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Mini Series: Mindset Matters

This week we are honing in on the creative mindset (Click HERE to see Tuesday’s blog post). There are numerous reports and studies that dive into how mindset affects our output. From the placebo effect being validated left, right and center, to visualization utilized in high performance sport, and positive self talk and affirmations used in therapy treatment plans, it is clear that our mindset as human beings matters a lot.

We may not be athletes or in a counselling session, but our mindset as creatives matters to our craft, productivity and joy.

How does our mindset affect our relationship to creativity?

As with everything in life our mindset has a huge impact on our creative journey. Just think about the impact your mindset has each morning when you get out of bed. There’s a reason the expression “woke up on the wrong side of the bed” is so prevalent in our culture today. When our mindset is negative, it follows that our experiences, interactions and feelings will also be negative, or at least, be perceived to be. I’m not saying we need to swing too far in the other direction and engage with toxic positivity, because when all we do is maintain this positive attitude when life just sucks, when creativity refuses to flow, it becomes just as draining and disheartening as negativity. I think the key to a creative mindset is to be authentic and honest with ourselves about what we are experiencing and reflecting that energy into our work, not at it, or at ourselves for daring to be creative. When we embrace authenticity and try to maintain a more positive outlook, we can reshape our difficult days, our creative struggles into a learning process of growth instead of a ball and chain weighing us down in the mire of negative thoughts and self deprecating humour.

Our mindset is so closely linked with our creativity. Our minds generate our creative work. If we are being negative towards our experiences and our creativity, feeling uninspired, criticizing our work before we even make it, talking down to ourselves, letting imposter syndrome run the show, we will remain unfulfilled, hurt and deeply entrenched in patterns of betrayal and crippling self doubt. Our relationship with creativity in this mindset is dysfunctional at best, toxic and detrimental to our wellbeing at worst. However, if we were to approach our creative projects with the enthusiasm of a child, the mindset of ‘it is what it is’, the drive to try and fail over and over again with the goal of learning from those experiences, of hyping ourselves up, of encouragement and courage, then our creativity becomes this engine for change and centering in our lives. When we embrace this childlike wonder mindset in relation to our creativity, our relationship to creativity becomes one of trust, safety and joy.

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