Are we all, just a little bit {creatively} mad?!

22 Feb

I originally saw this wonderful article on a website I love called ‘The School of Life’ and it touched such a creative nerve, that I just had to share it with you all!

Why is creativity often linked to ‘madness’ and why do creative people cause so much frustration to everyone around them?

Why do they keep going to extremes?

Why can’t they just be like normal people?

Highly creative people have unique vulnerabilities and sensitivities – ways of thinking and temperament that need to be understood and managed – for them to not only stay creative and productive but also stay healthy.

The creative mind is wired with the ability to feel with great depth and passion.  Creative people often experience the world in a way we call skinless – as if they lack the protective shield and instinctive filtering that we normally use to cope with the barrage of sensory information that comes at us all.  Without good strategies for managing this hypersensitivity, instead of creativity – the result can be a plunge into the emotional depths.

Along with skinlessness and rapid fluid thinking, creative people often have natural highs and lows, of mood and energy.

Rather than trying to live a normal or balanced life creative people can learn to embrace the highs and lows – and begin to see their lives as being like the tides. The challenge for the creative is to learn how  to navigate the tides not struggle against them or get stuck.

5 Principles For Living With A Creative Mind

1. Affirmation

Creative people need a lot of encouragement. As confident as they may seem, they are also full of doubt. Affirmation helps to buffer the skinlessness of the creative person. It needs to be at the forefront but it also needs to be real. No fake compliments please.

2. Permission To Fail

Unless you are willing to fail you will never be creative. Much of the creative process involves exploration, discovery and a willingness to “go where no one has gone before” – so although failure does not equal creativity – failure and learning from failure is a part of navigating the tidal creative life.

3. Fear Kills Creativity

Creating an environment of anxiety does not promote creativity. Fear automatically inhibits the fluid nature of creative thinking – to make us focus on a threat. While you might think fear is a great motivator, it only motivates certain kinds of responses. Originality is not one of them.

4. Room to Explore

Creative people need room to explore. An essential part of the creative (fluid) thinking process involves the search for new ways of seeing things, or new connections between old things. This often comes from what seems like ‘random’ activity like going out to new places, and seeking out new experiences. Don’t discourage curiosity.

5. They Need To Belong

Creative people need a community of like-minded types because they can often feel like they don’t belong. Creative people tend to be quite tribal . . . musicians like to work with other musicians, dancers with other dancers and so on. Find a tribe. 

brain,color,imagination,creativity,colourful,art,brainstorm-7c6fc3d21551e01f7804e2e675f2a63e_h

Image courtesy of  Yasmeanie on Deviantart Picture.

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