Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Whispers, Echoes, Ideas

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Busy-ness kills creativity.

My life is full of responsibilities right now. Too many responsibilities, it seems, but they are mine to deal with. So I do. I rush from one meeting to the next, from home to a class to the store and back again. At home, I scurry to cross things off my to-do list and make sure N is crossing things off his school to-do list. Everything I do involves an element of creativity and flair, but not in an overt way. Some days I feel very productive and some days I feel like a gerbil in an exercise wheel. Lots of effort with little travel. Drained. Stagnant.

In the rush to get things done, we lose the chance to savor, reflect, and enjoy quiet moments. It is in the quiet moments that I hear myself think and creativity is born.

Whispers of wishes.

Echoes of dreams.

Threads of ideas.

If those whispers aren't heard, if the echoes fade away, and if the threads aren't stitched together I begin to feel frazzled. Empty. Dissatisfied.


A friend once called this feeling a crisis of creativity. When life and responsibilities overwhelm me causing the artistic part of my soul to suffer. Projects I want to complete reproach me as I pass them. Projects I want to start sit impatiently waiting their turn. Time and busy-ness are my enemy. I sigh when I see the holidays approaching because I know my schedule will get worse before it gets better.

Usually clearing my calendar for a few days and a shopping trip to a favorite raw materials store (craft store, an art shop, a fabric store, a garden center, a bookstore) cures me of creatius crisisus. A day or two indulging in hands on work or intense concentration fulfills me.

When I can't clear an entire day or weekend, I try to work in a little bit of creative thought every day. Just now, I spent an hour in the my favorite part of the garden on the pretense of watering pansies. (Check mark the to-do list.) But, as I sat in the swing and listened to the leaves fall, I relaxed. In that moment, I enjoyed the beauty of the little garden we've created. The last of the rose blossoms. The cheerful faces of the white and purple pansies. Birdsong. I savored the mellow sunlight through the thinning trees.

And whispers, echoes, and ideas stirred in my heart.

I'll get to the repainting the shabby garden swing (not the purple one) and I'll get to the quilt I want to make. I'll get to the porch wreath that wants to be redone. I'll get back to the book I'm writing, as well as the photography fine prints I want to do. It'll come.

For the moment, it was nice to take a breather, commune with the Creator, and know that my creativity shimmers within me....a reflection of His.....waiting for the opportunity to burst forth.

3 Other Creative Souls are Saying:

Becky said...

Brilliant writing! Introspective thoughts! My mind and heart are full of "whispers, echoes, and threads," and when I take the time to listen and weave, a beautiful tapestry evolves. But, that is too rare of an occurence and my "creative soul" is not being properly nourished. In fact, it is on the brink of becoming anorexic! My goal in the New Year is to change that. What I have been doing no longer works. Deb, I will be in touch with you to get your ideas on a thought I have.

DebMc said...

Oh, Becky, anorexic creativity! I hear you and understand completely.

Together, we should cook up a feast and indulge ourselves. I'll look forward to hearing from you.

Lisa said...

You really should put all these wonderful posts together into a devotional for the creative souls of the world. I'd buy a copy or two ;-) You are such a good writer. Your words speak to me like no other writer I've ever read. Such lovely truths and such wonderful ideas to ponder about creativity.