I have a confession to make: I am a writer. That may appear self-evident as you read this blog but it is a hard-won truth that I have not always been willing to acknowledge. You see, especially in this day and age of contraction in publishing and other creative fields people often look askance at people who are willing to admit they are such peculiar beings, or artists of any stripe, for that matter.
But a writer I am, and proud of it. I used to take for granted being able to string words together well until I realized that it is actually a gift that not everyone is given. Of course, that is the very nature of gifts: we are graced to do something different from others. Our gifts may seem like they come to us naturally but they are actually given to us supernaturally by our Creator to bless the rest of creation.
As you all may have noticed I like to share inspirational quotations and here are some of my favorites dealing with authenticity and creativity. It was C.S. Lewis who said, “Be who you are because you never know who would love the person you try to hide.” Henry Beston wrote, “If you can write and do not, something within you withers and dies, and with its death poisons the soul.” And Mary Oliver stated, “The most regretful people on earth are those who felt the call to creative work and gave to it neither power nor time.”
So, what does all this have to do with the practice of minimalism and living more simply, you may ask? Well, much of the motivation for Linda and I to embark on our own minimalist journey was designing our lifestyle to enable more creative pursuits. For example, now that I do not have a house to maintain I have much more time to write. In a nutshell, I was able to put down my paintbrush and pick up my pen.
And allow me to encourage each of you to make time for whatever it is that makes your heart sing. Whether it is writing, photography, drawing, or some other activity, “it is never too late to be who you might have been,” as George Eliot suggested. And it does not necessarily matter if your gift is the source of your livelihood as much as an outlet for you to exercise your creativity and express yourself to others. So, go ahead and sing in the shower, and dance like no one is watching (but draw the shades:)