One of the benefits (and subsequent dangers) in modern society is that creation is optional. How many people do you know who know carpentry, ballet, or how to fix a car? We can get all of our material goods and entertainment from somewhere else for very cheap and very quickly. But just because we can…should we? In my experience, the creative act is a benefit in and of itself. It activates our latent energies, keeps us healthy, and helps us connect with others.
Creativity Creates Energy
One of my first big home improvement projects was renovating our kitchen. It came as a whim but ended up being an enjoyable (though difficult) summer-long project. In the process of deciding to do-it-ourselves, my wife and I not only saved thousands of dollars, we also unearthed a new hobby! After completing the project, I immediately began making a long list of new projects to get excited about. Creativity doesn’t just make something, it awakens energy for bigger and better acts of creation. The mind immediately goes to what greater thing you can do. It pays dividends because that investment is compounded as you continue to learn and grow.
I don’t want to give a narrow view of what counts as creation. Creation could be a Youtube channel, choreography, drawing, building train sets, writing, photography, etc. As long as you are making something that may be of value to someone (even just yourself), you are creating. Watch as your mental energies soar when you find a creative act that you enjoy.
Creation Makes us Healthy
Science is a peculiar thing in that you can use (or rather mis-use) it to prove anything. Bearing that in mind, there is science that shows acts of creativity can make you healthier both mentally and physically. This aligns with my intuition and experience because in most cases, creation is a highly coordinated physical and/or mental act. In my last article I talked a little bit about how cab drivers who stop driving have their brains begin to physically shrink. Similarly, it stands to reason that the coordination involved in dancing, carpentry, or playing an instrument would impart similar benefits to the brain. Here is an article that goes into the science.
I consider myself personable. I like people, and can generally do well in a crowd or at a social event. Even though it is no major chore, my least favorite part of social interactions is “small talk”. This usually consists of people trying to explain to others why they are interesting. The unfortunate reality is that most people are not interesting because they are consumers rather than creators. Most people do well talking about sports, fashion, or celebrity gossip. Honestly it is a good way to connect with others. But truly interesting people always have a “project”. They pull out their phone and want to show you their latest table they made, or talk about a book they read and are writing an article about. These people have a certain magnetism because they are always building and learning. Next time you are at a social gathering, see how many conversations are consumption oriented and how many are creation oriented.
I hope this article helped shed some light on the importance of creating. What are some ways you create?