Songwriting is a Doing Word

“Songwriting is a doing word.”

This phrase has been running around inside of me for about five months now. It has marked the beginning of my return to songwriting, my renewed foray into my creative space, which had long been dusty and mis-placed. I may have heard it somewhere, but I am fairly certain it one of those divine relations, right words, right time to help me on my way.

The phrase carries for me both an encouragement and a warning.

An encouragement that creativity is implicitly active. The act of creating is well…an act. I take pen to paper, words to melody, soul to canvas and by this very action I begin to reveal what has previously been concealed within me.

It reminds me that regardless of the quality of what I create, continuing to practically create something out of nothing is an act of faith, and that only good things can come from habitually taking creative action. Latent creative potential keeps what I see invisible to the rest of the world. Taking creative action blesses and re-creates both the giver and the receiver.

The warning is even weightier to me than the encouragement. And it is a weightiness that has severed me from the chains of writers block. It is simple and yet it is sharp.

Songwriting is not my identity.

It has felt like it is for a long time. Music, creativity and songwriting are core to me. If I go to the centre of my heart I find a note there. And so with this intuitive knowing of what was intrinsic to my inner being, I began to hang my hopes and expectations and visions of my future upon the knowing that “I am a songwriter”. And therein lay the catch. What I imagined would spark and release me weighed me down, for “I am” statements, I have learned, are not to be approached lightly.

I have come to believe that I breathe the deepest and the freest, when the “I am” statements in my life finish with words that are relational. That reflect how my inner being relates to my Creator and to my earthly relationships.

I am loved. I am known. I am wanted. I am chosen. I am gifted.

I can sit down and rest secure in that room in my heart. And funnily enough, from there, the creativity that is still inherent within me starts to spring up of it’s own accord. I don’t like to trifle with semantics, but quietly within my heart I know and state now that “I write songs” rather than “I am a songwriter.” Once my creativity is free to act, instead of trying to carry the burden of my being, it’s amazing what gets loosened up on the inside.

So I have determined that I will not place the burden of my being upon my pen, nor upon my piano. I place my being in the hands of the One who loves me best and watch him free my soul to flourish again.

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