Creativity is One Key to Healthy Aging.

October 14, 2021

Creativity is One Key to Healthy Aging.

May 29, 2023

I loved this Washington Post story by Matt Fuchs that outlines the research showing that singing, dancing, improv comedy, writing, and painting all help create more openness in older adults, leading to greater longevity. Of course, creativity is not just limited to the arts. Problem-solving, landscaping, traveling, and advising a friend also can make the same difference.

How many times have I heard a friend tell me, "I'm just not creative," and then they cook an exquisite and unique dinner for me? Creativity can show up in all kinds of ways. It’s about being imaginative, resourceful, and original, not just whether you can draw a perfect representation of your face.

One of the thought leaders in the article says, "Creativity can be cultivated by following passions both old and new. Try not to compare yourself to genius creators or be so focused on the outcome that the process stops being fun." Kentucky poet Gregory Welch enjoys "opposite days." He finds that new perspectives pop into his head when he turns his routines upside-down for 24 hours. When I commuted to Silicon Valley for work long ago, I chose to drive a new way to work at least one day a week. This forced me to see parts of the Bay Area I hadn’t seen before.

I think the upshot of all this is that we need to redefine what we believe creativity is and then actively seek ways to jumpstart our creative spirit. Who knows, it just might add a few years to your life.

How could you break out of your habitual neural pathways (or your boring commute patterns) with a commitment to being a little more creative?

Consider joining our Mastering Creativity workshop in February with me and Dr. Srikumar Rao.

Go deeper with a workshop, in person or online.

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