The Human ExperienceFor all the potential of the human body, I've got some serious beef with the social norms that keep our movements / actions / thoughts linear and predictable. I know social conformity is necessary for learning and guides behavior in situations where we don’t know what to do. I'm very aware that without some social pressure to conform, everyone would be free to instantly gratify every desire that arises (the time and place for this is called college and there’s a reason it only lasts 4-7 years). Eventually, years of conditioning wins and we grow up to become fully functioning members of society. "Frank the Tank”, or whoever your drunk alter ego was, retreats into your psyche and everyone is thankful that you no longer have 26 beers and go streaking through the neighborhood every Saturday night. You were pretty awesome, tho.
But on the other hand, the resulting homogenization can be so.painfully. boring. (Bed, Bath, & Beyond, anyone?)
It sucks that our modern "coming of age" often becomes synonymous with the death of our childhood. After all, what makes the human experience so unique? I would argue that it’s those qualities that we express so well as children. We're born to be connected, curious, free-thinking organisms capable of enormous creative output. Yet, in our conformity (or what we just call "growing up") there's a high risk of losing touch with these innate qualities; thus compromising a basic level of our humanity.
You need only spend 10 minutes at a playground and 10 minutes at a local gym to see this juxtaposition in energy, creativity, and mindfulness.
Aging is inevitable, but you have choice in how you'll do so. Will you only color inside the established lines or will you use your experiences in conformity to rewrite the rules and create something that fully defines you?
How are we not asking this question all the time?! We love to romanticize the ideals of creation, expression, and living with passion. Social media loves to broadcast this stuff at viral rates. Everyday you can find some article, video, or meme posted with a caption that reads something like “a good reminder...". The novelty calls to us - we watch, we consider, we hit the “like” button, and we keep on scrolling. If life is a blank canvas upon which we can create whatever we wish, why isn’t that a major part of the discussion? This isn’t a message we’re just needing reminding of, it needs to be woven into the fabric of our lives.
Look around for a moment, we are surrounded by creation. Everyday someone’s creation is staring us in the face whether we recognize it or not. Someone’s passion overwhelmed the security provided by conformity and the product was some awesome shit. Our world is advanced through creation. The Macbook I type these words on, the music playing while I do so, the platform that streams the music, the headphones that clarify it, the Stone Creek coffee that stimulates me. Just a few of the creations that broke form to expand beyond the norm…and are inspiring me to do the same.
Perhaps the true beauty of creation lies in it’s ability to inspire others to create. And the positive upward spiral continues...
Do we think that these creators are so different from ourselves? Make no mistake about it, you are capable of creating a beautiful fucking masterpiece. Maybe it’s writing a book, maybe it’s composing a piece of art, maybe it’s being a positive inspirational force in your family or community.
It doesn’t matter what.
What matters is that within you resides an ocean of creative potential waiting to be expressed. This creativity knows no limit and needs not be compartmentalized. When you live life through your creative lens there’s no such thing as mundane.