Have you ever wondered why it’s so easy to be happy as a child, but as adults we tend to experience true joy less and less often? You could argue that it’s the increase in responsibility or the awareness of life’s problems that cause us to be realists instead of oblivious and free. But think closer about the shifts over time…as children we play, then we get to our adolescent years and start wondering what others think and our focus starts to turn outward. Then we realize we have to support ourselves and most of the time, we again turn outward and start looking for what the world asks of us to make our lives run smoothly. We stop coloring. We stop pretend play. Some of us completely give up an artistic, athletic, or other creative hobbies in favor of skills and activities that support a steady and socially acceptable income.
What really happens, if that allow our creative skills decline because we aren’t sure how to transfer those skills from childhood to adulthood. Sometimes we catch moments of creative joy – playing music, immersed in culture at a concert, crafting a gift for a new baby or decorating our home. Sometimes we engage in disconnected forms of creativity to try and mimic those feelings of joyous freedom with drug use, or creating conflict in relationships, buying things we don’t want or need. What we are really doing is feeling our creative energy (which we all possess) and not allowing it to manifest in way that serves us.
We can stifle it, which makes us sick, or we can choose an outlet that isn’t healthy or even appealing which leaves us unfulfilled. When we don’t know how to be creative, we don’t know how to be happy.
We can develop harmful beliefs that we don’t have enough money or time, or that we simply don’t deserve to be creative. We decide that creativity is for the lucky few who are talented artists or children.
The truth is that creativity takes on many forms. Everything in our lives is the result of our thoughts and desires which we then created in our own reality – so why not unleash it? Creativity doesn’t have to mean art (though art is a great way to get flowing) – it basically means fun and ideas. Fixing an old car, playing a sport, decorating your home, planning vacations, designing your wardrobe, starting a business, joining a club…they are all manifestations of ideas and creative skills.
We can increase our happiness by exercising our creative muscles every day. Be intentional with your thoughts. Think about the last time you created joy in your life. What can you do right now to create a moment of joy? What can you start doing daily to get those creative juices flowing? Set those intentions andwatch your happiness level climb sky high!