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14 April 2024

Creativity and Order

by Emmanuel Bakare

Wandering on a Thursday evening and a thought crossed my mind about how we define creativity:

The controversy this discussion led me to write about is disambiguated in a “creative” and “order” dichotomy I cover in later rambles – all of this being subjective to my perspective nonetheless.

Being creative as I would define it means exuding some outlier form of expression or process towards problems, doing that which no one would reasonably think of at first. Over time, we come to see these outcomes presented by such folks as spontaneous and driven by some inquisitive curiosity, one we consider difficult to replicate. Maybe the “age” factor comes to play like our once young self excited to play in the rain or these folks propensity for expression is unsurprisingly abounding in waves that ebb and rise.

I am of the belief creatives are folks that never lose their “child-like” freedom, they express both in character and form, a nuanced erratic pattern that we once knew - they are grown children in adult bodies like peter pan.

My next question wandered what then becomes of the outside folks, those who did grow up. I think we all become adults by sacrificing some of that child like creativity for order and structure. As we were growing up, we all have in some form been described as creative but not so much now. Maybe you had this once in academics or some other form, does intelligence come to play a factor? All these are unanswered questions.

As earlier noted, I believe the creativity we have in adulthood comes from our child like self who discovered talents early and kept those “creative personalities” growing up, they are still as joyous and flow in the regard their creativity spurs. The more creative they are, the more child like they appear to be in expression. This should not be confused with the “mature” manner of expression, the creatives just showcase a version of its form that orderly folks reminisce.

We all as adults grow up to attain some order in our lives, sacrificing our childish habits for more designated ones of our age. We push back on the spontaneity we once had, combing it down with jests and assertions of authority over those who have yet to grow up. It is only fair, order must be had and the patience we have is far limited with all the new perspectives that adulthood brings.

Order as I see it is a more adult driven concept, born of structure and conciseness leaving little room for unneeded excitement where it need not be designated. We learn to behave in one way but respond to criticism in another, we conflate our expressions into a universally calm form leaning towards group think to identify our patterns for life. We bend to a form of structure and adapt our own “drawn out plans” for lessons learnt and strictly adapting to a schedule.

As kids in contrast, we just lived our days wondering what the next day brought and how to live to the fullest. Free of these plans, we became our most creative selves. As adults, we explore our characters to find what we once had, little us.

My ramble here is that the folks we meet in our daily lives and regard as highly creative might share the disdain from adulthood looming on their shoulder, that gift of creativity now bordering on being a burden. Creativity and its creatives are young persons living in a world that wants them to grow up, to become adults, to become more orderly.

As we adapt to life, maybe we come to a compromise adapting to equal ends of both spectrum. An older version of Peter Pan yet to be shown to the world. But when you do, do it with all the vigour in the world and never lose that child like glow. Keep the flame alive for the next creative you shall become.

tags: musing - growing up - adulthood - calmness - rambling - life