It’s Thursday and I’m Crafting my Life! May’s theme is recognizing our innate awesomeness. Because we are awesome. Last week I wrote about how moms are awesome, and this week I’m talking about how making stuff is awesome. Read on, because I promise it will be, um, awesome.
When I need grounding, I make something with my hands. It’s my way of re-focusing my mind, and reminding myself that I can accomplish something. When I’ve knitted, sewed or baked something, I’ve created something tangible that I can hold as a memento of my awesomeness. Plus, the act of creating things in this way also helps me to still my mind and stay present in the moment. It takes me out of my head and into the physical world around me.
Close-up of a skirt I made myself
The act of creating something is powerful. It’s like your statement to the universe that you are alive and you are contributing. I like making actual physical things, but that’s certainly not the only way to create. Writing can be a creative act. So can re-organizing, gardening, helping another person or even making a spreadsheet. There is power in completing tasks mindfully and with purpose, investing your whole self. It is your art, and your gift to the world. It’s the record of your life, of your impact on the world around you.
I know that not everyone is crafty. I find knitting relaxing, but I know some people find it stressful what with all the yarn and the needles and the patterns that make no sense. If knitting raises your blood pressure, then there’s no need for you to do it. But I bet that there’s something that you love to do, something that makes your heart sing and reminds you of how awesome you are. It doesn’t have to be something profound, or high-profile. It can be as simple as making a great meal for your family, or writing a fabulous thank-you note. But when you find that thing, your thing, you know it.
Dandelion blossom fritters that I made
To be perfectly honest, I sometimes have a hard time motivating myself to make stuff. Creating can feel like just one more task on my never-ending to-do list. “Clean the kitchen, sort the kid’s clothes, buy eggs, sew a baby gift.” In that context, the last thing I want to do is sew. But then I watch my 5-year-old daughter, and feel humbled. She can barely put down her crayons and paper long enough to eat. She draws picture after picture after picture, taking great pleasure in both the process and the product. She creates things with joy, and as a matter of course. And she has no doubt about how awesome she is, or how awesome her pictures are.
Watching my children fills me with inspiration. I hope that they never stop making space to create in their life. And I hope that they never stop taking pleasure in what they’ve created. In my eyes, they are awesome, and I want them to know it. So why do I not afford myself the same respect? Why can’t I make the time to do the things I love, and that make me feel good about myself? I have no good answer, and so I make myself take the time to create. Once I get started, I can’t stop. My momentum gets rolling, and I make stuff, and it is awesome. I just need to make creating – make myself, really – a priority.
Stripey mittens that I knitted
Not every project that I make goes to plan. Sometimes there are bad words and tears. Sometimes I stab myself with pins or have to pull out 2 whole rows of knitting. That’s life. Just like anything else, creating isn’t going to be perfect all of the time. But that’s the leap of faith we take. We don’t have to be perfect, we just have to try. And in the process, we learn and contribute. We improve and we grow. And maybe, if we’re lucky, we discover our awesomeness in the process. Because we are awesome.
What about you? What do you create that makes you feel awesome? Please share!
May’s Crafting my Life series is about recognizing our innate awesomeness. On the last Thursday of the month, which just happens to be the 27th, I will include a link up. To participate, write a post on this month’s theme anytime in May, or track down a post you’ve written on the subject sometime in the past, and add yourself to the list. Then read everyone else’s ideas and thoughts and be inspired! Check out the link-ups from January, February and March to get a feel for how it works.