Wednesday, May 26, 2010
Beyond the Blues
All artists are crazy. We've all heard that old cliche. And within that ignorant and often mean-spirited indictment of creative personalities is a grain of truth. Crazy, of course, is not a diagnosis, and I actually take it as a compliment. Crazy--in this context anyway-- means, to me, imaginative, liberated, uninhibited, creative.
But it's also true that many creatives suffer from depression, anxiety and other psychological disorders. From Vincent Van Gogh to Virginia Woolf, from William Styron to Kurt Cobain, the list of artistic luminaries who have grappled with mental illness is a long one. Fortunately, talk therapy and the advent of effective psychiatric medications have made it easier for those suffering to find relief and learn ways to cope with their conditions. Read more in Therese Brocahrd's article:
Dealing with depression to access our creativity
While there is greater awareness and acceptance, for some people a shame or perceived stigma surrounding mental illness still remains. This can delay, impede or thwart treatment. I have had clients who resist treatment because they fear medications, and sometimes therapy, will stifle or stunt their creativity. This is largely a myth. The reverse is more likely the case. If you don't get help, your creative well may seem to dry up. Reach out and you will be pleasantly surprised at how quickly you will be able to access that pool of infinite imaginative possibilities.
If you are experiencing symptoms of depression or anxiety that persist for longer than a couple of weeks, please seek help from a mental health professional.
Drive safe Play nice. Think peace.