Why "use it or lose it" is a myth

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Do you ever worry that someday, your creativity will… run out? That you’ll wake up one quiet Tuesday, and learn that are no more stories, films, beautiful and smart solutions, or contemplations left in you? Or maybe you’re convinced this has already happened.

Welcome to the party of being a creative! Can I get you something to drink?

These are some ideas about creativity that are loaded metaphors and myths, but seem particularly sticky for our psyches:

“Use it or lose it.”

Writer’s block

“I’m stuck.”

“Conditions have to be “just right” or nothing will happen/come out.”

“The creative process is painful.”

I paraphrase the brilliant Sir Ken Robinson in his awesome TED Talk “Do schools kill creativity?”,

“Point at the moon to a dog, and the dog will look at your finger. Point at the moon to a baby, the baby will look at the moon.”

That’s because humans are the only species on planet Earth that possess imagination.

Creativity is a human drive—nothing and no one can take it away from you. It’s always there, waiting to outflow.

Sure, if you haven’t prioritized being creative in a while, it can take some time and effort to get into that juicy flow state. But creativity isn’t like a tank of gas that runs out.

If you’re worried about this, chances are your soul has been a-knocking for some time—asking you to make a specific thing, or just… anything!—and maybe you haven’t honored it yet.

The minute you take action and sit down to tap into your creative energy, this fear will start to dissolve.

▶️ What are you seeing now about your situation, and what might be a small, satisfying step forward for you?