A place to awaken the senses and be curious about nature's ways.

A place to awaken the senses and be curious about nature's ways.

Creative force is the necessary energy to begin a new experience. … Creative momentum leads you to the kind of experience that leads to knowledge. That is what the whole story of life is about. … Nuances are the creative opportunities to get into the experience.  Gregge Tiffen (Open Secrets: An Air of Optimism – May, 2011)

What do ‘creative force’ ‘momentum’ ‘nuances’ have to do with the activities of maintaining life? You know the ‘darn dailies’ required to sustain our existence on the planet?

I’m discovering more and more that there is opportunity for living life as a creative endeavor.  I don’t need to set aside a block of time and have all the necessary supplies to “be creative”. Opportunities abound to invoke the creative force in most everything I do. Curiosity and awareness are the keys. I can choose to become aware of what I don’t know and curious to find out. That’s the root of creative force.

So, each of us – you, me, everyone – has the capacity to be creative.  Being creative isn’t dependent on having the skill to make music or art. Those are clear creative acts, but so can be most any action in life – when you make the choice to BE and to tap into discovering what you don’t know about whatever activity you’re engaged in. That awareness and curiosity hold the potential to bring light, joy and wonder to most any task. And, that’s truly living.

We each have routine tasks that we do daily. We rise, we brush, we dress, we eat, we walk the dog, we work … and the list goes on. We can do these tasks with awareness or not. We can view them as burdens or not. We can look for the creative opportunities right there, subtle though they may be, or not.  And, those choices that we make moment to moment determine the quality of that moment, the next one, and extend beyond to the overall quality of our lives. Yep, those little choices add up to a really big deal – you.

Most days Luke and I walk the same route each morning. When I’m aware that I don’t know what will be different today, I can choose to engage my curiosity to find out. Our walk becomes a creative endeavor of discovery, not a boring ‘chore’ that must be done.  My awareness is in the senses: eyeing Luke as he sniffs his way from place to place; noticing how the light is filtering through the trees; feeling the warmth of the sun on my skin; hearing water make its way over rocks and around bends; and, just this morning noticing the fresh pine scent that permeated the air along our route (I thought of how fresh cut boughs brought indoors invoke the winter holiday spirit). Each day is different, and from these observations I learn little bits of nature’s ways.

I don’t limit this awareness and curiosity to walks in nature. Now that the ‘busy’ season has arrived at the Dragonfly House, I’m engaging in the daily maintenance requirements in much the same way. I observe guests – what they eat, what they use, what they are interested in – from curiosity. I wonder what I can learn about how to make their time here more enjoyable and how I can be more efficient. I engage in cleaning, making beds, preparing each room and the like with curiosity as well. Yes, I know how to do these tasks, but I don’t know what new look and feel I might create or how I might be more efficient. That wonder invokes the creative force giving each routine task its own sense of being new.

So often we look at the tasks of life as chores that we must ‘get through’ so we can get on with our ‘real’ work or some fun, creative project. Yet, when we take a moment to inquire, just below the surface we find creative opportunity abounds, creating momentum for lightening the load of what we once considered the heavy, boring burdens of life.

Aware, curious ... I'd say this is what creative engagement looks like!

Aware, curious ... I'd say this is what creative engagement looks like!

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