The language we use with different levels of self-critical awareness exposes the buttressing mindset we operate from to commit to the reality we choose to engage and re-create.
Therefore, by presuming some people are born as either irreparably creatively challenged or contrariwise inequitably creatively empowered, we buy into the thought system that creativity is indeed an elite where some are undeservingly creatively privileged and others creatively star-crossed or compromised. And this couldn't be further from the truth. Here's why.
The truth of the matter is creativity is irreducibly more multidimensional and inclusive a reality than this defective binary economy of creatively haves and haves-not presupposes.
So what IS creativity then?
Creativity is how you pivot yourself out of a space of limitation and into one of expansive innovational possibility where reality is redefinable, negotiable and requalified through a strong bias towards ideation-to-action. Creativity is the walk between ideation and execution where adept pivoting is how you argue and redefine your finite reality into more.
Okay, but what does that mean?
It means limitation is the starting point of creativity. Creativity demands limitation without ever being burdened by it. In this fashion, creativity and limitation are mutually expansive and necessary through their radical interconnectedness. Creatives are folx that learn to make limitation just as necessary as it is equal parts purposeful and affirming. Creatives learn to exploit questions like:
How will I commit to making this kind of "impossible" inarguably real and inevitably possible?
How can I do better than the binding (artificial/arbitrary/limiting) norm in place? What's my proposed higher-caliber alternate to that norm efficiency-wise?
What is a better AND more imaginatively positively disruptive way to do this?
How to do what is reputably unexpected and even downright unpopular yet necessary in spaces corrupted by the bias towards limitation (like the one I am in)?
Ultimately, creativity is the strategic art of making an unexpected or even unpopular outcome situationally inevitable and more efficiently productive and results-bearing than the established limiting norm. It is the tension between the perception of feasibility, the condemnation of possibility, and the limitation of material reality that makes creativity so staggeringly innovational and mind-expanding.
Creativity is the smartest way to argue with reality and execute a vision of non-normalcy into possibility that becomes efficiency and reality itself. Creativity is finding tools where nothingness was presumed to micro-actively smartly construct the ONE alternative that had been most dismissed and delegitimized out of hand. Now, that alternate vision of reality becomes THE most revolutionarily efficient way of getting things down with ridiculous unsuspected value added to boot.
Here are a few examples of what this all means in fuller context:
limitation: "I don't have money"-driven mindset is a mental posture overridden with a bias towards lack, deficit, disempowerment, and limitation. / creativity: In this context, it means strategizing to secure severally complementary alternative streams of compoudable external funding (ex. crowdfunding, scholarships, contests, fundraising campaigns, loans, etc.) and organizing those into prioritizes, and micro-actively implement them in order. Also, it comes down to creating wealth by prioritizing freeness through curated freeware and worldclass free education through established prevetted sources (ex. check out free University conference cycle, Marie Forleo free educational content library resource, free digitized one-click-away library resources, etc.) to smartly limit, mitigate, and avoid extraneous costs where intelligent and strategic freeness proves more financially congruent.
limitation: "I can't speak XYZ language" - mindset / creativity: In this one, creativity amounts to committing to self-creating an artificial virtual immersive environment by tailoring a holistic self-learning strategy (ex. get paired up for free with natives from all over the world using the Tandem app, join the international student communities cross-university to grow & build your for-connection network in that target language, personalize cell alert reminders to practice/talk/think out loud in the language, access free educational content from international library network online, join the 30DaySpeakingChallenge, attend online international polyglot summits for next to nothing, etc.). It is a state wherein you empower yourself to self-disrupt into active creational engagement through self-talks, language exchanges, immersion. And as a supplement to that orientation, creativity beckons you turning to better self-established industry authorities to coach you through increasingly more individualized strategic self-learning. Start with leveraging free content base off of curate platforms and leading experts (ex. Instagram, YouTube, etc.) - internalize those norms and actionable wisdom and connect the dots between their context and your reality. Then uplevel by engaging live with said experts by culling your immediate circle of reach and influence then leveraging those to collaborate with higher-caliber established industry giants operating at a transnational level (ex. mentoring programs, as volunteer to events, as a contributor/collaborator, etc.).
Creativity is strategic thinking and planning made purposefully innovational
As Marie Forleo teaches us in her brilliant best-seller book "Everything is figuroutable" (check it out!), creativity is "refusing to be refused". It is a conscious choice to act radically every single time that posture renders concrete the alternate reality you seek to instigate. It is not an inherent quality you luck into through the fortuitous alignment of genetics. It is a choice to continuously learn to do better by resisting the urge to get subliminated into a limiting norm that cheats us out of our curiosity to challenge, to destabilize, and to innovate.
The truth behind creativity is that ...
It is a mindset. An undying volition to be more adamant about your commitment to transforming reality than your complacency to buy into whatever normal is inferred to be in your world. It is a choice to elevate your mindset and perspective by negotiating openly, actively, fruitfully with reality and finding new ways to be efficiently more intelligent and remarkably than before.
And yes everyone is born with it ...
But few every tap into it! Why? Well because the thought that creativity is a default human.e attribute is deflated into the elitistic poppycock that is rampant and defines how we grant creative rights to folx based on empty-calorie diminishing rhetoric in an unchallenged and outmoded thought system (of the creative haves and haves-not). But as Brendon Burchard tells us times and times again: "Common sense is not common practice." To which I'll add - quoting Lisa Nichols (minimally paraphrasing her); some people NEED you to be extraordinary to get themselves off the hook and stay un-extraordinary (on purpose!). So just because all are born with it it, it doesn't ensue forth from that that all use it. Furthermore, some folx created this artificial need for them to believe creativity is a genetically rigged ecosphere, for them to validate how they choose to live creatively impoverished and self-limiting with the sexy-looking excuse that they lost at the "ovarian lottery" (Warren Buffett).
Being creative is a chosen reality and capacity that is strategically informed and not genetically predetermined
Now that you know the truth behind creativity and why everyone has it, what are the concrete ways in which you will honor your agency to be creatively empowered, responsible, enlightened, and expansive over falling pray to arbitrary norms and have them define the texture and circumpherence of your world as a creative agent? Here are a few prompts and actionable call-to-actions to creatively steer you onwards and keep you faithtful to that new sanitizing definition of creativity:
Every time you are tempted to complacent and look at limitations as if they were the ultimate judges of what is allowed to be made and kept real and possible, ignite your own daring by seeing reality as forever reversible and never fixed or irrevocable.
Ask yourself whether or not you are trying to get yourself off the hook as Lisa Nichols teaches us to justify you dying into the limitation you are re-creating for yourself where you live as creatively destabilized, challenged, and compromised.
Even the best of systems can be operationalized better, particularly seeing as our human.e agency corrupts and is what allows us to be perfectible and get perfected. What are things that can be rethought to render your work/system/process more efficient? Remember, creativity is not necessarily dramatically or overtly flamboyant. Creativity can be and is oftentimes but a compounding of smaller lower-scale innovational refashionings, re-imaginings that make operationability better with less fuss with the elegance of better clarity.
Remember love, your thoughts reveal the mindset wherefrom you self-observe and engage your world. They are not irremediably defining but wait they have the capacity to define you. Therefore, make sure limitations are the starting point and not the ender of how creativity comes to be massaged into your framework as the thing that challenges your reality to be more. Generous. Possibility-minded. Expansive.