8 Ways to be Creative
"Oh, I wish I could be creative like that!"
This is a sentence I have heard way too many times. That ends now. Today I'm going to try to help you find your next creative outlet to get you out of that creative rut (or at least try to point you in the right direction).
First things first:
1. Everyone has the potential for creativity.
2. Being creative does not only mean producing something aesthetically pleasing, i.e. the stuff you see on Pinterest.
Many of us are familiar with Myers-Briggs' 16 Personalities and Chapman's 5 Love Languages, but have you ever heard of Gardner's 8 Signs of Intelligence? While the theory itself is controversial, something about it struck me. I've never been one to believe that one-fits-all nonsense because I think we are each fearfully and wonderfully made. I think we all possess each category of intelligence to some degree but some are more pronounced than others and that makes us so beautifully unique. For instance, I enjoy producing "traditional" types of art (spacial) and I'm drawn to the written word and take great pleasure in picking apart literature to understand it better (linguistic) but when it comes to playing sports or avoiding stationary pieces of furniture (kinesthetic)– the struggle is real.
At the time, I saved a screenshot of the theory and the categories and the more I looked at this list, the more I realized that each category has creative potential. So after much procrastination and uncertainty, I thought I'd share with you how I think these categories could play into our creative habits. Below, you'll find a list of each of the "intelligences" with a quick description and a few creative suggestions.
For the "non-creatives:" I challenge you to find the category that you identify with most and try one of the suggestions.
For the creatives: I challenge you to find the category that you identify with the least and try one of the suggestions.
Remember that not every "creative" thing you do has to be shared and validated by others. Sometimes it's nice just to create something for yourself, and that's totally okay. You're a creative person, whether other people see it or not.
8 Types of Creativity
Bodily-Kinsthetic: You have excellent control over your body's movements and can handle objects skillfully. If there is a problem that can be solved by using your hands and feet, you're on it. You have a good sense of timing and coordination and enjoy physical activities such as dancing or sports.
Suggestion: Try your hand at model building, invent a new sport, create a dance to your favorite song.
Intra-personal: You have access to your own feelings. You understand your strengths, weaknesses, and desires. You may spend time analyzing your own behavior and how you would like to grow. You may ponder the human condition and have an appreciation for humanity's complexities.
Suggestion: Try journaling or mind-mapping your thoughts. Consider coloring or painting your feelings. (The best way I can describe this is to listen to a song, close your eyes, and visualize the song- what are the emotions it elicits? do those emotions have a color? where are you? in a forest? city? crowded room? Alright, now try this with your own emotions and thoughts.)
Interpersonal: You have the ability to discern and respond to the moods, temperaments, motivations, and desires of other people. You understand verbal and nonverbal communication and can consider multiple perspectives. You may be good at communicating and find yourself in a profession such as a teacher, social worker, or salesman which requires a great deal of meaningful interaction with people.
Suggestion: Bake or cook something to share with friends, family, or coworkers. Write a physical letter to someone you love, haven't talked to in a while, or feel like you should reach out to. Make a set of encouragement cards like this....or this. Tip: look up words of encouragement. Once you've found a quote you like or have thought of one yourself, head over to Canva and play around with some of the free pre-made graphics they have.
Linguistic: You are sensitive to the meaning, sound, and rhythms of words. You understand and appreciate the functions of language. Words aren't just words to you, they mean something to you. You may have a love of reading and an appreciation for spoken word.
Suggestions: Write a short story or a poem, make a mind map and decorate it, or create a crossword using a platform like this one here.
Logical-mathematical: You have the capacity to discern logical relations among actions or symbols. You can follow long chains of reasoning. You can think about things in the abstract and have inductive and deductive thinking patterns. You may find yourself drawn to solving problems, strategy games, and experiments.
Suggestions: Try creating your own strategy game, make a scavenger hunt for friends, family, or a significant other, design or draw a picture featuring a pattern like this. (Tip: search for "tangle patterns" on Pinterest and you'll get a whole bunch of really cool ideas to try.)
Naturalist: You have the ability to discriminate among living things. You are sensitive to the features of the natural world. You may find that spending too much time indoors can be draining. You may have a keen eye for detail and can discern when something is out of place.
Suggestions: Try your hand at photography. Press flowers and leaves and use them as table decoration at your next gathering. Try creating your own stationary using techniques like this, this, or this. Plant a garden in your yard or start small with an herb garden inside if you're short on space.
Musical: You have the ability to produce and appreciate rhythm, pitch, and timbre. You may have the ability to sing, play musical instruments, or compose music. You have an appreciation for forms of musical expressiveness. You sense the connection between music and emotions. You may recognize, create, reproduce, or reflect on music naturally.
Suggestions: Try painting a song (as described above). Disconnect from everything and spend twenty to forty minutes singing or playing around with an instrument. Who knows, maybe you'll create a song. Or try putting your favorite quote to a ditty.
Spacial: You have an active imagination and may also have graphic and artistic skills. You may excel at spacial reasoning and have the ability to think in three dimensions. You have the ability to perceive the visual-spacial world accurately and may be able to recreate what you see in another medium.
Suggestions: Since this is what we might consider "traditional" creativity, I'm going to assume that you already consider yourself creative. Try creating something in a medium you've never tried or are not skilled at. Illustrate your most vivid dream. If you want to start small, try origami or practice mastering shapes by making your own tangle pattern design.
I'd love to see what you all come up with and if you have any additional suggestions or ideas, I would LOVE to hear them!
Wishing you creativity,