Hamilton's director shared a painful experience almost every creator can relate to. As an artist, he explained, there’s this thing that you want to give, and there feels like there’s no place to put it, and you don’t feel useful. That’s a scary feeling. And it’s lonely. You feel stunted and confused. But the challenge is that we work in professions where we aren’t given enough chances to do what we do. Which means it's our responsibility to create our own opportunities and make space for ourselves. Because nobody will do it for us.
PERMISSION SLIP — Generating opportunities to express ourselves despite access, audience or affluence
Can't book paying gigs for your band around town? Go to the park on the weekend during high traffic times and play free concerts. Working a boring job where your conservative boss doesn't appreciate your comedic writing style? Produce scripts for parody commercials in your downtime and scratch that itch. Don't have an outlet for your ridiculous and vulgar ideas? Start a video series with your friends that nobody watches and be whatever absurd version of yourself you want. Point is, nobody is standing in the way of our ability to create value. It's all permission. If we have this gift to give and there's no place to put it, then the onus is on us to make space for it. Because our creative muscles only flex and strengthen to the degree that we proactively give them opportunities to do so.
Hyde's renowned book on treating creativity as a gift reminds us that what is given away feeds us again and again, while what is kept feeds only once and leaves us hungry. The gift must stay in motion. Giving the first creation away makes the second one possible, and bestowal creates that energy place into which new energy may flow.
If you're the kind of person for whom making things is the most natural way to engage with the world, connection is only a creation away. What if the primary obstacle to expanding your creative life was your own limited thinking?
Flex your creative muscles more frequently
Create opportunities to make space for your ideas
Increase your frequency of being seen in your element
Experience a satisfying artistic exchange regardless of economic circumstance