If You’re Human, You’re Creative


We’re all familiar with the distinction: some of us are creative and some of us are not. It’s a left brain/right brain world and each of us is pretty sure in which camp we belong. But when, in your own life, did this idea take hold? Pretty sure it wasn’t when you were a kid. As a kid, we all thought we were creative, right? Or, more accurately, we never really thought about it. We just were. (And by the looks of any refrigerator or kitchen bulletin board in most families with children, parents share this view.) Kids are – and, more importantly, feel – “naturally creative.” We didn’t start questioning our own creative abilities until we started to ‘mature.’

Here’s a suggestion: let’s all go back to before the time when we divided the world, and ourselves, by left and right brain types and think about how we can all tap into the creativity that’s inherent in the human condition. Because creativity and human-ness are one and the same.

Ask yourself this: what are the most salient qualities of childhood? Authenticity. Vulnerability. Ruthless honesty. Open expressiveness. Confidence. Comfort with a unique point of view. These are the raw, natural qualities of humans before they are socialized. (i.e. children). Does this list of qualities sound familiar? Right. They are the same qualities we associate with adult creativity. Which means basic humanness = creativity. Which means that to be human is to be creative. Are you human? Then you’re creative. The implications of this statement might threaten some of those in my own field who make a living trading on the creative insecurity of clients. (You can’t trust your own creative instincts + we are artists + trust us = sign here.)

What would happen if we all felt we were creative? Not all of us would become artists, actors, writers or filmmakers. Those of us who pursue those endeavors are pursuing a passion and gift. Here’s what would happen: the world would become more creatively aligned and driven. We would all be more human.

My clients are not as experienced in the craft that I practice. They have not spent their lives developing the creative tools needed to express the raw creative impulse. They would not want to do my job and I would not want to do theirs. But I never for a moment discount their ability to see and hear the world in a creative (read: human) way. In fact, it’s my job to inspire and provoke their creative thinking. Doing so has enriched our work immeasurably. Because ideas don’t care where they come from.

To be clear: this is not a plea to become more creative. This is a plea to all of us to tap into the creativity that comes standard as part of the human package.

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