Creativity is something I think most of us are born with, but as we grow older, the expectations of others becomes a huge weight we carry with us, crushing and reshaping our imagination and desires like metamorphic rock.
Some of our deepest hopes and desires get buried so deep and pressured under so many layers they become fossilised.
But like fossils, our creativity can be excavated and brought back into the light. We can cast off the weight and begin chiseling our dreams back into a recognisable shape.
Those of us who never re-discover or are too fearful to dig up our dreams risk staying fragmented, never really connecting with who we are. Forgetting our true form.
We risk living someone else’s dream, someone else’s life, someone else’s purpose.
A swift death.
When I left school with the intention of becoming a writer (because I’d always loved writing) I was told it was unrealistic. “Get a good job”, they said, and “Keep your nose to the grindstone”. I was told that only a select few lucky and talented people actually make a living from writing and that I was ‘living in cloud cuckoo land’.
Ironically, once I stopped chasing my dream of becoming an author or blogger, that was when I was truly living in Cloud Cuckoo Land, because I carried on writing but kept my words a secret, and I never stopped writing sentences or concocting stories in my head.
Let me tell you what years of a dying dream feels like.
It’s watching the world go by but never really feeling part of it.
It’s watching other people and wishing you were anyone else and anywhere else.
It’s the constant nagging feeling deep in your bones that something’s not quite right, that you’re forgetting something, or that you need to be doing something else.
It’s walking a crowded path where you can’t see the way forward, nor the way out.
It’s the void you try to fill with the latest and greatest thing, with substances or with more money, yet you’re never satisfied.
It’s the death of the self
Now let me tell you what it feels like to start living your truth. To rediscover who you were before those layers crushed you.
It’s feeling light and full of purpose.
It’s being fully present and in touch with yourself.
It’s like unearthing a long-buried treasure and not understanding why others can’t seem to see its value, but equally not caring.
It’s walking the less-trodden path which is lonelier but so much easier to find and connect with others on a similar journey, and so much more satisfying. Your path, your pace.
It’s a feeling of satisfaction and fulfillment which nothing else can match.
It’s returning to who you are.
It’s giving the world a gift – the gift of your creativity. The gift of yourself.