The Connection Between Nature and Creativity

Written By

Jasmine Gharavi

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I'm a 25-year old girl based in Denver, Colorado. Kim Collective is a space where I share about beauty, faith, food & home, style, travel, well-being, and everything in between. Thanks for stopping by!

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From the beginning of time, humans have belonged to nature. Like the flowers blossoming around us, the trees rooting their deep foundation in the ground, or the deer protecting her baby fawn with an instinct one doesn’t have to think about – as humans, we are one and of the same. A different form, yes, but intrinsically tied to its origin in the same way.

Yet somewhere along the way, evolution crept up and modern-day society got the best of us. As its noise became harder and harder to ignore, we began to drift away from this internal connection. But amidst all these distractions – the trees still dance, the birds still sing, and the ocean waves still come alive as they crash – and we are once again reminded of where we came from.

No matter how much we evolve – like the tree outside your window – our roots remain the same.




But what does this have to do with creativity?

The more we look at nature, the more its driving force can be seen. At its core, nature has an innate desire to create. We see it everywhere, from the cycle of life, to the birth of new leaves, to the colors and patterns in the flowers we see, to all our varying species – these are all forms of nature’s creation. We see creativity at the root of every form of life. To be creative is nature’s purpose, desire, and way of being.

If we understand that nature’s creativity is innate, just like our connection to nature – it all becomes clear. After all, we move the same way. Our creativity is also innate.

Now all of a sudden – It doesn’t seem coincidental, that our creativity thrives in natural environments, where we can recognize our roots. To connect to one is to connect to the other. Returning to one is returning to the other. Surrounding ourselves with nature allows our innate creativity to emerge. Let’s explore what this looks like in practice. 



Nature invigorates us and stimulates our mind

When I was in Costa Rica, something deep within me shifted. It started slow and then hit me all of a sudden – the awakening that I felt. Everywhere I turned, there nature was. And the most beautiful forms of it.

The flowers carried such a vibrant pink color, taking on different shapes and forms with every new one that I saw. The mountain tops painted me a horizon, and I had never seen so much green in my entire life. The plants seemed to have a mind of their own, their bodies creating unique pathways for us to walk. The colors were like a green screen before my eyes, as if someone had edited the saturation. The sounds of the rainforest kept me awake and then lulled me to sleep every night, leading me to the wildest dreams.

It was never truly quiet. Like candy to my eyes and music for my soul, I was fed in a way I’d never been fed before. The rainforest was alive, and so was I.

While I didn’t necessarily create in the traditional sense while I was there, it led me to a state of mind where creativity was easier to retrieve. While we often think of creativity as the painter, filmmaker, or poet – to be creative can be as simple as thinking outside the box, coming up with a unique solution, or a clever way to portray a message. Creativity is alive and all around us – even where we tend to miss it. It shows up in our words, the way we collaborate with others, simply in the way our mind works. As I was here for a college Communication course, this is where I first noticed it. My mind was invigorated and yet refreshed all at once. When it came time to work on group projects or complete class assignments, ideas seemed to flow forth with more ease. With so much variety in the environment around me, my brain had more to respond to, more stimuli for its innovation. 



Nature continues to inspire us

Creativity stems from the emotions we feel within 

Returning from my trip, I was more full than I had ever imagined. But this was the type of fullness that led to a new type of hunger – the hunger to express. There was so much within me, that it was begging to come out. After all, creativity is born out of our desire to generate something new that reflects something once living within. To create is to make these parts of our inner world known to the outside world as if each represents a different part of us.

While not everyone can travel to Costa Rica, these feelings of awe and wonder can find us every day. They visit us when we watch the sunset, enamored by its different shades of bright oranges and pinks. When we look up to the moon and feel the power of its presence. Or even in the rain, as we are moved by the peace it brings with its fall. Not only do these feelings strengthen our desire to create, but they aid in the creative process as well.

Various studies have found that the feelings of awe and fascination we experience from nature can reduce the mental fatigue our brain experiences, thus improving the attention and focus we need for the “creative idea stage.” It can become easier for creative ideas and inspiration to form when we look at the world around us in a new light (Gregoire, 2014). Much of our initial inspiration can be linked back to these feelings of awe, but it’s not only positive emotions that lead us here. There is something equally impactful in the way nature can remind us of our darkness, or show us the way of life. As we observe nature mimic themes of our very own society’s humanity, we may even be moved to sadness. In all of its different forms, nature connects us to what makes us human – our emotions.




Nature is our original muse

Nature continues to play a vital part in the creative process – both in the creative idea stage and later execution – by giving us continuous material to draw from.

Have you ever read a poem that so beautifully captured a feeling, characteristic, or experience – by simply comparing it to something in nature? A story that was able to convey a hidden message – by using nature’s metaphor to translate it? Somehow, nature can communicate what words alone are not able to. Creativity asks us to make these connections, to see the patterns that exist all around us. Yet it can be easy to go through our lives, failing to see nature in this way. Let us not forget – that all forms of nature are the perfect outlet for our curiosity and imagination to run wild.



Even as I was writing this blog post, I caught myself viewing nature differently:

Suddenly the tree outside my window left so much more for me to explore. He was not just a form of life, but a whole story waiting to unfold. While not created yet, I saw poetry in the way he moved, in the way he existed. I saw parallels in the way his growth mimicked yours and mine, and in the way his old leaves would fall. Funny enough, I noticed the more the other trees swayed back and forth, the more he did too. Yet they all seemed to have a personality, the way they moved just a little bit different. They seemed to think the birds were playing music just for them. Or maybe they were, and there was something I just didn’t know. Maybe there was more to them than we once thought. I wondered how long he had been there, what he had seen, what he had lived through.

No matter where it takes us, our imagination is often the gateway to our creativity. As a reader, I challenge you – the next time you’re in nature allow your mind to wander and your curiosity to get the best of you. Don’t fight it, but see where it takes you. You might find that it leads you to your most original ideas, takeaways, and comparisons. Whether it reveals itself through a story, painting, or even a marketing campaign at work – its possibilities are endless.

To create is the greatest gift we have, and the most natural thing we can do. And when we step into nature, something innate within us shifts back into what is most innate for us to do. For those who have lost sight of their creativity, remember that nature will always be here. And whenever we’re ready, she’ll hold our hand, drawing us a clear path back to where our creativity has been living. And let this be your greatest takeaway…

Return to your roots. Return to nature. Return to creativity.

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