Creativity is the souls way of communicating to the world.
Especially when you find that one thing that you can get lost doing for hours.
Do you have that one thing? That place you can go to where everything just stands still and you feel more alive, more in sync and more connected then when you are doing anything else? Do you know what I'm talking about?
For as long as I can remember I've always loved the idea of building and refinishing things. Whether it was building something from scratch or taking an old, dilapidated piece of furniture and breathing life back into it, thoughts of both often swirled around my head.
Growing up with a Carpenter father and an Interior Designer mother, creativity was all around me. This initially was very intimidating because I lacked the confidence to see that even though I came from creative parents, I too was creative. My creativity just looked different.
However, I've always be drawn to working with wood in particular. When I was younger, I use to fake being sick just so I could ride along with my dad to all of his job sites. I'd stroll through the framed craftsman homes he was working on pretending they were mind and that I was the one designing them. I'd close my eyes and envision what each room would be, where the fireplace would go, where someone would spend their time cooking for the ones they loved.
The sounds of hammering and sawing danced in the air and the sweet piney smell of sawdust would waft around my nose. Maybe that's the reason I love working with wood so much, it takes me back to happy memories. But I also think it's more, I think it's just part of who I am; a creator.
It wasn't until I moved into my first home on a fifty acre vineyard and farm in Oregon and really had full creative control that I started tapping into my creative side again. I started with small projects and grew into larger ones, making a tufted ottoman from scratch or building a full reclaimed wood wall in the office.
When I went through my divorce and moved back to Seattle and in with my brother and sister-in-law it was as if the fire burned out. My creativity was lost. Granted, this was an incredibly difficult time for me and I was focusing on other things, I didn't tap back into that part of me until I eventually moved down to Encinitas, California and back into my own place again. It was as if a light switch was turned on and I could feel the fire slowly getting bigger and brighter inside.
I didn't start making my wood art until November of 2015. I began with wood burning similar designs and then these Boho Bullheads. Wood burning came literally out of nowhere. I was driving down Encinitas Boulevard and I heard the words "wood burning" in my head and had to go home and look up what it even was. After that, I bought the wood burning tool and started playing around.
However, in all honestly, for whatever reason, I was incredibly intimidated by using a saw. But one day I just started. I made the first cut and slowly put the pieces together of what felt like a beautiful geometric puzzle.
When I realized I had gone about six hours without stopping and eating I knew I was on to something. I knew I had tapped into that creative zone and there was no stopping now.
This creative zone is called your Zone of Genius. That thing you can do for hours without feeling like you need to stop. Time stands still. You get lost, fully engrossed in the very thing you are doing. Its love. For self, for the very thing you are creating, for the gift you are creating for the world.
Whether it's a tangible product or not, when you are in this zone you ARE creating a gift to the world because you are happy. You are beaming a vibration out that radiates bliss, joy, peace and an overall state of just feeling content, Your soul is literally communicating to the world. What if everyone knew of this place and spent more time there? Think of what the world would feel like!
So you are probably thinking, "That's great Amanda but I don't have a creative side." I'm not kidding you when I say that I used to think I didn't either. Some people learn of this of themselves at a very early age and for some of us it takes a little more time and patients.
However, I have a few ideas on how spark that inner fire. But remember, for some, it happens right away. For others, it takes a little time and a little more uncovering. Creativity is such a broad idea. A lot of us pigeon-hole it and make it very black and white but peruse a site like Etsy and you can see there are so many forms of creativity.
However, it doesn't stop with just crafting something. Creativity is performing. Creativity is taking care of and arranging houseplants, creativity is cooking a delicious and thoughtful meal. Creativity is working on your car. It's trimming the hedges. It really is whatever you want it to look like. The world is your oyster.
If you are stuck, here are a few questions to ponder.
1. Think back to when you were a child. What were the things you loved do? What made you happiest? What lit you up?
2. What do you dream of? Where does your mind drift off to?
3. What thoughts pop into your head on repeat that might feel random or out of the blue? (i.e.: wood burning)
4. What does your ideal day look and feel like? (Even if it doesn't make sense. How do you see yourself? Where do you see yourself?How do you feel?)
5. Are there any synchronicities that keep happening in your life? PAY ATTENTION TO THOSE!
I think mulling over these questions is a really great place to start. You don't have to have all or any of the answers right now. I strongly believe that just starting the process of thinking about it lights that spark and over time, you'll learn how to feed the fire. For me, I started to tap back into my creative side when I took ownership of it. When I moved into my house and wanted to create a comfortable, happy, loving space to live in. One I felt proud to call my home. Everything just opened up from there.
Don't let all the little details overwhelm you and if you do get overwhelmed, definitely don't let that stop you! Whatever you do, keep moving forward.