Even though it’s a term that tends to be used quite loosely and cheaply (especially if you live in a place like Cape Town), I’d consider myself a creative.
The kind that, enjoys the act of creating new things (think, innovation and fresh!); enjoys putting their thoughts into motion and turning the intangible into something that they can feel; moves themselves towards their purpose of ‘being’ daily (Gina-Alyse).
In real life that means that I find it hard to force myself to create anything if I don’t feel inspired to create – in fact, I find it hard to force anything – be it authenticity, work, inspiration, etc.
But, let it be known that I am a force of nature once I have set my mind on doing something. Once I have set my mind on something, it consumes me. I will not rest until it is done. Don’t dare ask me to recreate that work. I can never do it again. I cannot recreate the feelings or the experience.
I am incredibly protective over my work. I sleep, eat, sing, dance, shout at weird times. I come alive for the first time at 10pm and then for the second time at 12pm (the point of no return – read an interesting article about that here!), and all of this works quite well for me.
Except sometimes. Sometimes, like yesterday morning.
Yesterday morning was the type of morning that makes one want to set a whole page full of the good-unattainable kind of New Years resolutions, like, set one alarm instead of five with death threats attached to them.
I woke up around the same time I wake up every day. The same time that I wake up if I’ve worked through the night – which is most nights. I opened one eye. Threw my hand up to pull open the curtain behind my bed, and turned – groaning. My body was rebelling against me – full rebellion. Every muscle screamed, and it wasn’t because of an intense exercise session the day before, no, it was probably because of the lack of one for a while, the mountain of things that I had been worrying about, trying to sort out during the last week, all the work I was trying to put through on time, and just the lack of a much needed private worship session. If I had to be honest with myself, I’d say that much of my pain was because of a lack of discipline, or, good habits that allow my body to function properly within the time set for the specific action – muscle memory, you know?
I wasn’t always like this. There was a time when I was a control freak. I woke up like clockwork every day and did a whole lot of potentially OCD things that caused a few very real panic attacks – Jesus had to teach me to calm down and operate out of rest and peace. And, I did it. I learnt. I shed some of my ‘bad’ habits and adopted new ones, only to, in turn to find myself here: with a ton load of other ‘bad’ habits that I can’t blame on being creative, or find a reason for in research.
An unknown wise man said the following:
“Discipline is just choosing between what you want now and what you want most.”
Regretfully, a lot of creative people (and I’m sooooo guilty), blame their ill-discipline on what they’ve found that they are by nature, and sometimes, without even thinking about it, chose what they want now instead of what they want most. Don’t get me wrong, they’re still SO committed to the big dream and they visualise it all the time, but they detach the big thing from the small thing, unable to see that the small thing is what makes the big thing.
I feel like I can also relate my newly established theory to a lot of my generation. We neglect a ton of godly wisdom, like purity, because we can’t chose between what we want now and what we want most (maybe it’s because we don’t know what we want most, or, that view has been distorted?)
Whatever the case, I can never truly change or make a mark on culture if I don’t stay true to the first and most important discipline: spending time with Jesus – allowing him to fill me every day after being drained by an incredibly DRAINING world who consumes both art and opinion as fast as the people tasting Krispy Kreme for the first time in Johannesburg the other day.
The day goes so fast, and we forget – I know. And, then another day goes past and very soon it’s a week and you’re left wondering why you’re feeling so broken, in body and spirit as well. Well, my friend, it’s probably because of those heavy habits that you’ve chosen as your ‘want now’ and eventually your ‘want most.’
Today, I woke up and threw myself into Jesus. My most important habit, one that makes me light rather than heavy. I ran around the house screaming about how good He was, and I laughed with Him as well. The pain wasn’t gone immediately, but now I held joy – and how light joy is. Today, and every day, I choose Jesus as my ‘want most’.