In preschool and Kindergarten, and perhaps even before that, our mentors encouraged us to use our hands to make things. Paper boats, paper airplanes, the fortune teller devices made out of paper. We used to make elaborate bracelets with our rainbow looms and start side hustles with the items made from colorful, patterned duct tape. Kids learned about chemical reactions by making slime with products that they stole from their parents. We read stories, and our teachers encouraged us to write our own.
But what happened? What happened to the colorful way of life and crafting and creativity?
According to the article, “We’re All Getting Less Creative, and Scientists Think They Know Why,” humans have become busier. “In short, we’re too busy and entertained for creativity to blossom,” Jessica Stillman, the author of the article, wrote. “Gone are the days where childhood was largely spent in unsupervised rambles and imaginary play. And we’re generally just as overscheduled and overstimulated as adults.” There is also a lack of boredom in our busy lives, yet boredom breeds creativity. This makes sense as to why we receive amazing and amusing ideas when we go for a walk or take a shower. (Those were two examples that the article suggested.) Because of constant access to technology and the internet, people have less time to be bored, and thus, less time to embrace creativity.
Another reason people seem less creative today is because people wish to stay in their comfort zones. Creativity can be vulnerable: an art gallery, a piece of literature, a theatre performance or a piece of music for all to see, watch and listen.
Being a college student with a busy schedule, it can be hard to stay creative. Even if your major is involved in the arts, the class work may not feel like creativity to you. College students can make themselves busy, almost to the point of burnout. According to blogger Chris Zaire in his article “How to Stay Creative When You’re Tired, Burnt Out and Have No Ideas Left,” he states that some reasons one may lack creativity are: “too much work and not enough rest, stress from personal or professional life, a creative block that you can’t seem to breakthrough and lack of motivation.”
“I love curating Spotify playlists to create a very specific mood,” Rose Hoogers said. “I have one for everything.” Hoogers and her friends “do puzzles and then we mod podge them.” There are also chalk murals in her apartment.
“Sometimes my friends and I will have spontaneous painting parties when we need a break,” senior Bailey Brown said. “My friend Denny has a bunch of painting supplies, so on a random Sunday afternoon we set up in one of the study rooms in Steg and painted away while chatting and listening to music.”
There are many options available for NW students to embrace creativity, such as creative clubs Crafternoon, and arts and humanities classes that focus on art, theatre and music.