Permissions

We are born into a life of permissions. We learn from an early age that we need permission to live at home, school, college, and at work.

There are rules, social norms, and ways of doing things, and to get anywhere in this world, and succeed, we need to follow the established path.


We have morsels of goodness sprinkled on us as we grow up, some people get the sauce, but most of us just get morsels of inspiration to be creative, to identify our creative voice.

How do we reconcile a life of permissions with a life of creativity?

At Home

Don’t run.

Don’t get glue everywhere.

Color on the paper I give you.

Don’t spill your crayons.

We paint when it’s time.

We don’t paint at all.

We can’t do play-doh because it will get everywhere.

Can’t, don’t, and won’t.

We want you to draw, a little, paint, a little, but don’t make a mess.

Here is a color book, and some crayons, now create.

Really?

If you have a budding Picasso, Mozart, or Einstein, when and where will they get a chance to figure that out?

At School

By necessity schools have rules. Schools are mass factories of learning. Unless your child is at a private school there is only so much public schools can do to create an environment of creativity.

They have tests to cater to, federal and state mandates. Great teachers, with great souls, will do what they can, but today’s school will struggle to help our children dream, and discover their hidden art.

Don’t run.

Walk.

We create in art class at a set time, with set rules.

Let’s get you ready for the next test.

Next period, lunch, more tests, time to go home.

What college are you going to get into? Okay, counseling time is over.

You aren’t cut out for the big college. You should go to junior college. That’s what your grades tell me.

Your grades tell me what type of person and life you will have.

College

If we do go to college we are introduced to a new world. The books we read introduce us to topics, cultures, cities and governments that we have never been exposed to before.

Professors are well educated, have often traveled extensively, have world and life experience, and can introduce us to new ideas, theories, and theology.

Yet, we have exams, papers to write; we have grades we need to earn to get nice looking transcripts. There is networking that needs done so that we can make connections to a future employer. The looming pressure of student loan debt squashes most hope for a lucrative career for many years.

We are often young, and exploring our new found freedom. For some it’s a time to explore their social freedoms, and for a few it’s a time to explore their creative freedom.

The grit of the two worlds is still there. Rules, exams, and grades versus creative freedom.

How do we reconcile the two worlds?

At Work

There are companies that provide complete creative freedom, but for the majority of working American’s we have found ourselves in a world much like the one we lived in growing up.

Don’t run.

Report on time.

Leave on time.

Don’t say this.

Don’t say that.

Here are the steps to succeed here.

Here is the extent you can dream, create, and be who you are.

Our culture dictates your life here.

Here is how to earn a paycheck.

The responsibility and weight of bills and family dictate that we follow these rules. The bills need paid, and we need to eat. The American dream is looming over us, and we need to realize it, though we don’t know why.

We have started our own family, and now we are dictating the rules to someone else.

We never got out of the cycle, or at least most of us haven’t, and so we perpetuate a new cycle of rules versus morsels of inspiration.

We are tired, dissatisfied with life, looking for something new, trying to find it in a career transition, new houses and fancy cars. We can’t find what we are looking for there.

Maybe what we need has been hidden. It was never watered, and allowed to grow. It was run into the ground with rules. It was told it needed permission.

You are a creative being. You were from birth. Perhaps your environment didn’t give your creativity the air it needed to grow and thrive. Perhaps it was extinguished by rules.

It’s hidden. It needs to come out so that you can be who you were made to be. You don’t need permission.

It’s ok. What is it that you want to do? It’s time to do it.

Our careers do not have to define us.

Make time to discover your hidden art, your hidden voice, your hidden creativity. Shift your life so that you can begin to explore your creativity, and put a plan in action so that you can incorporate it into your life.

It’s time to splash some paint, spill the crayons, and run down the hallways!

It just may be the answer you are looking for.

Dream big, create, and run hard,

Marcy Pedersen