Creativity is the cure

I have been on/off sick for the past week, I believe it’s a sinus infection, blood comes out incessantly as I blow my nose. Irritation fills the nostrils and remains stagnant. There’s not enough time to meditate , jet lag , and back to work stressors. The solution should be to take it easy . Stay home and rest at all cost. But in being so wound up and feeling horrible , the solution lied in maintaining my Wednesday discipline…flamenco!

A two hour additional commute was added to my normal two hour work commute. 4 hours of transportation mid week will not stop you from engaging in something you remain passionate about. I could have taken a sick day today, but today flamenco was necessary. If I could only block out all other British commuters around me, I could stay zoned in and centered . This could work. And it did .

There is nothing like stomping your feet on the ground to a collective rhythm of a group. We were serving as our own percussion group, our own drum circle . New routine , new teacher, new students today. Minimal music played . All didn’t matter. What mattered was the soothing movements of the Andalucian dance. We were creating sound from our bodies and beauty in the flowing of our arms and fingers , alluring an imaginative audience to follow every movement.

The answer to much of life is in the act of creating. It’s the answer to …getting steam out of your system (perhaps even sickness), cathartic process of letting go of relationships, uncovering a hidden part of oneself, and sometimes it’s as if the divine flows through us.

Because I feel so drawn to creativity , I am curious about getting into the minds of artists of all backgrounds. I enjoy listening to podcasts that dissect artists, writers, and other creators creative process. They transform pain, ecstasy, and memories through art form. Sometimes it comes easily as if divine intervention entered their brain and into their hands or voice. Other times the process can be a struggle, as it may never reach the perfection they dreamed up.

I recently listened to the World Cafe podcast, in which Glen Hansard was interviewed. I was in awe and it seems the interviewer Talia Schlanger felt the same. Glen was a mesmerizing storyteller, and I couldn’t help but listen to the podcast several times. This Irish musician is most known for his performance in the acclaimed film Once. As his music was stripped down of the layers of production, I could hear the pure rawness of his voice and authentic nature. Isn’t this why we all like unplugged sessions with musicians? Off are the coats of armor we shield ourselves with in everyday life of defenses and superficial chatter, we are witnessing a peak into their true selves.

It’s not a surprise we fall in love with musicians: they are poets, musical geniuses, performers, and offering their exposed souls to the world. We long for this, as we may wish that we could only be so authentic. When someone is showing their vulnerability, their is unity in the pain. As Brene Brown says, ““Courage starts with showing up and letting ourselves be seen.”

In the interview, Glen tells various stories through songs about hardships we all may face, including heartbreaks, courageous adventures, death of loved ones, and reflections of our imperfect parents. He ends the interview by saying the following quote:

“It doesn’t get easier, life doesn’t get easier. Life’s tough. You have to get up in the morning, put on your clothes, put water on your face, and face your day. It’s everyday, it’s everybody. There’s not one person on this planet that gets away with that. You have to give your life meaning. We’re all struggling, and you have to give the struggle some meaning. So in some way your songs are just an offering of admittance of the moral ambiguity of the world.”

Struggling and suffering are universal, but how can we embrace this along with our joys? Create and transform pain, sickness, anger, joy, and sentimentality to art. Celebrate and share the human experience.

For glimpses onto the podcast I was discussing see below, and also is a quick sample of some of Glen Hansard.

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