A Different Kind of Creativity
I have three siblings, and we’re all about as different as four good people can be.
I’m the super artsy peacemaker who cries in Disney movies.
My sister is our red-headed spitfire who loves heavy metal and fears nothing.
My youngest brother is the only sibling with any athleticism whatsoever and he would live outside in a tent if he could.
Then there’s my oldest brother who is my polar opposite: He’s as numbers-oriented as I am artistic and as headstrong as I am sensitive. He wants to be an astrophysicist while I took an alternate class for my math credit in college because I flunked math 1010. He has to have company, I need my alone time. I have to create to survive and he wouldn’t touch a paintbrush with a 20 foot pole. He couldn’t care less about approval from others and I’m the recovering Queen of People Pleasers.
I firmly believe that everyone has a creative spark, some art form inside them that just has to get out, that creativity is integral to the well-being of every human in some way, but this brother of mine, whom I supposedly share DNA with, has never shown the least bit of interest in any form of creative activity.
How is this possible? Doesn’t everyone want to be creative in some way? Did I hog all the creative genes and leave my poor little brother with nothing but the number-loving genes I probably rejected? Is my deeply-rooted believe in everyone’s creative potential flawed?!
Nobody knows us all better than Mom.
I brought this up to her, how weird it is to me that someone could have zero interest in creative pursuits of any kind and she said “But he is creative. His math and science is creative for him.”
In my mind, math and creativity couldn’t be farther apart. “But how? In math, there’s no room for flexibility. You just have to follow the rules to get one answer.”
“The application is creative though, the way he tries to figure out the universe and things with numbers. He can use numbers in creative ways.”
Something clicked in my brain and suddenly I got it. That’s how scientists and mathematicians with nary a drop of artistic interest get their creative fix! They come up with ideas and test them with numbers.
Isn’t any creative venture like that? You come up with an idea and you play with it. You see what works, what doesn’t, and you adjust. Eventually, you come to a resolution of some sort, a satisfied ideas or question, or a physical object, a performance, a story. It totally makes sense!
I still stand by my belief that everyone needs creativity in some form, but I’m expanding my idea of what creativity actually is and how it works. It truly is a trait within each of us if we’re willing to find it and see how it plays out in our lives.
There’s not wrong way to be creative.
Your way is the right way!