I’ve spent the last week going to work earlier than usual and heading out in the afternoon to landscape my yard, back breaking and borderline tedious work that made me… happy. There’s something about a creative project that engages you, it captivates your imagination while you are working, it drives you to keep working when your body says its tired and it provides something approaching bliss when it comes together.
One of the things we’ve done here at Middle Aged Crazy is re-define who we call creative people, we’ve broadened the discussion beyond traditional fine artists. By defining creativity as “applied imagination” all of us can release our Creative Beasts whether we are knitting baby blankets or creating a garden. The act of creation is a statement of self expression and when we create we put a little bit of our soul in everything we make.
So many of us have jobs moving paper or doing some other tasks that leave us wondering if our life has meaning beyond our paycheck and our Visa bill. Being able to create something puts us back in touch with our soul, it’s a way to find grace. On Sunday, after 6 days of yard work, I put in some railroad ties along a berm I’d built and everything clicked. The vision I’d had last week was now real, my thoughts had become something, I had created. I felt a feeling that can only be described as bliss, the hard work had a payoff.
In the last week I have moved 10 yards of soil and 8 yards of mulch one shovel at a time. I’ve installed three magnolia trees and about 50 plants and their railroad tie borders. Today, the final two palettes of sod will be delivered and I can’t wait to get out there and get to work, hoping I have enough daylight to finish. There is no deadline, no hurry to get the work done, I simply love the combination of physical and mental exercise I get from working my butt off. The payoff will come immediately as the yard is completed one piece of sod at a time and forever, each time I walk through the yard I will feel a sense of pride (and a need to pull weeds).
I hope you can find something that makes you feel fulfilled and engaged. Life gets so much more interesting when you do.
Go make something!