“You own a dazzling feature of the human experience called CREATIVITY. Despite rumors to the contrary, everyone has it.” -Jill Badonsky, The Muse Is In
I can’t tell you how many times I have heard someone say something like “I don’t have a creative bone in my body,” or “I can’t even draw a straight line,” or “My paintings are ugly,” as though these statements provide undeniable proof that creativity is an innate talent and impossible to tap into…at least for that person. However, when we look at what esteemed creativity-coaching guru Jill Badonsky, founder and director of Kaizen-Muse Creativity Coaching, has to say about creativity, we see an entirely different perception—that all of us are inherently creative.
Judy Reeves, author of several books and founder of Writers' Ink, echoes Jill’ philosophy here:
“Creativity is a natural part of all human beings, like love and hope, and even though we may turn away or try to shut it down or deny it, it remains steadfastly with us.” -Judy Reeves, Wild Women, Wild Voices
If creativity is a natural part of us, why are we so hesitant to define ourselves as creative--or even--(gasp!)--to label ourselves as artists? Could it be that if we defined ourselves as creative or as artists, that the world would expect something of us that we could not possibly fulfill? Consider what Eric Maisel, international creativity coach, psychologist, and prolific author, has to say about this dilemma:
“… the word ‘artist’ carries with it so much baggage. For most people, it is much too hard a word to say. Built into it in a subtle, disturbing way is the implication that the speaker is special and good. It turns out to be simply too arrogant a thing to say. If you say, ‘I am an artist,’ you are just about saying, “I am a good artist,” or even, ‘I am a great artist.’ Your natural sense of modesty, along with your desire to say things clearly and carefully, prevent you from using a word that carries with it so many associations. You are no doubt happy to be called great, but you refuse to pin that label on yourself as a matter of linguistic course.” --Eric Maisel, Fearless Creating
So how do you feel about these ideas? How do you label yourself, and what does that actually mean to you? What would empower you to claim your creativity?