Why Creativity Coaching?

Creative concept pages of book Sunrise landscape in Summer lookiThe creative is the place where no one else has ever been. You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. What you’ll discover will be wonderful. What you’ll discover is yourself. – Alan Alda

Creativity has long been a part of my life. I was fortunate to have had a father who valued the world’s great literature giving me a reverence for books and working with words. I’m sure that’s what allowed me to develop as a writer. I also remember as a teenager when I expressed an interest in drawing and painting he brought books home from the library to encourage me. It wasn’t until I started working as a creativity coach that I fully realized what a gift my father had given me.

I found a lot of people didn’t have that kind of support for being creative when they were younger and unfortunately that can lead to the feeling that we just don’t have what it takes to be creative. Also our school systems with their focus on conformity and standardized testing tend to stifle creativity. As Beatrix Potter said, “Thank goodness I was never sent to school; it would have rubbed off some of the originality.” As a collective society generally views creativity as frivolous rather than the natural human capacity and gift it is.

Psychologist Abraham Maslow said, “The key question isn’t “What fosters creativity?” But it is why in God’s name isn’t everyone creative? Where was the human potential lost? How was it crippled? I think therefore a good question might be not why do people create? But why do people not create or innovate? We have got to abandon that sense of amazement in the face of creativity, as if it were a miracle if anybody created anything.”

The good news is that I found it’s easy to reclaim. As one participant in my Exploring Your Creative Self workshop put it,”it’s amazing that the creativity is right there just below the surface waiting to come alive.” In my twenty years of teaching the writing process and more recently in my work as a creative coach I’ve found that is always true. I’ve never worked with a client where I wondered “what are they doing here”. Instead I wonder, “what took them so long.” Keep in mind that each one of us expresses our unique creative self through a variety of possibilities: writing, painting, dance, music, gardening, cooking, creative problem solving, inventing, mechanics or whatever area we want to bring as expanded way of thinking and being to.

Pablo Picasso said, “All children are artists. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up.” Part of the secret of reclaiming our creativity is play. Be willing to just explore and experiment without needing it to mean anything or be important. Play is the quickest way to enter the creative flow. Having fun with the process helps you to ignite your creativity and then make certain to nurture the first sparks with curiosity and kindness.

Creativity coaching can offer the support, guidance and a sense of permission that we may have missed when we were younger. It can open to door to the deep sense of satisfaction that comes from expressing ourselves creatively or it can help us get moving if we find ourselves feeling stuck or blocked along our creative path.