I wish I were creative

I read a story recently of an artist who worked for Hallmark Cards. He traveled to many schools as a guest speaker to talk about his work. He would introduce himself as an artist and then ask the students, “How many of you are artists?”

In Kindergarten and first grade almost every hand went up immediately. In the second grade classroom, about three-quarters of the class would typically raise their hands. When he asked the third grade only a few would respond.

By the time he asked the question “are you an artist” to the sixth grade, no one would identify themselves as an artist. They did not consider themselves to be creative.

We have relegated the term “creative” to the gifted ones who sculpt clay, paint on a canvas or write words that move us, but we have lost sight of the true essence of creativity.

Here it is…if you solve problems, design things, develop systems, write, think, strategize, innovate or add value in any way that didn’t exist before, then YOU ARE CREATIVE.

Two key principles to remember is this:

  1. You are creative – You are created in the image of the creator Himself.
  2. You can learn how to generate great ideas at a moments notice.

I love this quote from Todd Henry’s book Accidental Creative. “Anyone can improve his ability to generate good ideas consistently if willing to be a little more purposeful in how to approach the creative process.”

We are all creative. We just need to learn how to dig up those incredible ideas that are buried deep inside, and believe me, they are there.

We’ll take a look at a few more thoughts on creativity in the days to come.


  1. Thanks for sharing this. I just finished the book, Orbiting the Giant Hairball, in which the author (the former Hallmark employee) opens with that story. He concludes the book by talking about how each person has a unique masterpiece inside of them, which we need to bring forth through our lifetime. It reminded me of a great quote that is attributed to Abraham Lincoln: “Every man is born an original, but sadly, most men die copies.”

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