Creativity and Fear

Why did I research this?

To be nourished one must be creative and make things (aside from feeling belonging, love, power, etc) but as parents it is hard to justify “creative” time when there are so many other tasks to be done. It almost needs to be squeezed in at any given chance and once it is, it becomes a habit, a great distraction from the mundane and a fantastic way to feel fulfilled and ignite other great journeys. But how exactly can we continue to squeeze in creativity when that little voice pops in and says things like?

“This has been done before so don’t bother.”

“You are not that good at this.”

“Am I good enough to do this?”

“This doesn’t look right so stop now before you look ridiculous.”

“My space is not quite right.”

“My idea is not quite perfect yet so I’ll wait a bit longer.”

“I don’t have the right equipment so I can’t start yet.”

“I don’t have time to be doing embroidery.”


What did I find out?

Liz Gilbert talks of fear underpinning everything we do in her new book Big Magic. She says that all of these comments that whisper stop, stop and stop, belong to fear. Fear whispers to you when you are at risk of harm and mistakenly thinks that creativity; inspiration, passion and dreams are harmful. We still need fear (to keep us safe) but we just need to show it that creativity is actually not going to harm us and as Liz Gilbert says “It is necessary to become the person you were meant to become.” (2015).

Next time you find yourself about to write, bake, cook, garden, design, throw a pot on the wheel, paint, fold paper, play music, remember to have a chat to fear about your expectation of it and its role in your life. If you don’t know what to create then practice finding inspiration every day. If you want to create something that has already been created then make it because it can’t have possibly been created the way you would do it because we are all completely individuals.


How is this useful?

By identifying one emotion as the culprit of stopping creativity, one can begin talking to it, like a person to stop it from taking over your decisions. Freeing up this unnecessary fear leadership will lead to more creativity and more nourishment.

The info from this article comes from Gilbert, E. (2015). Big magic. Creative living beyond fear. United Kingdom: Bloomsbury.