Sometimes, having a lot of ‘stuff’ can be more of a hindrance than a help. Perhaps we would all benefit were we to have less and do more.
My son is currently studying at drama school. He was recently preparing to return and sorting out what he wanted to take. Some time ago he’d acquired a crash mat to practise his gymnastics at home. In addition, I’d offered him my old electronic drum kit (he’s a man of many parts). Now, he wanted to have these with him at his new digs.
So, my wife arranged the hire of a small van and we were getting everything ready for the move. But then I had an epiphany. Our son had been telling us how tightly scheduled his course is. And how he has been visiting a local gymnastics centre, as well as using the school’s rehearsal rooms and drum kit. Which means there would be little need for him to have everything at his home.
Mother of Invention
How often do we say to ourselves ‘if only I had x, I could do y’? But how many times is that really true? Are we really just making excuses for not simply finding a way to get on with y in the first place? Maybe we can hire or borrow whatever it is we need. Perhaps we know someone who has the skills or resources we lack.
This can provide an opportunity to connect or collaborate. It also alleviates the need to acquire ‘stuff’. We may well discover we don’t really need it after all. Or can find a way to achieve our goals with what we already have available. After all, necessity is the mother of invention.
Many great creative works were produced when the artist had next to nothing at their disposal. The key thing was they had a vision. And saw that through to fruition, however limited their means.
For those of us concerned with education, clearly having sufficient resources is important. However, creative resourcefulness is something from which every pupil can benefit. As previously discussed, the creative process is largely one of whittling down our options. So, starting with limited means may actually be of benefit.
Dance in a Field
Creative expression is a function of imagination. We can very easily stifle that mechanism through over-reliance on equipment, technology or other paraphernalia. Plus, should we do away with all that, we remove the excuse that we can’t commence our experimentation until we have […insert excuse here].
Children engage their imaginations constantly. They are keen and willing to represent their ideas through whatever means are available to them. So, they won’t mind at all if they are asked to dance in a field, draw with mud or sing in a corridor!
We can all create. Some of us feel the urge to do so more than others. But none of us needs to be held back from doing so for the want of more stuff. I’d even argue we could all benefit from having less and doing more.
So, go create. Using whatever you have. Whenever you can. And no, my son didn’t take those things with him. And he’s happy without.