We all live in a ridiculously fast-paced world; surrounded by the utter chaos of work and technology available at the disposition of our fingertips; juggling with life trying to balance an intense lifestyle; that demands; rather forces people to stay updated; stay connected with everyone and everything all at once, while the time just passes by right in front of our eyes. Being over-productive, working long hours, diving deep into work, and neglecting one’s own well-being, health, or sleep are somewhat celebrated and considered a trait of intellectual superiority. There is a constant need to keep doing one thing or the other all the time; and by the time you realize what is happening; you are already so ahead of yourself, that slowing down and relaxing for a while seems a far distant dream. You find yourself constantly chasing those milestones of your life, one after another; yet do not feel a sense of content or satisfaction; because as soon as you reach one goal; another one in your bucket list already awaits.
If you find any of these situations relatable or describing your present mindset; well, then just stop whatever you were doing and take a long deep breath. Yes, right now. Because I am about to tell you, from my subjective and personal experience that anytime is a good time to realize that chasing happiness superficially will only do more harm than good to you in the long-run. Therefore, we need to and we must take out a little bit of time for ourselves every now and then. just for our well-being because at this rate, self-care is more than just a luxurious spa and more of an instinctive need towards self-preservation. Let’s start this by adding a lit bit of creativity to your regular routine until it gradually finds its way to become a habit one day, but first, have patience with yourself.
Creativity is not an exclusive skill that comes naturally to a selected few; rather it is a lifestyle one can indulge in any form, at any age, and yes, without any prior experience. The very notion of being exceptionally talented to be good at expressing yourself or being creative is a myth. One can develop an interest in almost anything, that they truly enjoy doing, and can get better at it with constant learning and practice. There are various reasons psychologists and researchers suggest why being creative in your daily routine can be beneficial for you. For starters, it boosts your brain, which means engaging in creative tasks activate the production of new neurons, which help in maintaining a healthy nervous system. A healthy nervous system can prompt you to feel happier and satisfied as the things or activities you enjoy or experience pleasure while doing release endorphins that reduce your stress; serotonin that stabilizes your mood, and dopamine that contributes to achieving an overall sense of pleasure. Activities that are creative in nature alone can help in improving the emotional health and well-being of a person significantly.
The idea is to engage in some form of creativity in your routine. Meditation might seem daunting for people who have trouble focusing or concentrating for a long time. For hyperactive people who also have overthinking traits, it is quite difficult to feel relaxed by indulging in meditation. For such people, I would suggest calligraphy as one of the best creative hobbies that can significantly reduce the stress levels and calm your mind. The idea behind doing this is not to become the best calligrapher in the world; well kudos if you become one, but to slow down and enjoy the process of writing or lettering. As you write slowly, your eyes focus on your hand movements, making you more aware of what you are actually doing. This makes your body and mind feel empowered of controlling the pace while being consciously aware of the present. Not too fast, not too slow, just living in the moment.
Other than that, there are people for whom art is equivalent to therapy. Indulging in painting, drawing, doodling, illustrating all play a major role in acting as a catalyst to ignite your hidden passion and needless to say, you don’t have to focus on how good your art is, or whether people will like it or not; as being creative is not about the final outcome, but the process itself. It may sound idealistic, but taking out a few minutes from your busy schedule to put your mind and heart into doing something for yourself is possible; only if you are willing to. Even if you feel your art is not good enough to be considered a good painting or you don’t have enough knowledge about it; the important question is: did you enjoy doing it? If yes, then the purpose is already achieved. Does it look like it is made by a 3-years-old kid? Well, then congratulations on reconnecting with your inner child, who really did enjoy splashing colors on the paper and drawing outside the outlines during childhood, why because it was fun. If you could do the same without the fear of judgment or criticism when you were a child then why not now? Just cut loose with whatever is holding you back, shake your day off, and dive into a relaxing activity where your imagination can run freely; be it on a canvas or on a paper.
What else you can do to indulge in creativity? Well, write a poem (even if it is two lines, and even if does not rhyme); sing your favorite song or dance to your favorite tunes; even if you are off-sync or even if you are off-beats. Create a playlist filled with music from your favorite singers or bands that can help you to alleviate your mood or just give you company on difficult days. Feeling artistic and need inspiration? Then create a mood board in your journal, Pinterest or Instagram full of aesthetics that you like. For me, it is usually pictures of the sky, beaches, auroras, nature, lo-fi themes, academia, and anime aesthetics. You too can find your own aesthetic and fill your galleries with stuff that can actually inspire you on one fine day to pick that brush and paint your own sky.
The sooner you start to enjoy and living in the present moment; the sooner you will learn to appreciate little things and moments again. I said again because you were already doing these when you were a child. May be stepping into adulthood invited a lot of responsibilities upon you, or maybe it left you with experiences that made you wiser, or maybe not! But, who said, you cannot have a lit bit of creativity in your life to calm your chaos. So whether it is painting, writing, singing, dancing, learning a new language, playing a new instrument, carry it out regardless, not necessarily as a skill to obtain, but a creative endeavor to indulge yourself in at the end of the day.
Story contributed by Jasmine Khan.
Author Bio: Jasmine is a writer by passion and profession with a degree in business management. She likes to explore new places, art styles, and learn about different cultures. Her creative interests have landed her into learning the Korean language, calligraphy, and digital illustration. In her leisure time, she is mostly creating art, reading webtoons, watching K-dramas, or gushing over BTS. To get to know more about her creative side, follow her Instagram page: EasyJournalLife!