Creativity 101, Tuesday 6/10/14: The Link Between Creativity and Self Esteem

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Being creative involves an attitude of receptivity and self acceptance.

Whenever you give rise to a thought, almost straight after, an element of judgment sometimes comes in. ‘Good’ or ‘bad’, ‘right’ or ‘wrong’, ‘nice’ or ‘horrible’.

Sometimes this process is so quick you don’t even notice the space between the thought that comes up and the judgments that follow. You might not even be aware of the thoughts themselves.

RECOMMENDED READING: Making the Most of Today: Daily Readings for Young People on Self-Awareness, Creativity, and Self-Esteem

The first book of daily readings for all kids guides young people through a whole year of positive thinking and practical lifeskills.

Each reading addresses an issue important to adolescents and teens—making choices and making friends, laughter and learning, feelings and families. Inspiring quotations, brief essays, and affirmations encourage kids to think more deeply about themselves and their world; to take positive actions and make positive changes; and to grow in self-esteem and emotional health—the keys to making the most of every day.

What do creativity and self-esteem have to do with bullying prevention? A lot. Creativity and self-esteem are directly linked. They’re both essential for problem-solving. And bullying prevention is all about solving problems – from pre-school to the workplace.

Targets of bullying suffer from low self-esteem more frequently than bullies themselves. If you want to inoculate a child against bullying, boosting their self-esteem through creative expression may help. In her blog, May Bleeker talks about some of the strengths creativity builds:

  • The ability to quiet your inner critic. This also builds self-esteem.
  • Self-acceptance. As Bleeker writes: “If you never let yourself emerge with any spontaneity, there can be no genuine acceptance of yourself.” Accepting yourself, even some of your quirkier or less capable parts, is a major step toward accepting and understanding others.
  • Perseverance in the face of “failure” or “mistakes.” In the creative process, things that look like “failures” can be the breakthroughs that lead to success. Creative people, and those with higher self-esteem, will work longer to solve a problem.


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