Archives for Self-esteem

Creative Thinking

How To Write Better and More: Advice From Authors


What gets in the way of our writing? There is no simple answer, of course, but here are some perspectives from accomplished authors on what to be aware of and what to do that may help write more and write better.

Stephen King relates an early experience that affected his writing and acceptance of himself as a writer – the kind of experience probably most of us have had to some degree: criticism from his high school teacher. He writes:

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Creative Thinking

Be Normal or Be Creative

“I don’t know what ‘normal’ means, anyway.”
How does being unusual or eccentric in our viewpoints, thinking, personal style and other choices help us be more creative and innovative?

Karl Lagerfeld, the prominent fashion designer, photographer, publisher, and artistic director of Chanel, has very eclectic and unusual tastes in clothing – so I would consider him one example of an eccentric creator.

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Identity

Barbara Sher: Having Many Interests Is Not a Disorder


Do you have a wide range of passionate interests, even "too many"? Maybe you have never "settled down" into a well-defined career. Maybe you think you have ADHD - and maybe you do, but you may really be what Barbara Sher refers to as a Scanner.

In her video below, she notes it may not be the best term, and there are others such as “Polymath,” “Renaissance Soul,” or pejorative ones like “Dilettante.”

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Identity

Using Your Creative Voice

Do you express yourself creatively - or in other ways - as fully and authentically as you want? If you're like most of us, the answer is No. For one thing, our inner dialogue can be less than helpful or encouraging.

Author Pearl Cleage points out some of the ways our inner critic may dampen our creative voice:

"I think one of the things that writers and creative artists generally have to deal with is the censors that we have in our heads, the voices that we have that say you better not tell that and don't tell that, and people will think you're not a good girl, and your grandmother's going to be mad at you and all of those things." [via brainyquote.com]

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Identity

Are All Creative People Insecure?


Even people with exceptional creative talents and accomplishments can feel insecure.

Meryl Streep, for example, has said, “I have varying degrees of confidence and self-loathing…You can have a perfectly horrible day where you doubt your talent… Or that you’re boring and they’re going to find out that you don’t know what you’re doing.”

Over the years of reading biographies and doing interviews with many highly talented and creative people, it has often struck me how many of them talk about being self-critical, and feel insecure at times.

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Identity

The Artist As Outsider

Being a misfit or outsider can be distressing or downright painful, especially as a teen, but many artists say it is part of their experience that helps them be more creative. Writer Anne Rice talks about being "a bad student, I daydreamed in class, wrote stories in my notebooks. I learned the basics, but most of my active intellectual life was outside of school. It was acutely painful because [my sister and I] felt different, like misfits. Our individuality was almost irrepressible, but I wanted to fit in."

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Creative Thinking

Alejandro Inarritu on the Creative Process


"In the creative process every human being is confronted with doubts and contradictions and flaws..."

Acclaimed for his films including "Amores Perros," "Babel" and "21 Grams," Alejandro González Iñárritu has earned a number of award nominations for directing and co-writing "Birdman."

In a theatre, we can enjoy the results of sometimes hundreds of talented people collaborating on making a movie, but there may be many years of often messy and emotionally challenging creative process that goes into getting a film actually produced and released. Iñárritu has made a number of interesting comments about that process.

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Identity

Margaret Keane: Overcoming Exploitation


In the 1960s, paintings of "sad-eyed children," massively reproduced in posters and cards, became possibly the best-selling art in the world for a time, thanks to the tireless marketing by Walter Keane of "his" work. The "big eyes" images were owned by celebrities and hung in many permanent collections.

But Walter Keane was a fraud and plagiarist: the art was actually created by his wife Margaret Keane.

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Creative Thinking

Fairy Tales and Bigger Truths


“If you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairy tales. If you want them to be more intelligent, read them more fairy tales.” ― Albert Einstein

Stories, perhaps especially the more elaborate and potent examples of fantasy and fairytale, can do more than entertain: they can reveal how others, and ourselves, manage being human. And how we can do better at it.

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