The Creative Itch

Article source:  T  he School Of Life

Article source: The School Of Life

For many of us, our strongest and at the same time vaguest desire is to be more creative. And when we think about what it would mean to be creative, we arrive at a dauntingly fixed range of jobs.

We might be visually creative: and so identify that we want to be a painter, photographer, film-maker, designer or architect.

We might be intellectually creative: and so want to be a novelist, journalist or academic.

We might be musically creative: and so want to start a band.

Or we might be sensorily creative: and so want to start a restaurant.

 

The problem is that securing any of these jobs is – statistically speaking – almost impossible. We end up blocked, sure of what we want to be, yet also unable to break into our chosen field.

We end up with what we call a fixation – rather than simply an interest – to signal the mixture of inner certainty and outer impossibility.

The solution to such fixations lies in coming to understand more closely what we are really creatively interested in, because the more accurately and precisely we fathom what we truly care about, the more we stand to discover that our creative interests and their associated pleasure-points actually exist in a far broader range of occupations than we have until now been used to entertaining.

 

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It is a certain lack of understanding of what we are really after – and therefore a relatively standard and obvious reading of the job market – that pushes us into a far narrower tunnel of options than is warranted.

When we properly grasp what draws us to one creative job, we stand to identify qualities that are available in other kinds of employment as well. What we really love isn’t this specific job, but a range of themes we have first located there, normally because this job was the most conspicuous example of a repository of them – which is where the problem started because over-conspicuous jobs tend to attract too much attention, get over-subscribed and are then in a position to offer only very modest salaries. 

Yet in reality, the qualities can’t only exist there. They are necessarily generic and will be available under other, less obvious guise – once we know how to look. 

Imagine the person who has become heavily invested in the idea of becoming a journalist. The very word ‘journalist’ has become a coveted badge that captures everything they feel they want. From a young age, the job suggested glamour and stimulation, excitement and dynamism. They got used to parents and uncles and aunts referring to them as future journalists. However, the sector now happens to be in terminal decline and pitiably over-subscribed. A block and angst results.

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It is a certain lack of understanding of what we are really after – and therefore a relatively standard and obvious reading of the job market – that pushes us into a far narrower tunnel of options than is warranted.

When we properly grasp what draws us to one creative job, we stand to identify qualities that are available in other kinds of employment as well. What we really love isn’t this specific job, but a range of themes we have first located there, normally because this job was the most conspicuous example of a repository of them – which is where the problem started because over-conspicuous jobs tend to attract too much attention, get over-subscribed and are then in a position to offer only very modest salaries. 

Yet in reality, the qualities can’t only exist there. They are necessarily generic and will be available under other, less obvious guise – once we know how to look. 

Imagine the person who has become heavily invested in the idea of becoming a journalist. The very word ‘journalist’ has become a coveted badge that captures everything they feel they want. From a young age, the job suggested glamour and stimulation, excitement and dynamism. They got used to parents and uncles and aunts referring to them as future journalists. However, the sector now happens to be in terminal decline and pitiably over-subscribed. A block and angst results.