Indulge your creativity to create a better life.
I estimate that all children at some point in their life will be asked the question “what do you want to be when you grow up?” One could almost imagine a sparkle in their eye behind a closed door as they dream up a future filled with possibility and seemingly infinite choice. However, as research repeatedly shows, these choices become shaped by their environment; influenced by what they experience and coloured by what they see. Little by little, that child begins to dim their effervescence to fit within the boundaries of what’s considered acceptable in their reality.
The purpose of this article is to allow you to ponder the question, whose reality is it anyway…?
When we consider that every single piece of advertising is initially conceived in the mind of a creative somewhere, it naturally follows that everything we see, hear, read and subscribe to on television and social media is the derivative of someone else’s imagination.
Take for example the dream of the white picket fence. It had to start somewhere, right? There must have been one person somewhere who decided to build a fence and paint it white. It just so happened that so many others liked their idea it grew to become a middle-class ideal. Or take the waif girl who was the muse for a fashion designer’s creativity. Tall and slender, she modelled the couture in just the way the designer envisioned for her. It made headlines and, more importantly, those headlines made money so more people bought into it. Suddenly our screens are filled with images of what media has sold as the ideal body image.
I use these examples because I can still get caught in this trap which can invoke fear, self-doubt and insecurity. But then I remind myself that every ‘ideal’ was, once upon a time, just someone else’s imagination so why would I want to subscribe to theirs when it’s only limiting my own?
Is there a limitation blocking your creative drive or your sense of contentment? What is beneath it? Strip it right back and be curious. Where did it originate from? The story behind the limiting belief isn’t all that important, because we can easily get hooked into blaming others which is another way of avoiding what’s really going on. The important bit is seeing the limitation for what it is and deciding what you do with it now, moving forward.
Ask yourself, what would your life look like today if that limitation wasn’t there? Take out a journal, do some reflective writing. What would you most like to experience? What action would you next take to get you where you really want to be? Now go do it, one step at a time.
First seen in Australia’s Content Magazine.