“Oh I’m not a creative person. I could never do what you do.” I hear this all the time. And there’s just so many things wrong with that statement.
We all have a creative story we carry with us. And it’s just that – a story, a work of fiction that we’ve written over the years. We’re so familiar with it we’ve let it become our reality without even realizing it. But the great thing about being the author is that we can change our creative story anytime we want.
You say you’re not a creative person. How do you know that? Did your kindergarten teacher criticize your drawing of a cat? Did your lasagna poison the entire family reunion and you vowed never to cook again? Did your Home Economics teacher call you by your older sister’s name for an entire semester and throw you off your game so much you almost flunked Grade 9 sewing? (True story, by the way.) Have you actually even tried anything creative?
Maybe you’ve tried something once and it didn’t turn out. You knitted socks that were three sizes too big. Or your first couple of attempts at watercolour just turned into big muddy messes. That’s okay. Very few of us are born talented enough to create a masterpiece on our first attempt. You weren’t born knowing how to use the internet (at least not if you’re from my generation) yet here you are, reading posts and liking pages. If you’re really drawn to a creative pursuit, give yourself time to learn and practice. If, however, every time you pick up a pair of knitting needles you think “Gee I hate knitting” perhaps it’s time to try something else.
The second part of the statement also needs to be rewritten. “I could never do what you do.” But that’s the whole point of creativity – do what you do, not what somebody else does. I’m not asking you to invent a whole new genre of creative arts, just do things in a way that comes from your heart, not somebody else’s. While there’s merit in copying a particular style while you’re learning, we have more than enough factories and machines to churn out exact replicas.
So rewrite your creative story if you have to. Yell “plot twist” and move on. Just don’t let a work of fiction limit your ability to heal and grow.