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A lot of people really like the idea of exploring their creative side, although it’s far less often that they actually get around to doing it.With life these days being as busy and full of distractions as it is, it’s easy to get seriously sidetracked and never find the time for more contemplative activities. From work obligations, to family events, social invitations, and — of course — the ever-popular desire to curl up alone in front of the TV and binge-watch, our attention is highly divided.
All that being said, however, if you feel that you have any kind of creative impulse at all — even if you just like the idea of doing something creative — you should really make time to have a go at creating something, anything.
If you’re into writing, get started on the first draft of a novel. If you think it would be cool to paint a painting, then do it, and don’t stand in your own way with too much perfectionism. If you want to make something out of textile, get the ingredients together and see what happens.
Not convinced? Well, here are a few reasons why you should explore your creative side.
It helps to balance your unconscious thought processes and your emotions
For a pretty long time, psychologists and philosophers have argued that a large part of our minds are unconscious, or subconscious.These days, researchers continually find new evidence to support these ideas, with some arguing that only the tiniest fraction of what actually goes on in our heads, happens in our conscious awareness.This isn’t too hard a concept to grasp when you sit down and reflect on it for a while. After all, where do you think dreams come from? And daydreams? And all the strange images and sentences that just pop into your head apparently out of the blue on a regular basis?
One thing about arts, crafts, and creative endeavours is that they help us to balance our unconscious thought processes and emotions with our conscious mind, because any creative activity has to reach into the unconscious mind first, and then call on the conscious mind for proper expression.
The upshot of this is that we can often “work out” and move past emotional blocks and things that we didn’t even realise were troubling us, but that were nonetheless bothering, and maybe even obsessing, us on some level.
You get to apply your own insight and intuition to create a tangible product at the end — that’s really satisfying
These days, more and more of us work the kind of highly-abstract white collar jobs where we never really see the tangible results or benefits of our labours, in much of any sense outside of the fact that our paycheck arrives on time.
Not too long ago in history, the vast majority of people worked in industries and fields where there was a very tangible “end product” to take pride in at the end of a job. A farmer could look out over his field and see how much of the harvest he’d managed to bring in, in a certain number of hours. A steelworker might drive over the bridge he’d helped construct.The loss of this kind of tangible end-product has robbed quite a few of us of the kind of job satisfaction that gives life a lot of its joy.
By creating arts and crafts, you’re engaging in a hobby where that tangible end product is back in the picture again. At the start of the project, you maybe have nothing but a glue gun from Glue Guns Direct, a few basic materials, and some other improvised tools and equipment. In the end, maybe you’ve got an ornament that can sit proudly on your mantelpiece, or be gifted to a loved one, or sold on your Etsy store.That feels a lot like a meaningful achievement.
Creative work can be almost like a form of meditation — it’s a great stress-buster
Meditation is getting more and more popular these days, and regardless of which form of the practice you go in for, the core fundamental idea between them all is the same.You direct your focus on some object — whether that’s your breath, a mantra or sound you make, or anything else in your physical or inner environment. Maybe you even just watch your thoughts non-judgmentally.The key point, in any case, is that you direct your attention somewhere, in a focused manner, which helps you to disconnect from the constant cycle of rumination, worry, and over-analysis, that we are all so often prone to engage in.
Creative work achieves the same thing, to a large degree. When you’re working on some arts and crafts, your mind is calmed and focused on what you’re doing. You don’t get dragged this way and that to the same degree. Instead, you’ve got some physical thing in front of you that you’re busy working on, and your attention fixates on it and helps to get you out of your own head.
This, in turn, makes creative endeavours a great stress-buster, which is something we could all benefit from in our increasingly complex times.
Developing your creative skills can be a great entry-point to starting a side-hustle or a small business
It’s pretty common for people to not enjoy their day jobs one bit, and to want, desperately, to be able to direct their attention towards work that they find meaningful — and to make their living from doing such work.Developing your creative skills as a hobby can be an excellent entry-point for starting a side-hustle or a small business down the line.
If you develop a particular aptitude for a particular type of craft, and come up with something that other people find fun or useful, you’ll be in with a good shot of being able to sell it commercially.Of course, this process isn’t likely to bear fruit overnight. But it’s still something to aim towards, and the mere fact of having a target such as this can infuse life with a deeper sense of meaning.