Friday, November 27, 2015

Is Clutter Killing Your Creativity?



I've had a bit of a challenging month attempting to unclutter my mind, by ridding my house of things I've been hanging on to. At least I'm getting it organized to place it curb side for garbage pick-up or released into the ether where it belongs. I truly believe this kind of clutter can block or even kill creativity. During this process I have learned that the relationship between creativity and clutter. When clutter increases, creativity decreases, and it's inverse in nature.

I distinctly remember during my art school study, where we were sharing spaces with a fellow students, a cubicle, measuring, oh I'd say about 12'x12', if that. I made an effort to keep our small studio space clean and organized, as did the fellow students I shared the spaces with. It was difficult to work, if not almost impossible. I created much of my work at home.

Students who made a huge mess in their space would inevitably drag their mess out into center of the large room, where you'd accidentally kick something half way across the floor. I think the restricted space  in our cubicles was good for some of us. But for others it wouldn't matter how much space they had, it would be a mess regardless.

Mess is stress, and a big distraction the takes away from my focus and concentration.
Yes there are some artists that work this way and they flourish in their creative and chaotic messiness, but I'm not one of them, because I know it doesn't make me feel good. We all have to decide for ourselves what makes us feel good in our creative environment, and what enables our creativity.

Often I have found I could always measure the psychological state of my well being because it is reflected in the space around me. If I was not in a positive frame of mind because I was exhausted, my house would look like it had blown up. Not a good feeling.

I believe when we hang onto people, places or things, it's based on the hope that one day we'll need it, we don't want to let go, or we are creating some kind of drama in our lives. Instead of being motivated, we can end up with feelings of guilt and shame because we can't move forward unburdened and we can't let go.

I can only speak for what works and what doesn't work for me. Some think that creative people are messy and this is conducive to the creative process and all part of being creative. It worked for Einstein. This has not been my own experience as an artist. Clutter does block, and can threaten to kill my creativity.

I'm looking forward to feeling more unfettered and creative.

2 comments:

thesycamoretree said...

I can be messy when I'm in the middle of creating something, but I have to bookend the process with an organized place to begin with followed by a cleanup afterward! :)

Catherine Meyers said...

That sounds good to me Bev, and a nice balance.Thanks for your comment. <3