07 July 2013

Creativity Journal - Day 3 (Paper)

Make something out of paper, but don't use scissors or glue or draw on it. What now? (And no, you don't have to know origami to do this.)
I was a little perplexed how to go about today's challenge. I haven't mentioned it yet, but one of my rules is that creations are not to create clutter. I don't want to end up with a bunch of things I have no use for just so I can say I was creative.

I could think of lots of things to make from paper without using scissors or glue or drawing. But to make something that also related to words or fabric AND was useful or wanted? The brain cells had to work a little harder.

For my words project I have an embossed bookmark. The card was a strip left over from scrap booking, so technically, I didn't use scissors for this project. Although writing is a form of drawing, I have chosen to believe that by not using a traditional drawing implement, I have fulfilled the spirit of the challenge. (My creativity, my rules.)

The bookmark is for my happiness journal. Some time ago I watched Shawn Achor on TED talking about the 'happiness advantage'. His research, based on chemical analysis and brain functions, indicates that being happy leads to success, rather than the common perception that success leads to happiness.Something he mentioned made perfect sense to me. The goal posts of success are constantly moving. If we set success as graduating, once we achieve that, we set a new mark in the sand - get a job, then, get a promotion, then ... and on it goes.

At the end of his talk, Shawn talked about a 21day challenge. The challenge is quite simple - perform five simple tasks every day for 21 days to improve your happiness. The five simple tasks really help you focus on perception of reality; changing your view from negative to positive. Those five tasks are: exercise, meditate, let someone in your network know you value them (and why), record three things (different every day) that you're thankful for, and journal about one positive thing that happened during day. If you watch Shawn's video, he explains the rationale for each.

As I mentioned when I started this creativity project, I'm not real good at day-to-day routine. I started the 21-day challenge several times. I did end up completing 21 consecutive days. Since then my journaling has been a little sporadic (although not as sporadic as my exercising). I do think it's a good idea to 'count your blessings, name them one by one'. I think we too often see the negative and we are quite surprised 'by what the Lord has done' when we stop and think about it.

Moving on to my fabric challenge. Work with paper using a fabric theme. Hmmmm. Although it sounds contradictory, this set me less challenges than working with words. I put an old needle in the sewing machine, took a piece of scrap book paper, folded it, sewed it and hey, presto, a pocket for paper off-cuts from my current scrap booking endeavours.

Are you any good at origami? What's the best thing you've ever folded?

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