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Creativity, the Arts, and Madness

Creativity, the Arts, and Madness | Mental Health & Creativity | Scoop.it

By Maureen Neihart, Psy.D.

Abstract

A brief, historical review of the alleged association between creativity and madness is followed by highlights from recent research in psychiatry and clinical  psychology that address this relationship.

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Eric Maisel on Dealing With Stress To Be More Creative - The Creative Mind

Eric Maisel on Dealing With Stress To Be More Creative - The Creative Mind | Mental Health & Creativity | Scoop.it
Living the artist’s life can be very stressful, but not if you shift from feeling your work is a demand, to an opportunity that feels enjoyable.
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Turning Adversity into Creative Growth

Turning Adversity into Creative Growth | Mental Health & Creativity | Scoop.it
There's little doubt that trauma can be immensely painful, often leaving deep emotional and psychological scars long after the stressful experience has passed. But can there be a silver lining for creativity?
Douglas Eby's insight:

Trauma takes many forms, and has different sources and levels of impact for each of us. See quotes by and about Sarah Polley, Halle Berry, Lady Gaga, will.i.am, Jennifer Lawrence, Jonathan Safran Foer and many others, in my article Creative People and Trauma http://talentdevelop.com/6550/

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The Therapist in My Canvas - Psychology Tomorrow Magazine

The Therapist in My Canvas - Psychology Tomorrow Magazine | Mental Health & Creativity | Scoop.it

"The intensity of certain emotions, the rawness of certain experiences and the profundity of certain thoughts touch those aspects of our being that lie beyond the realms of expression in words. Certain situations are so intense and deep seated that it becomes difficult to simply explain them. They are to be felt, experienced and acknowledged in their own form.

 

"That is what a blank canvas can help establish and bolster."

 

Douglas Eby's insight:

Creative expression helps many people heal and many artists make use of traumatic experiences in their creative work. Psychologist Stephen A. Diamond, for example, notes that French sculptor, painter, and film maker Niki de Saint Phalle’s fury — "some of which stemmed from having been sexually abused by her father — fostered a fecund creativity, that served her well throughout her prolific career.” From post: Creative People and Trauma http://talentdevelop.com/6550/creative-people-and-trauma/

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The Critical Inner Voice Explained | Psychalive

The Critical Inner Voice Explained | Psychalive | Mental Health & Creativity | Scoop.it
The critical inner voice is a pattern of destructive thoughts toward ourselves and others that is at the root of much of our self-destructive and harmful behavior.
Douglas Eby's insight:

Related book: Conquer Your Critical Inner Voice: A Revolutionary Program to Counter Negative Thoughts and Live Free from Imagined Limitations
by Robert W. Firestone, PhD, Lisa Firestone, PhD, Joyce Catlett, M.A.
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1572242876/talentdevelopmen

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The Link between Unidentified Creative Abilities and Mental Health

The Link between Unidentified Creative Abilities and Mental Health | Mental Health & Creativity | Scoop.it

By Mary Taylor, LCSW


Do you feel you are on a different “path” from most people? Do you have a sense of imagination that, it seems, few understand? Have you ever been told you are “too sensitive,” “think too much” or are “too much of a perfectionist”?

 

If you answered, “yes” to any of these questions, you may be a highly creative person. Many highly creative people remain unaware that they are, in fact, creative.


The inability to identify highly creative individuals in and of itself may place them at risk for serious and longstanding difficulties in many areas of life. Without appropriate education and intervention strategies their problems often continue to escalate over the long term.

 

 

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Mariel Hemingway and Barbara Kopple on their documentary Running From Crazy

Mariel Hemingway and Barbara Kopple on their documentary Running From Crazy | Mental Health & Creativity | Scoop.it
The film "Running from Crazy" by Barbara Kopple is about the mental health challenges in the lives of family members of author Ernest Hemingway.

 

“Knowing that there’s so much suicide and so much mental illness in my family, I’ve always kind of been ‘running from crazy,’ worried that one day I’d wake up and be in the same position,” Mariel Hemingway said.

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The Happiest People Pursue the Most Difficult Problems

The Happiest People Pursue the Most Difficult Problems | Mental Health & Creativity | Scoop.it
They're a reminder that mastery, membership, and meaning are the best motivators.

Via Sandeep Gautam
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Life Coaching for Baby Boomers's curator insight, April 10, 2013 4:35 PM

HAS HAPPINESS PASSED YOU BY?

FIND HAPPINESS HELP AT;

www.happinesslifecoaching.com

Douglas Eby's comment, April 12, 2013 12:42 AM
One of our primary tools as a creative person is imagination. But in his book "Stumbling on Happiness" Harvard psychology professor Daniel Gilbert proposes that imagination may directly impact our sense of happiness in limiting or distorting ways. http://sco.lt/6q2fZ3
Tony Brugman (Bright & Company)'s curator insight, April 23, 2013 9:55 AM

Worth to read article by Harvard's Rosabeth Moss Kanter on motivating people. She argues that the most happy people she knows "are dedicated to deaing with the most difficult problems." Therefore, in order to get the most out of their people, high-innovation companies apply three "sources of motivation": mastery, membership, and meaning.

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The science behind meditation, and why it makes you feel better

The science behind meditation, and why it makes you feel better | Mental Health & Creativity | Scoop.it
Meditation yields a surprising number of health benefits, including stress reduction, improved attention, better memory, and even increased creativity and feelings of compassion.
Douglas Eby's insight:

Here are a couple of programs for meditation, on my Personal Growth Information site:

http://personalgrowthinformation.com/category/meditation/

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7 Myths Of Meditation, BUSTED

7 Myths Of Meditation, BUSTED | Mental Health & Creativity | Scoop.it
Despite the growing popularity of meditation, prevailing misconceptions about the practice are a barrier that prevents many people from trying meditation and receiving its profound benefits for the body, mind, and spirit.
Douglas Eby's insight:

List of Meditation and mindfulness articles:
http://www.talentdevelop.com/articlelive/categories/Meditation-and-mindfulness/
-----
Mindful Solutions for Stress, Anxiety, and Depression – CD program
http://anxietyreliefsolutions.com/31/mindful-solutions-cd-for-stress-anxiety-and-depression/

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Conversations with Hattie

Conversations with Hattie | Mental Health & Creativity | Scoop.it

By Hattie x. "Being diagnosed with Manic Depression felt like being given a death sentence at the time (though it wasn't I would duly discover), whilst realizing I was highly sensitive was like coming home, finally discovering who I was and having answers to many many questions as to how I was in the world and who I fundamentally was as a person."

Douglas Eby's insight:

Related post: Giftedness, sensitivity and psychiatric drugs: why do we take them and why do we quit? By Cat Robson.

 

"The mental suffering of sensitive, creative and divergent children and adults is real. Existential depression, loneliness, and emotional overwhelm are very real, as are the complications arising from our use of behaviors and substances to alleviate our suffering. These experiences don’t require a diagnosis of mental illness in order to be taken seriously. And treating our suffering doesn’t need to include tampering with our highly sensitive brains."

http://talentdevelop.com/3898/

 

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Creative People and Madness

http://talentdevelop.com/creative-people-personality-and-mental-health-webinar/#madness - Many mental health challenges and myths relate to creative thinking...
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Dealing Well With Life

Dealing Well With Life | Mental Health & Creativity | Scoop.it
Eric Maisel, Ph.D., explains why emotional health is actually the ability to deal effectively with the problems that life throws your way.

 

"As odd as it sounds, emotional health is a certain sort of ability.  It is the ability to deal well with life. If someone criticizes you and you fall apart, that extreme reaction signals that you don’t have all the “coping skills” or “inner resources” you need."

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To suppress or to explore? Emotional strategy may influence anxiety

To suppress or to explore? Emotional strategy may influence anxiety | Mental Health & Creativity | Scoop.it
When trouble approaches, what do you do? Run for the hills? Pretend it isn't there? Hide? Or do you focus on the promise of rain in those looming dark clouds?

 

"The study revealed that those who engage in an emotional regulation strategy called reappraisal tended to also have less social anxiety and less anxiety in general than those who avoid expressing their feelings."

Douglas Eby's insight:

Dr. Cheryl Arutt refers to her TEDx video – “That Good Feeling of Control” and notes the title comes from TV host Fred Rogers who wanted to teach kids how to deal with the “mad” they felt inside, and be able to decide what to do with these kinds of strong feelings, and that what he was talking about was self-regulation and affect regulation that can help us as adults, too. -- From post: Cheryl Arutt on Mental Health and Creative People

http://talentdevelop.com/6369/cheryl-arutt-on-mental-health-and-creative-people/

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Gifted and Stressed

Gifted and Stressed | Mental Health & Creativity | Scoop.it

"No artist is pleased. There is no satisfaction whatever at any time. There is only a queer, divine dissatisfaction, a blessed unrest that keeps us marching and makes us more alive than the others.” - Martha Graham

 

For many gifted and creative people, this “blessed unrest” may also help maintain the kind of chronic arousal that leads to harmful stress reactions.

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Channeling Depression Into a Powerful Tool for Creativity

Channeling Depression Into a Powerful Tool for Creativity | Mental Health & Creativity | Scoop.it
By: Jennifer Haupt - "I wouldn't exactly call depression a gift, but I’ve come to accept the restless emptiness and nagging sadness as signals from my soul instead of merely the symptoms of an illness to be excised."
Douglas Eby's insight:

In his article [on my Depression and Creativity site] "The Art of Seeing Depression" author Tom Wootton of Bipolar Advantage writes, "I began to redefine what depression is and better recognize the features that I could now ‘see’ more clearly. My scale began to change from one based on pain to one based on a much richer perception of what was going on." http://depressionandcreativity.org/the-art-of-seeing-depression/

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Talk Details

Talk Details | Mental Health & Creativity | Scoop.it
How does an illness become an identity? 2013 Andrew Solomon

 

 

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Dealing with fame - or not

Dealing with fame - or not | Mental Health & Creativity | Scoop.it

Many talented actors have an ambivalent attitude about gaining or pursuing celebrity status, or even just high visibility.

 

Gwyneth Paltrow said about being named the “World’s Most Beautiful Women in the World”: "I was beyond surprised, flattered, and I still kinda can’t believe it. It’s, it’s really cool.”

 

“I think you have to keep your distance from mainstream Hollywood in order to be a normal human being,” Sarah Polley once commented.

 

Lynda Carter was also once voted “The Most Beautiful Woman In The World” and admits “there was a short time where I believed the hype. Not the “beautiful” things but that I believed I was really important, and that didn’t last very long because it didn’t feel good.”

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Catherine Zeta Jones: What You Should Know About Bipolar Disorder

Catherine Zeta Jones: What You Should Know About Bipolar Disorder | Mental Health & Creativity | Scoop.it

"Actress Catherine Zeta-Jones checked into a treatment center on Monday to treat her bipolar II disorder in a 30-day program. The actress went public with her illness in April 2011 after her husband, Michael Douglas, spilled the beans to Oprah Winfrey. Oh, thank God my husband isn’t a regular guest on that show.

She said in her appearance on “Good Morning America” two years ago that she didn’t want to become the poster child for bipolar disorder–that she, in fact, never wanted to go public with it. However, she has become just that: the beautiful, public face behind the disorder. And I, for one, am relieved that world can make a connection between one of the most talented and glamorous movie stars to a misunderstood illness.

 

 

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Creative People and Anxiety

There are many different kinds of anxiety which can prevent people from being as creative as they could otherwise be.
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Jaime A. Heidel's comment, May 1, 2013 8:28 PM
I think my creativity is born from my anxiety.
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Idaho Mountain Express: Mariel Hemingway is no longer ‘running from crazy'

Idaho Mountain Express: Mariel Hemingway is no longer ‘running from crazy' | Mental Health & Creativity | Scoop.it

"Actress and Ketchum local Mariel Hemingway takes an unflinching look at the potential causes of her family’s dysfunction through interviews in a new documentary film, “Running From Crazy,” which won a Best of Festival second screening last weekend at the second annual Sun Valley Film Festival. The film is directed by Barbara Kopple."

Douglas Eby's insight:

Read quote from her new book (with Bobby Williams): "The WillingWay: Stepping Into the Life You're Meant to Live" on "what thoughts will be guiding our new day."

https://www.facebook.com/PersonalGrowthInfo/posts/241859482625452

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Guided imagery and meditation: the Relaxing Rhythms Program

Guided imagery and meditation: the Relaxing Rhythms Program | Mental Health & Creativity | Scoop.it

"Meditation is hard work. If you’re expecting it to bring instant peace, forget about it. What you get instead is a face-to-face meeting with all the stuff tumbling around in your busy brain…Over the years I’ve learned to react to it less, and to give my thoughts more space." Joan Borysenko, PhD.

 

She is among the teachers in the Relaxing Rhythms Guided Training Program by leaders in the field of health and wellness: Doctors Deepak Chopra, Dean Ornish and Andrew Weil.

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Creative People and Madness

A number of mental health challenges and myths relate to creative people.
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Cindy Hartman's curator insight, April 8, 2013 8:13 PM

ADHD traits are similar to traits seen in highly creative persons and often, highly creative people are found to have ADHD. The ENTP personality, the  “inventor”, the “artist”, the “writer”, the “actor”… Think daydreamer and poet, Robert Frost or the “addled” inventor Thomas Edison… And then there is da Vinci and his scant 17 paintings over the course of 67 years. Some of da Vinci’s paintings were never even finished because his interests were “many and diverse” Classic ADHD. Creativity is born of original thought. ADDers have minds that put things together in new and different ways. Adders and creatives have the enviable ability to think abstractly, outside the proverbial box. Novel ideas and approaches abound. These folks are often quirky, unconventional, off-the-wall. Madness? You decide!

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The Emotional Wellness Habit

The Emotional Wellness Habit | Mental Health & Creativity | Scoop.it

By Eric Maisel. "Although we’ve lost this way of looking at personality, at one time it was assumed that a full quarter of human beings were born “melancholic.” Whether that view is accurate or not there’s no reason to assume that we don’t come into the world with some hard-wired proclivities, including for some of us a vulnerability to sadness."

 

 

Douglas Eby's insight:

See more articles by Eric Maisel

http://talentdevelop.com/articlelive/authors/45/Eric-Maisel

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Our Shadow Self

Our Shadow Self | Mental Health & Creativity | Scoop.it
Carl Jung: “The shadow is the negative side of the personality, the sum of all those unpleasant qualities we like to hide.

 

“I think many of us feel like we must wear a happy face all the time and overlook the cracks. This is not true. You can own the cracks, be with them, listen to what they have to tell you, and use them.”

Speaker/ writer/ coach/ therapist Ane Axford

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