Iman Baber

I don’t know about you, but I’m a DIYer. I’m crazy about anything DIY. And there’s no end to the ideas all over the Internet. But I as I scroll through Pinterest, I can’t help but notice how repetitive everything seems. Rainbow slime? Seen that. Washi tape phone holders? Old! It seems now that endless spins on the same thing is what DIY really is. Every once in awhile a fresh, new idea may come to life, but not long before it is repeated again and again and again. Soon, all the charm that it once had is worn away from overuse. Trendiness has taken over creativity.

There’s no doubt that the current DIY trends are cute and aesthetically pleasing. But, let’s be honest, we all get sick of seeing pink pineapples and unicorns at some point. And when people find that new fad to obsess over, it’s guaranteed that you will see it all over the internet all- day-everyday. This repetitiveness, however, doesn’t encourage true creativity. The same things are being used over and over again. Where’s the thought in that? Our human need to follow the trend does no help for us at all – it only limits the true potential that we have. What’s more, it creates the idea that true creativity only means what people like. So what does everyone default to? Trends! It’s an endless cycle that no one breaks from. Is creativity doomed to be limited to pastel colors and flowery fonts? Not only that, it also bleeds into our creative expression. All our clothing is driven by what is popular in the world. Current slangs make up most of our conversations. Rather than becoming a society that encourages originality, we are slowly becoming a cookie cutter society. If everyone dresses, talks, and acts the same, then what will stay original?

The worst part is how trends are also being enforced on younger children. Now, if you want to see the latest trends, just walk down the aisle for children’s crafts. They are becoming more ready-cut parts to stick together, rather than teaching children skills such as cutting, gluing, and sewing. Instead of learning these crucial fine motor skills that they may need later in life, they are learning about pop culture. Is it now that teaching a kid about what makeup is cool is more important than teaching them how to safely handle scissors?  I get kind of sick whenever I see those kinds of craft kits. Seriously, who would buy a kit with barely anything to work with, discouraging any originality and opportunity to obtain new skills. Everyone apparently, just because it’s trendy. We’re becoming so dependent on trends to run our society, that we also limit the creativity of those who have the most potential. And look at children’s clothing. Little girls can already be seen wearing shoulder-less shirts and short shorts. It’s creative thinking that drives society forward. Not circulating on the same ideas for eternity.

This repetitiveness is a breeding-ground for the cookie cutter society. It feeds the concept that we should all be the same. This, in turn, will reinforce the idea that following the crowd is more important than preserving originality. We believe that going with the flow is the way to go. Our true personalities stay out of the spotlight, pushed out of the way in order to accommodate society’s expectations. However, history has shown us that those who made breakthroughs  were those that were true to themselves. They did not stick with society, rather they acted upon their own ideas and creativity. For example, take Renaissance artists, or influential writers. Driven by their own ideas and ambition, these people were able to shape society in countless ways. And they were able to do this by breaking from the clutches of trend following.

Now, I’m not saying trends are bad. They’re popular for a reason. But, we shouldn’t allow them to hold us down. Rather, we should use them as a platform to lift ourselves to greater heights. We should see the current ideas, and take from them to create new things. We shouldn’t be afraid to break free from the mold. And that’s how we can solve this problem. So, look for different things. Rather than watching trends like a hawk, explore for things that differ from what you’re used to seeing. Ask yourself ways you can change the norms. There are so many ways you can enhance your creativity by keeping a growth mindset. And encourage others to do the same. The more people who try new things, the more comfortable everyone will feel expressing their true self. And this will spark the fire that will grow into the flame of originality. So, I dare you, be bold. Be different. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going back to critique Pinterest.