I grew up on a small farm with a Dad who was an engineer. He was scientific and mathematical but didn’t mind getting his hands dirty. He seemed to be able to build or fix anything.
My favourite building on the farm was his amazing workshop.
His workshop had two massive workbenches, big steel vices, tools-a-plenty, and odds and ends hanging from hooks everywhere.
When I was old enough to wield a hammer, my Dad would often give me some scrap pieces of wood and say, “Here, build something out of these things.”
Looking at the pile I’d say, “What do you want me to build?
He’d say, “I’m not going to tell you what to build! Be creative!”
He'd let me use whatever tools I wanted. (As long as they didn’t need power!)
Mostly, I’d come up with useless things like a small chair perfect for a cat, or a tiny car with square wheels. But there was always something at the end. Often they were taken apart for another project down the road.
I realized as an adult what an important lesson that was for me and what an important lesson that is for everyone.
Because being creative is one of the keys to happiness.