Sharing the thinking, feelings and actions of one project to create a series of contemporary mandalas

Creative thinking is not all about getting ideas 

 It's actually about being able to shift between two very opposite ways of thinking. 

Generating ideas uses explorative thinking so that we stay open to creating many possibilities. This is called Divergent Thinking. But without a second kind of thinking, called Convergent Thinking, we would never be able to pick the best idea.

Trouble is it's easy to get stuck in one mode of thinking or another. Staying in divergent thinking puts off decision making, while staying in convergent thinking can mean you can't get beyond your first idea!

Becoming MORE MINDFUL during creativity CAN help us to TAKE RISKS 

To create anything unique or different we must go to the edge of all we know. Most people are uncomfortable with not-knowing as being confused can feel scary and just plain wrong.

Understanding that not-knowing and confusion is not just a likely part of creativity but a pre-requisite to it can help us be more resilient during that 'wrong' feeling. 

Curbing the 'inner critic' and developing a more 'supportive voice' when we experience this essential confusion is one way to help us navigate our edge, wherever that may be.


an honest picture of creativity

The full spectrum of creative feelings:  Being mindful of ‘the blues’ encourages a healthier practice.

The full spectrum of creative feelings: Being mindful of ‘the blues’ encourages a healthier practice.

Experiencing creativity only through viewing final works of art, design, music, dance, theatre etc. can perpetuate unhelpful myths about creativity and who is creative.

This site shares both the challenging aspects of my process (the confusion, anxiety and self doubt) and the positive experiences (the certainty, trust and joy) in order to present a more honest and holistic picture of what creation entails. The message being that when we are stuck in the blue/the challenging phases (see image) we are not, not creative but engaged in an essential part of the process of discovery. Becoming more mindful while navigating though ‘the blue’ can help build healthy strategies to keep creatives well.

This infographic was developed from the notes I kept about how I felt throughout this 11 month project.