I recently heard someone say, “Creativity for the sake of reaching a production goal is factory work.” The question I have been asking is, “Do we ever really create just for the sake of creativity?”
When I sit down to write a song I often find my mind jumping past the writing process to the part where I am recording and releasing the song. I begin to fantasize about how the song will be received and what accolades I will win as a result. This is my narcissism. But do I need to be certain of the result to be able to engage in the process? I believe there are two things that keep us from engaging in an unfettered creative flow.
One | We live in an outcome-based, goal-oriented society. This is not inherently bad, but it can have negative effects when trying to create something completely original with no limitations on what direction our creative process takes.
Two | We are generally undisciplined when it comes to our creative processes. I know this statement sounds perpendicular to the previous one, but I think it is important that we know our own tendencies in creative moments so well that we are able to be intentional about placing limitations on ourselves to achieve the desired result.
I am beginning to think that our primary goal should be to find joy in procedure, to find beauty in the making. When we submit our ideas to a self-imposed set of standards or a guiding creative philosophy, I think we will find far more joy and satisfaction with both the creative process and the resulting outcome than we’ve previously experienced.