After spending the bulk of 2020 exploring our inaugural theme, communication, we’re ready to change gears and begin exploring our second theme. Welcome to Mind.On_Creativity!
Choosing a theme can be a trying job. There are many facets of our lives that affect our brain health, which means there’s a lot to uncover. With every theme, we want to ensure we’re able to take our learnings from the previous topic and apply them to the new focus area. We believe there’s a strong crossover between communication and creativity, so it felt like a natural fit. For some, creativity can act as a means of communication. For others, it may seem like an unnatural way to express oneself. It’s a big topic, and that’s why we think it’s a perfect fit for Mind.On. Creativity is unique to each individual, just like brain health. Regardless of whether or not you think you are creative, we hope you’ll join us in exploring how creativity affects, aids, and impacts brain health. If you join us for a Brain Jam or two, maybe you’ll learn some new tools along the way.
For the next couple of weeks, it’s Mind.On_Creativity. To give context for the theme, we each wrote a bit about where our heads are at with this topic:
I’ve always viewed myself as an uncreative person. At my job, I’m on the accounts team where I work opposite to the creative team. My days are filled with planning, people managing, and updating spreadsheets and financials. It’s safe to say that my role isn’t very ‘creative’. Even my title suggests that I am not a creative person. I’ve been told time and time again that creativity can be applied to any job, no matter the work. I suppose I’ve always viewed creativity as something that can only be art-focused. And, aside from my doodles in my notebook margins, I’m far from possessing any traditional artistic abilities.
With that being said, I want to use the next few months to explore creativity and, hopefully, expand my definition of what makes a creative person. I want to develop my creative brain and understand how to apply creative thinking to different facets of my life. I’m curious to learn about what happens in the brain when we face creative blocks. And most importantly, I want to hear from all of you about how creativity has improved and/or affected your own brain health. I’m excited to dig into this theme, hear your stories, and gain knowledge about the physiology of our brains as it relates to creativity.
I like to tell myself that I make my way through life relying on logic, clear-headed analysis, and rational thinking. I also like to think of myself as a fairly practical, straightforward person. It’s a self-perception that’s not entirely accurate. I’m a human with feelings and emotions to balance out all that rationality and “right brain” thinking. It’s also limiting because it doesn’t leave a lot of room for creativity or expression. I tend to get stuck thinking about creativity in narrow terms: visual art, painting, drawing, graphic design - things I tend to be quite bad at. But deep down, I know it’s so much more than that.
I am hoping to use the exploration process of this theme to enhance and expand my own conceptualization of creativity in general, and my creativity specifically. How can I better accommodate my own creativity? How can I embrace it completely? How does it affect my brain and how can I leverage it to help my brain? I am excited to see where we take this and to hear from all of you about your own experiences with brain health and creativity. Off we go!
I would not call myself an artist by any stretch of the imagination but I do identify as a creative person. Art to me is one of many outlets for creative expression, but personally, creativity looks more like brainstorming how to solve a problem or designing an experience (novel travel plans being one of my favs), or attempting a new craft like wood working. I never really take these crafts to artistry but I love the feeling of immersing myself in the activity. Creativity to me is the process not just an end product.
And even though I know that I feel better with creative outlets, I don’t actually “use” creativity intentionally like a “tool” in the same way I use journaling, working out, and meditation to take care of my brain. In fact, I often shame my creative tendencies for being too “all over the place” and stifle them from reaching their full expression (negative points for my brain health). So I am looking forward to being deliberate about my creativity with this theme; to hear about your personal experiences, to try new ways to “use” creativity for self-care, and learn to embrace my creative side more fully.
It’s play time.