Our world is full of people staring down at their phone, iPad, laptop, etc. Where did the eye contact go? When’s the last time you looked someone in the eyes for longer than a second? Why are we so uncomfortable with connection? When I changed my major (or added a major, technically), I realized how creativity allowed for a community to be built that I was unfamiliar with in my science major community. It goes beyond school, though. Even in yoga, we’re timid and shy around each other, despite the fact that we all have one huge thing in common. Creativity, on my mat, with pen and paper, in the classroom, in my favorite juice shop (AKA right as I type this sentence) can create a community, bond like-minded people, and make magic happen.
Why + How I Create
I write. I’m a creative writing (and psychology) major, so my classes give me an added outlet of self-expression.
I practice and teach yoga. Creating classes gets my brain flowing, thinking, twirling about on the imaginary mat in my mind. On the mat, I create shapes, strengthen my body as it’s my instrument, and paint silent poetry with my breath. Not to mention, when I teach, I watch 30+ bodies moving, dancing, singing to one another, sometimes without even realizing it, and it’s beautiful to be able to lead such a magnificent ancient art.
I create, necklaces and poetry and yoga classes and blog posts and essential oil mixtures, and I love it. When I was younger, though, I told myself I could never be an art major. In middle school art classes, I could barely sketch my own face. Now, I probably still couldn’t. What I can do, though, is describe how the moonlight sketches on my face as I fall asleep with my journal cascading over my chest, the ink from my pen racing around the blank white page. I can give you all the details on the freckles on my nose, the birthmark on the right side of my forehead, the acne on my right cheekbone. I’ll paint a picture with my words, and that’s my best, most pure form of self-expression. Give me a paintbrush that doesn’t have black or blue ink on the end? No, thanks, I’ll pass. But if that’s your form of self-expression, then you go, I wish I could make colors look like that magical on a canvas! Which brings me to my next point.
Give Art a Chance
Sculpt, paint, dance, draw, write, sketch, doodle, twirl, knit, sing, act, read, think. Just thinking is creating! Manifest your own dreams to make them a reality. Create your own fate. Work hard at whatever it is that you love, let it take you away from the world for a little bit every day. Create something you love. Something you stand for and beside, always. Create with your friends, teachers, professors, parents, grandparents, the farmer at the market, the student next to you at the library. Avoid putting up boundaries, and if you have some, knock them down. I refused to give myself a chance in the art world because I wasn’t good at one thing, and if I hadn’t found the courage to knock down the wall I built around myself, I wouldn’t be the happy human bean that I am with an imagination unafraid to run rampant.
For right now…
- Journal about your day so far! What would you like the rest of the day to look like? How do you feel about the events and interactions so far?
- Make a playlist to fit your mood when you’re feeling your most creative. Or just to fit your mood right this very second.
- Write a story! Fiction or non-fiction. Or a poem. Just put words on paper, really, about any and everything. The person you sat next to at the bus stop today, or the guy next to you in line to get coffee, or your professor with the weird quirks, or your best friend and all the adventures you want to have together.
- Read a book! Or go buy a book or order one if you don’t have a book right now. Even if you don’t have a ton of free time for pleasure reading, just carrying a book around can be comforting & stimulating to read a page or two when you’re waiting in line or sitting around campus in between classes.
- Practice yoga, on your own or in the studio. Getting to your mat is the most difficult part, after that, it’s just you, your body, mind, and spirit, and you’ve got this.
Some tunes to jam/daydream/make magic happen to: