What does it mean to be a “creative”? And does the love of your art derail your life sometimes?
For the purpose of our discussion, I’m defining a “creative” as a creative thinker – someone who thinks about life from new angles. This term easily applies to most artists and often is used to describe someone who makes a living through their creativity. The Urban Dictionary defines “creative” as “a person with a never-ending, intense desire to produce based on originality of thought, expression, etc. that impacts nearly every aspect of their life, both in negative and positive ways.”
Whether or not your dance is your paid profession, chances are you are at least partly a creative.
So now that we’ve established that… can I ask you a personal question?
Have you ever found yourself so immersed and engaged by your creative work that it has overrun your schedule, narrowed your life focus and perhaps even begun to degrade your relationships with others outside your creative world?
Let me just get this out there.
I love my work.
I guess it’s hard to imagine someone who wouldn’t love a life full of dance and music, right? But it’s not all pancakes and bunnies all of the time. I spend a huge amount of my day at my laptop working on the “backend” of the business. And I totally dig it! I like it so much so that it’s the first thing I do most mornings, what I do all day, do from my phone at stoplights and often do late into the night. It makes me a very productive person, sure…but I have recently found myself, um… lacking, in other areas of my life.
I have a fabulous new choreography to share but there’s nothing to eat for dinner.
I launched an awesome new online course but my husband and I haven’t had a date night in weeks.
I traveled and performed all summer long but haven’t connected with my friends back home in months!
Can you relate?
Maybe it’s the illusive “work / life balance” that so many people talk about. But I think it’s something more. As creatives we are drawn to our art in ways that are hard to explain and even harder to resist.
How do we maintain and nurture that creativity while continuing to care for our family and our home, connect with our friends and maintain our health?
I’ve got news for you.
I don’t know! (Oh wait… did you think I would have an answer?!)
My amazing friend Tiffany (of Belly Dance Bundle fame) suggested I read a book called “The Accidental Creative” by Todd Henry. This book is to blame for my musings…but I am ever so grateful because it has made me aware of the pitfalls of the creative life. The author claims the book will also help me navigate said pitfalls. I’ve just gotta finish it first. 😉
I will report back to you when I do!