Restoring Creative Innocence

Some people may watch the video below and quickly judge the parents for exploiting their daughter’s talents.  Others may be incensed because their child could do comparable work.  Still others may be drawn in by the pure innocence of the young girl’s desire to create, experiment, and discover.  I, personally, find the video somewhat challenging to watch because I realize that in contrast my creativity has lost much of its child-like wonder.

My confession is that I have taken myself too seriously.  I have sullied the simplicity of my creative nature with complicated schemes for what I should do with my creation after I have created it.  I have weighed my innovation down with convoluted notions and the pressure of public opinion.  I have dishonored the purity of the process by focusing my attention and (if I’m completely honest) my a affections on the potential of the end product.  I have resigned myself to living within comfortable boundaries, and have limited my vision with regulatory restrictions.  I have censored my inquisitive courage, and have instead numbed out to the drone of the familiar.  I have busied myself with the dullness of preconceived notions, paying little regard to the awaiting adventure of the unknown.  I forget the visceral reactions to awe…and wonder…and delight.  In contrast to Aelita Andre, I have become bored, anemic and frail.

So whether this video frustrates you (because your child is just as good as she), or whether it infuriates you (because you think her parents opportunistic), or whether you think it brilliant in some aspect or another…may it cause you to take a moment of pause to consider your own creativity…and to hunger for a return to child-like wonderment.

…for some odd reason, I have a sudden urge to paint in a bright pink tutu.

Fostering A Creative Mind

I discovered creativity expert Eric Maisel on YouTube.  I found his ideas quite refreshing because of his cognitive approach to creativity.  I took the liberty of re-titling his video clip for this blog, because I think that ultimately what he’s teaching on is how to care for a creative mind, rather than how to get one.

I’ll be highlighting more of his videos in the future, because I love the way he takes a scientifically sound look at the artistic process and addresses many of the challenges and pitfalls that threaten our imaginative thinking, in his own brainy way!

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3 Important Steps to Acquiring (Fostering) a Creative Mind:

  1. Quieting the mind (avoid monkey mind) to allow creative ideas to percolate.
  2. Adjusting negative self-talk by:  a). listening to our inner dialogue,  b). disputing the thoughts that are untrue, and  c). substituting more affirmative language
  3. Sleep thinking to aid the creative process apart from the cloud of a million tiny thoughts keeping you from the Big Ideas.

So how about you?

  • Have you tried his technique of intentionally stopping in the middle of a cram-packed, hurried-up day to create a rested mind?
  • What are some of the biggest bullies in your negative inner dialogue?  Where do you think those ideas came from?  (Sometimes identifying the source can help us more directly address the issues that keep those thoughts rattling around in our head).
  • What is your perspective on the concept of “sleep thinking” that he shared? Have you tried his idea of going to bed with an idea of wonder instead of worry? I can’t wait to try that one myself!

We’d love to hear your stories regarding the concepts in this video.  So if you gained personal insight, experienced an area of breakthrough by using one of Eric’s techniques, or simply have an opinion about the video, please share your thoughts below!

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