I’m not creative


Some very creative people have told me that they are not creative at all.  Really?  Because they are creative problem solvers in their field and they express themselves in all sorts of ways in their physical appearance and in their home environment.  I think this “I am not creative” feeling goes back to “I can’t draw” ergo “I am not an artistic and creative type of person.”  I am frequently stunned when very successful people tell me that they are not creative.  How did you get that project done?  How did you coordinate that team?  How did you find that solution?  Guess what?  Those all require creativity!

It’s time to separate out artistic skill, whether inborn or learned, from creativity.  My work as an art therapist hinges on helping people develop CREATIVE coping skills.  If they can have success in the art studio, hopefully they can translate that into success in life.  Can you tolerate frustration, distress, uncertainty, anger, confusion, and self-doubt?  Because all of these things surely present themselves in the art studio everyday.  If you can learn to tolerate it in the studio, you can learn to tolerate it in life.

The next time you catch yourself saying “I am not creative”, sincerely ask yourself what you mean by that.  Do you mean that you do not have artistic skill?  Because that is another thing entirely.  Give yourself credit for the artistry and creativity you bring to whatever your work is.  Neurosurgeons are creative.  Accountants are creative.  Teachers are creative.  You are creative.  Celebrate and honor that.


3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. robin
    Dec 21, 2010 @ 03:49:34

    sometimes i feel like i’m not creative. how does one regenerate the creativity that has disappeared?


  2. Lisa E.
    Dec 24, 2010 @ 13:59:10

    Great blog! I can relate to a lot of these ideas. I am big into teaching my clients about Positive Psychology and have incorporated it into some art therapy groups. They learn this very idea of creativity- it’s not just being good at painting or knitting, it’s about creatively finding money for the bus fare, sitting through their distress, solving a problem, etc!


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