Express Yourself

Editor in Chief Karol DeWulf Nickell

It was a simple question: “How many of you consider yourself to be creative?” Without pause I raised my hand. When I realized I was the only one in the room of about 30 to do so, I was astonished. The group, all college grads, included engineers, human resources professionals, military officers, health care consultants and agricultural researchers; a good number were also husbands, wives and parents.

Creativity does not end with childhood

How could these smart, accomplished, active and social men and women not feel creative? Children create naturally. They turn a box into a house, a parent’s tablet into a scribble pad and cereal into a necklace for mom. We love it when kids surprise us with their creative thoughts, abilities and projects. But while we expect creativity from kids, we usually don’t from adults. What does that say about our understanding of being creative?

Making creativity part of our everyday lives

Just because we aren’t destined to be the next Pablo Picasso doesn’t mean we’re not creative creatures. In fact, I think if we embrace creativity as a part of our everyday lives, we ensure it will add to our overall happiness.

In this issue, our first anniversary edition, we celebrate creativity and its tie to happiness in numerous ways: Our exclusive cover story on Olivia Newton-John shares that she feels creativity is with her every day. Our special, 24-page section on creativity and happiness brings together some of the best minds on and practitioners of the subject, including author Dr. Nancy Andreasen, singer-songwriter Tori Amos and entrepreneur Jim Denevan.

Add creative thinking to your work, your life

Our stalwart group of columnists, including Gretchen Rubin and Shawn Achor, dives headfirst into the topic, offering advice on how to be more creative and unleash those “aha” moments at home and work. A favorite part of every issue, our social media survey shares your thoughts on creativity. We return the favor via our Year of Happiness calendar with 30 days of creative ideas, activities, quotes and tips, all there for your choosing.

So, whether you’d be on the yes or no side in terms of considering yourself creative, take a look at this issue with an open mind. There’s so much to gain if you let yourself go!

- Karol DeWulf Nickell

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