterest boards and the vision of others to help me to see what I want. I’ll case (copy and share everything) designs I see online or in print using my own materials.

So what does it mean to be creative?

Basically, being creative means using your imagination and original thoughts or ideas for artistic or problem-solving purposes.

Being creative means using your imagination and original thoughts or ideas for artistic or problem-solving purposes. #writing #creativity #TellHisStory Click To Tweet

Creativity includes artistic pursuits such as writing, drawing, painting, graphic design, photography, home design, etc. However, creativity also applies to the thought process—seeing a problem and finding a way to solve it with a new idea or new perspective.

A Creative is able to think through the problem, then produce a solution, whether it’s plotting a story, taking a photograph, solving an intricate math problem, or finding a cure for Covid-19.

My husband’s creative pursuit is taking feathers, bits of fur, and other materials such as cork and foam, and putting them together to create hand-tied flies for fishing. And they are beautiful works of art.

Our oldest son is very creative in the kitchen. He says his skillet is his canvas as he creates new recipes and serves new dishes to try. Most of the time, his creations are successes, but sometimes, they don’t turn out as well as imagined. But that doesn’t stop him from creating new dishes.

Our youngest son is talented with a camera. He captures light in beautiful ways, streaming through trees, gliding over water, and exposing shadows. Every time he shows me a new picture, I tell him, “send it to me.”

Each one of us has distinct personalities, yet we have found the areas where we can explore our creative pursuits.

As a novelist, I spend a lot of time living in an imaginative world with characters who are not real, despite how real they feel to me. I can’t call any of them up for a cup of coffee or to take a walk.

To me, imagination is focusing on things we may think about or see in our heads. And creativity is taking what we see in our imaginations and producing something of tangible value. So, basically, we go from envisioning to doing…or creating.

I love this quote by playwright George Bernard Shaw, “Imagination is the beginning of creation. You imagine what you desire, you will what you imagine, and at least, you create what you will.”

So, if you’re in a slump and not feeling very creative, take a step back and define creativity for yourself. Are you more focused on the end product before you even begin? If so, perhaps you’re confusing being creative with being crafty. You can be creative without knowing how to make cards, knit a scarf, or throw a chunk of clay. As you hone your creative gift, your skills will grow and improve.

Maybe you’re waiting to be discovered. Maybe you’re building your brand. Maybe you’re needing encouragement to keep going. The best way to silence that inner can’t is to push through to prove you, indeed, can.

So I encourage you to embrace the creative gifts God has given you. Take time to learn your craft, and challenge yourself to step out of your comfort zone. Dare to be different, and be willing to risk failure. By doing these, you will build your confidence to continue growing your skills because you, my friend, are creative. You will learn through the process of crafting that the final product is where you will find your true creativity.

Your Turn: What does creativity mean to you? How do you like to express your own creativity?

What does creativity mean to you? How do you like to express your own creativity? #writing #creativity #TellHisStory Click To Tweet

I’m linking up with #TellHisStory

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10 Comments

  1. Edie Melson

    I was thrilled to see a post from you in my inbox this morning! I’ve missed your blog and I’m so glad you’re back! I love your thoughts on creativity, especially the quote. Blessings, E

    Reply
    • Lisa Jordan

      Thank you, Edie! It’s been a long road coming back to blogging–some of it kicking and screaming, but then God laid a vision on my heart. I look forward to encouraging creatives in their pursuit of using the gifts God has given them. <3

      Reply
  2. Susan Shipe

    I embrace my creative side. Great post. Welcome back.

    Reply
    • Lisa Jordan

      Thanks for visiting! What creative pursuits do you enjoy?

      Reply
  3. Susan Mason

    Hi Lisa
    I can relate to the way deadline kill creativity! That’s what just happened on my latest rewrites.
    Love starting fresh and creating new characters and a new story!
    Cheers,
    Susan

    Reply
    • Lisa Jordan

      Thanks for visiting, Susan. I agree–new characters and a new story can spark creativity…until the next deadline. 🙂

      Reply
  4. Jennifer Smith

    So glad you are back at the blog. I think it is one of my favorite creative outlets:) I look forward to visiting more!

    Reply
    • Lisa Jordan

      Thanks, Jennifer. I have to admit blogging doesn’t come easily to me, but I have a great support system, so that helps when I’m struggling. 🙂

      Reply
  5. Jeanne Takenaka

    Awww, Lisa. I loved this so much. And man, what you said about creativity being stifled by focusing on the end result is so true. I’ve found that, when I am too focused on the end result, the wonder in the process is lost, and the creativity is stifled by the urge to produce. There’s such a fine balance between the two. Beautiful post!

    Reply
    • Lisa Jordan

      You’re so right, Jeanne. I’ve had to force myself to stay present in the current scene, current blog post, or current workshop I’m writing in order to embrace the process. Thanks for visiting!

      Reply

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