Robin Williams: Intensity Is Not Pathology

The tone of a number of responses to the suicide of Robin Williams seem based in the insidious “Crazy Artist” mythology: that artistic creativity depends on mental disorder.

Psychologist Scott Barry Kaufman commented that Williams’ “comedic genius was a result of many factors…In contrast, his suicide was strongly influenced by his mental illness. This romanticism of mental illness needs to stop.”

Psychologist Cheryl Arutt emphasizes that creative people need to show self-compassion and take care of themselves: “You can’t protect the art without protecting the artist.” She also emphasizes that whether or not you use difficulties in life for art, “Your pain is a part of you, but you are not your symptoms; you are so much more.”

Tips on Speaking Publicly for Introverts

Beth Buelow [] says about speaking invitations: “Of all the aspects of public speaking [how to be painlessly sociable] is almost the more challenging. It’s not necessarily getting up and doing what you do, it’s the before and after.”

This post includes an excerpt video of Andy Mort interviewing Buelow, from the much longer interview available to members of the Sheep Dressed Like Wolves Member’s Haven – an “Online community for introverted and highly sensitive creatives.”

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A Little Bit Every Day Course

“If you are an introverted or Highly Sensitive Person it is quite probable that you carry with you a deep longing to feel like what you do in life matters.

“By nature, developing a sense of purpose in life takes time, discipline, and commitment, so this longing and the reality of our noisy world are often starkly opposed to one another.”

Andy Mort – in free intro to his course.

DIY Self-Esteem
by confidence coach Joanna Moore“Liking yourself gives your life a new dimension and it’s just such a joy to wake up and not beat yourself up… This kind of freedom is beyond explanation and it’s one of the biggest gifts you can give yourself.” – From testimonial by Anne-Sophie Reinhardt
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Bryce Dallas Howard and Ron Howard on the inspiration of still photography

Project Imagin8ion, was a user-generated photo contest that inspired a Hollywood short film, titled “When You Find Me” – produced by Ron Howard and directed by Bryce Dallas Howard. In collaboration with Canon and the Project Imagin8ion community, they selected winning entries out of 96,000 photos submitted from across the world to inspire the main […]
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Mistakes Can Fuel Creativity

How do you think about mistakes or failures? Many of us want to “get things right” and pursue excellence in creative work, but what seems like a setback, error or limitation, can often be valuable for encouraging more creative thinking and innovation. Valerie Young writes about two “mistakes” that resulted in very successful products: Post-It-Notes […]
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More Intelligence, More Creative?

How do intelligence and creative ability interact? Do we get more creative with more intelligence? Dean Keith Simonton, PhD thinks “Intelligence is purely a cognitive construct. Creativity on the other hand, I see as being much more complex.” Like other writers on creativity, he makes a distinction between “little c creativity” and “big C creativity.” […]
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Terri Levine on how to lessen anxiety

By Terri Levine : “The anxiety I am talking about is that suffered by everyday workers, going about their business in a state of stress and discomfort. This work related anxiety is persistent and causes you to worry excessively about events or activities or circumstances at work which may, or may not, even happen… but […]
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Every society needs highly sensitive people

There can be many challenges for people who are highly sensitive, including reactions from others (“Why are you so touchy?”), feeling “wrong” and with lower self-esteem in a culture that is so extroverted and high-speed, and being more vulnerable to stress (see my post Sensitive to anxiety). But there are also many strengths and values, […]
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Eric Maisel on anxiety and developing creativity

“Only a small percentage of creative people work as often or as deeply as, by all rights, they might be expected to work. “What stops them? Anxiety or some face of anxiety like doubt, worry, or fear… anxiety is the great silencer of the creative person.” Therapist and creativity coach Eric Maisel, PhD. He also […]
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Developing Creativity: Max Ehrman; Elizabeth Olsen; Julia Cameron

Many artists express ideas about developing creativity that can be helpful to other creative people. Here are a few examples. Max Ehrman From LOVE IS IN THE AEROSOL, Text by Denise Kitt, SOMA magazine. When artist Max Ehrman is not completing privately commissioned works, he is zealously spray painting the walls of start-up companies in […]
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