Many people think that if you’re a creative person, it must mean that you’re an artist, a writer, a musician, or something along those lines. But actually, the definition of creativity is very broad. Even everyday activities like setting up a filing system, preparing a meal, and writing computer code fit the definition.
According to Merriam Webster, it’s “the ability to make new things or think of new ideas.” So, since you have opposable thumbs, reasoning ability and can solve problems, you are creative by default.
In her book, The Artist’s Way, Julia Cameron points out that all of us are creative at some level when she says, “Creativity is the natural order of life,” and “The refusal to be creative is self-will and is counter to our true nature.”
Being in the Zone
Cameron also discusses the link between creativity and the Divine, explaining that “The heart of creativity is an experience of the mystical union; the heart of the mystical union is an experience of creativity.”
She’s not the only one to make that link. In fact, she cites Johannes Brahms: “Straightaway the ideas flow in upon me, directly from God.” And Joseph Chilton Pearce: “We must accept that this creative pulse within us is God’s creative pulse itself.”
Rollo May, a mid-20th century psychologist who wrote The Courage to Create, said this about creativity: “The experience is one of heightened consciousness: ecstasy.”
Athletes call it being the zone, which happens when they are creating experiences with their talents and physical exertions. Bill Russell, Boston Celtics superstar (1956–1969), wrote about it in his autobiography, Second Wind:
Every so often a Celtics game would heat up so that it would become more than a physical or even mental game, and would be magical… When it happened I could feel my play rise to a new level... The feeling would spread to the other guys, and we’d all levitate. Then the game would just take off, and there’d be a natural ebb and flow that reminded you of how rhythmic and musical basketball is supposed to be. I’d find myself thinking, “This is it. I want this to keep going,” and I’d actually be rooting for the other team. When their players made spectacular moves, I wanted their shots to go into the bucket; that’s how pumped up I’d be... The game would move so quickly that every fake, cut and pass would be surprising, and yet nothing could surprise me. It was almost as if we were playing in slow motion. During those spells I could almost sense how the next play would develop and where the next shot would be taken… My premonitions would be consistently correct, and I always felt then that I not only knew all the Celtics by heart but also all the opposing players, and that they all knew me. There have been many times in my career when I felt moved or joyful, but these were the moments when I had chills pulsing up and down my spine.
Creativity is one of the best ways to observe your connection with the Divine. But it’s not just the act of creating. It’s your immersion in the zone, which as you can tell from Russell’s description involves being full present in the moment.
One of the biggest challenges we face is trying to stay in the zone when we feel like we’re not doing zone-worthy stuff. As soon as you have such a thought, you immediately begin to feel disconnected. However, getting back into the zone can be accomplished in two simple steps.
The first step is awareness. Be aware that your mind will unwittingly choose unhelpful thoughts from time to time. Don’t worry. We all have unhelpful thoughts in our heads. They originated from outside influences during our formative years. Whenever your mind chooses them, it’s merely because the inner voice of the authentic you has been temporarily muted. You know that the real you would never choose unhelpful thoughts, right?
So step one is awareness, and step two is reframing. You can reframe the feeling by choosing a more helpful thought.
For example, maybe something like this goes through your mind: “I really want to work on my creative project right now rather than having to do the drudgery of earning a paycheck.”
Next, you start dwelling on your dissatisfaction. That thought of dissatisfaction gives rise to the perception of separation from the Divine flow, and you’re yanked out the zone. Of course, you aren’t really separated – your attention is. Nevertheless, that’s what it feels like. You are aware that you’re dissatisfied and feeling disconnected, and you know that it has stemmed from an unhelpful thought. You are noticing.
Certainly, at this point you could choose a more helpful thought like, “I want to reconnect,” or “I want to stay connected.” However, is that enough? Maybe. Maybe not.
This is when reframing can come in handy. You choose a thought that is not only more helpful, but it’s also one that reframes the situation. After all, you need your mind to believe it, and since this will come from your inner wise self, it needs to be a resonant truth that your mind can absorb.
Here’s an example of how you could reframe the thought from the example above: “Okay, I’m not currently working on my creative project, but this IS how I’m earning money right now. Since I want money, and this will create money in my life, this is what I want to do right now. And this is how I’m being creative right now.”
When you choose the thought that everything you do serves your creativity in some way, then you can more easily stay connected to the Divine.
You Live In God
Osho, the Indian philosopher, once said, “When your creativity comes to a climax, when your whole life becomes creative, you live in God… Love what you do. Be meditative while you are doing it – whatsoever it is!”
You ARE a creative person. Every single moment, you are creating your life with your thoughts. Every day you solve problems with your creativity. Maybe tomorrow you’ll even go so far as to paint or sculpt or compose in the effort to consciously express creativity.
Additionally, you are always connected to the Divine creative flow. The question is, “Where is your attention?” To regain the feeling of connection, notice what thought has shifted your awareness away and choose another one that you can reframe to be more helpful. Trust that through your creative expression, you do live in God.
Angela Loëb is an author, speaker and self-development consultant who loves to study, teach, and write about mind mastery, spirituality, career, and life purpose. More at http://about.me/angelarloeb