I recently recorded a LIVE Facebook video on the difference between Creativity and Artistry. (To see the full video, head here.) Today I wanted to dive a little deeper into what I mean when I say that Creativity is naturally a Positive State of Mind.
As a quick review, here is the basic difference between Creativity and Artistry as outlined in my video:
CREATIVITY IS A MODE OF THINKING. ARTISTRY IS A MODE OF EXPRESSION.
So a painter's mode of expression is his finished painting. But artists aren't the only ones who are creative. When a business person is creative, their mode of expression (Art) is finding new solutions to difficult business problems. An inventor's expression is his invention. Etc. Etc.
Here are a few other ways to think about Creativity:
1. Realizing something wonderful doesn't exist yet, but you can make it happen.
2. Solving a problem through unconventional methods or ways of thinking.
3. Taking two things that seem totally dissimilar and finding a meaningful connection.
In one of my favorite books Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain, author Betty Edwards explains creativity as processing old information in new ways. "A creative individual intuitively sees possibilities for transforming ordinary data into a new creation, transcendent over the mere raw materials." (Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain, p.39)
Recently I did some informal research by asking members of my Creativity Club to tell me their definitions of Creativity. Here are some of their responses.
"[Creativity is] the art of translating your thoughts into mediums that can be experienced by others." -Dawn
"Uniquely original ideas that grab the attention of others." -Maegan
"Getting what's inside out in a way that refreshes your heart and mind." -Penny
"Letting your mind wander past the "fence" of foregone conclusions and letting it play in the field of possibilities." -Me ; )
Based on all these individual perspectives, can you see why I say Creativity is a Positive State of Mind? Of course you can! What's better that bringing beauty into existence or expressing yourself and being appreciated for that expression? And remember, none of these quotes has to be read as being specifically about "Art." They are about the creative ways of thinking that lead to various forms of expression. Creativity applies to any and every aspect of life!
Since we are all on the same page now, let me flip the script. What's the opposite of Creativity? That's Right... "Destructivity"... a Negative State of Mind.
So if you want to be Creative, your first step is to guard against negativity. Don't focus on your worries and circumstances. We all have those. Instead focus on what you can do, with all your unique thoughts, talents, and abilities, to CHANGE your circumstances.
TO CREATE NEW CIRCUMSTANCES!
The more you focus on what you can control (and where you can create change) the more effective you will be in achieving your daily, weekly, and yearly goals. In the book The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, Stephen Covey describes each person's immediate environment as made up of a large "Circle of Concern." Inside that circle is a smaller circle he calls the "Circle of Influence." If you focus on the things you can influence, rather than those things that are out of your control, your circle of Influence will actually grow over time. You will be able to influence more of your life as you take baby steps toward your goals. You build your Ideal Existence one brick at a time. You bite off and chew one piece at a time until eventually the elephant is gone..... I could go on and on, but you catch my drift.
So what is the one thing I want you to learn from all this? If you want to grow your creativity and influence the path of your life through Intentional Living, it is imperative that you focus on the Positive change you can create each day. Ask yourself, What is one step I can take today to start creating my ideal existence?" Answer that question, Set that Intention, and Start Creating!