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Archives for September, 2012


Too Much On Our Mind for Creative Thinking

Our inner experience as talented, creative people could be called "teeming" - as in the title of a book by Jane Piirto, PhD: My Teeming Brain: Understanding Creative Writers.

She notes the title comes from a Keats sonnet with the lines "When I have fears that I may cease to be / before my pen has gleaned my teeming "

[From her article Themes in the Lives of Successful Adult Creative Writers.]

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Life circumstances

Traumatic Childhood, Creative Adult

"Life without pain isn't real at all." Shia LaBeouf
Many people have had traumatic childhoods, and are drawn to creative expression as part of their way to deal with it, to heal and regain self esteem.

A number of talented actors have suffered traumatic experiences, including Ashley Judd, who was sexually abused; Charlize Theron, as a teen, saw her mother shoot her father in self defense; James Dean lost his mother...
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Creative Thinking

Getting More Life From Mindful Creating

Ellen Langer, a Harvard Professor of Psychology, relates the story of being on vacation and making a spur of the moment declaration to a friend that she was "thinking of taking up painting."

She added, "I have no idea why I said that. I don’t think I’d had more than a fleeting thought or two about painting in my entire life up to that point."

Her friend is an artist and gave Langer...
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Creative Thinking

Using Fear and Anxiety to be More Creative

“I don’t do anything anymore that feels safe. If it doesn’t scare the crap out of you, then you’re not doing the right thing.”
I've always liked that comment by Sandra Bullock - but the quality and intensity of fear, which we refer to as anxiety, can both motivate and disrupt creative expression.

In his post "Turning Anxiety Into Creativity - Using what scares you to motivate you," psychotherapist and...
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Creative Expression and EMDR to Deal With Trauma, PTSD and Abuse

"I think I've spent my adult life dealing with the sense of low self-esteem that sort of implanted in me. Somehow I felt not worthy."
Halle Berry was commenting in an interview about what motivates her to support and work with an organization that helps women who escape violent homes.

She recalls being terrified that her violent father, who physically abused her mother, would turn on her.

One of the consequences for many people who suffer...
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Trusting Your Creative Self

If we are willing to put our creative work out there - into the world in some way - it will be judged and ranked.

What if our book doesn't make it to a bestseller list, our painting is not accepted by a gallery, our blog doesn't show up on a Google page one, or our movie doesn't get invited to a film festival?

One consequence is we may feel deflated, and question our worth as a...
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Creative Thinking

More Goofing Off and Daydreaming: More Creative Thinking

Don't we need to keep practicing, keep learning, keep busy to be creatively productive?

A number of psychologists and artists say daydreaming or otherwise "wasting time" is actually a way to enhance creativity.

For example, author Barbara Abercrombie writes about working on an essay about her divorce, but not having created an outline or idea for its themes after a day of reading her old journals.

She comments, "I felt I had wasted most of the day because...
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