Creativity – Characterized by originality and expressiveness; imaginative (American Heritage Dictionary)

Appreciation - Recognition of the quality, value, significance, or magnitude of people and things.  (American Heritage Dictionary)

Looking at those definitions, one can see the close relation between the two words.  When we create something, whatever that may be, we put ourselves into that project; we give much effort, and there is a sense of pride in the very depth of our artistic soul.  Many times, we are so proud of our work that we want to share it with the world, or with friends and family – many times, there is no feedback, many times, it seems as if no one is listening.  There is no appreciation.

And that takes us to the definition of appreciation and why a bit of appreciation goes a long way.  Artists/writers are emotional and very creative people, whether they show it on the outside or not.  Lack of feedback or appreciation can weaken the artist’s spirit.  It may seem as if a vortex has swallowed his/her precious efforts and no one seems to notice.  What’s worse is that the artist/writer identifies with his/her work so deeply that lack of appreciation translates into lack of esteem/love/appreciation towards the artist-persona, or the human behind the work or piece of art.  Therefore, we as writers/artists tend to suffer when our work is ignored, not recognize or praised, and we may fall into artistic self-pity or worst, depression and lack of motivation, which can only lead to artist or writer’s block and the false belief that “we are just not good enough.”

Next time you are feeling so low in relation to your art or writing, think of why you are feeling that way.  It may be that you are lacking a bit of appreciation from the ones who matter most, or even from yourself.  If others fail to verbalize appreciation for your work (many times this is the form of appreciation that we pay close attention to or notice the most), then look at the image in the mirror, smile, and know that whom you see is capable of much, much more, and has an eternal creative spirit that wants to keep going.

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