Personal & Executive Coach

Consulting Psychologist & Psychoanalyst


Creativity and Reality

On the one hand, creativity is a powerful  impulse of expression and a source of energy and meaning.  Everyone yearns to be creative, not just people in the creative professions.  But in the latter group who are expected to produce results, the reality of deadlines, performance demands, working with others, financial pressures can create a level of stress that collides with the creative process.  While required to produce at a high level, creative professionals must cope with little feedback or negative feedback from the outside, and their own internal insecurities and personal doubts.  Too much critique and analysis in the service of improvement inhibits imagination and working outside the box.  On the other hand, with a few exceptions, those who cannot conform to real world expectations are likely to have trouble finding success.

Creativity and Trauma

Trauma of any kind embeds itself deep into the unconscious psyche, partly to protect the functioning aspects of a person’s life.  Yet processing it is critical to growth, and art is often based on the sublimation of trauma.  Meaning that processing trauma requires sourcing deep and unconscious parts of the mind, often the somatic mind.  On the one hand, trauma naturally creates blocks to protect the mind from being overwhelmed by what is difficult to process.  On the other hand, failure to process core life experiences stymies vitality.  Consider art forms such as African-American spirituals, in which extreme trauma found expression in the collective creativity of song.  But trauma doesn’t have to be annihilating to create roadblocks in a person’s life. Everyone has had experiences that were personally deeply meaningful to themselves and which has made them stuck in ways that limit them, including in their ability to be creative.  The fact that their experiences are shared by many people – such as a divorce, or poverty, or prejudice, or mental illness, etc. etc. — does not minimize the fact that the difficulty remains stuck in them.

Creativity and Coaching

Coaching does not purport to unleash brilliance or remove blocks or push you through your next gig. What it does do is stir the pot.  By identifying the specific nature of your struggle, whether it is coping with outside pressures, procrastination, feeling like a fraud, self-doubt or negative self-talk, having a companion to join your exploration can change the dynamic.  It also gives you a safe place for the existential examination of you and your path – something which many people in a creative profession don’t feel the freedom to do with the people in their lives who have a stake in your choices.