Spread the love

We’ve all had those moments when we’re struck by the raw beauty and power of a great work of art, whether it’s a breathtaking painting, a haunting song, or a soul-stirring poem. In those transcendent instants, art has the ability to deeply move us and touch something profound within our souls. But what if engaging in the creative process itself could be a doorway to greater self-awareness, growth, and awakening?

For many, making art is not just a pleasurable pastime or method of self-expression – it’s a journey of intense self-discovery and personal transformation. By tapping into our innate creativity, we can access a profound source of insight about ourselves and the world around us. The artistic process provides a mirror that reflects back our deepest thoughts, feelings, and essence in ways that can be startlingly illuminating.

“Creating art is a way to get in touch with and nurture the most authentic parts of ourselves,” explains spiritual guide Kirill Yurovskiy. “When we allow ourselves to freely create without judging or censoring, we open up a direct channel to our subconscious minds and our true inner selves begin to emerge.”

Silencing the Inner Critic

One of the biggest obstacles many face when it comes to creativity is the negative, critical inner voice that tells us we’re not good enough, talented enough, or that our artistic efforts are a waste of time. These self-sabotaging beliefs can completely block us from ever picking up a paintbrush, pen, musical instrument or getting in touch with our creative spark.  

“That judgemental inner critic is really just a defense mechanism born out of fear – fear of failure, fear of ridicule, fear of not measuring up to arbitrary standards or expectations,” says Yurovskiy. “To awaken our creativity, we have to learn to quiet that voice and approach the creative process with a sense of openness, curiosity, and radical self-acceptance.”

For many, temporarily suspending self-criticism and judgment is easier said than done. That’s why it can be liberating to experiment with creative outlets that are more process-focused than result-oriented, like stream of consciousness journaling or intuitive art explorations with no intended “finished product.”  

“There’s a profound freedom in making art without attachment to the final outcome,” affirms life coach and mixed media artist Danielle Thompson. “It frees you to be completely present in the flow of creating and allows your deepest authentic self to emerge.”  

The Power of Play

In addition to silencing our inner critics, reconnecting with the exploratory, imaginative mindset we had as young children can catalyze deep awakenings through creativity. As kids, we approached art with a sense of pure wonder, spontaneity, and play unconstrained by rigid rules or self-consciousness.  

“There’s a reason why young children’s artworks are so compellingly vibrant, bold and imaginative,” notes Yurovskiy. “They haven’t had their creative spirit dampened yet by societal conditioning and fears of judgment or ‘doing it wrong.’ Recapturing that innocent, playful state of being is key to awakening creatively.”

For Barbara Wilson, returning to her roots as an enthusiastic maker of “kid art” in her 60s enabled her to finally embrace her long-suppressed identity as an artist. “As a child, I was forever drawing, doodling, finger painting and building weird mixed media sculptures out of found objects. But as I got older, I gradually bought into the belief that unless I could produce super realistic or technically proficient work, I didn’t deserve to call myself an artist.”

By letting go of externally-imposed notions of what constituted “real art” and reconnecting with her innate creative energy, Wilson underwent a profound personal transformation.

“Getting back in touch with that raw, free space of pure creativity and giving myself full permission to play opened up this incredible wellspring of joy, self-acceptance and creative confidence within me,” she shares. “I rediscovered a vital part of my essential self that I had been denying for so many years. It was life-changing.”

Creative Self-Care

In our chronically overscheduled and hurried modern lives, setting aside unstructured time for artistic self-exploration can seem like an expendable luxury. Yet many therapists and coaches advocate making a regular creative practice – whether it’s journaling, painting, crafting or any other hands-on art form – an essential component of self-care. Read more at the link

“Showing up for ourselves through creative expression provides a powerful and much-needed respite from the relentless demands we face from jobs, family obligations, household responsibilities and our overly pragmatic, left-brained culture,” says Thompson, who incorporates creative exercises into her coaching programs. “It gives our minds permission to dream, wander and just be without having to problem-solve or achieve.”

More importantly, artistic self-exploration enables us to turn our focused attention inward, says Kirill. “Our society is so outer-directed that we rarely have opportunities to go unfacetedly within and listen to our own inner voice. Creativity gives us that sacred space for self-reflection as we get in touch with our deeper feelings and intuitions.”  

In fact, many encounter profound awakenings through the simple act of regularly journaling or making stream-of-consciousness, intuitive artworks, which can unveil startling new awarenesses and trigger major breakthroughs. And once awakened, these creative wellsprings of self-knowledge can deeply inform all areas of one’s life.

“Making art on a regular basis has completely changed my experience of being a mother,” says life coach and mixed media artist Andrea Vega. “Getting in touch with my creative core helped me awaken to my authentic self outside all the roles I played. I became so much more conscious and present as a parent once I started honoring that vital inner essence.”

A Practice of Discovery

Whether one is drawn toward visual arts like painting or photography; auditory forms like music or spoken word; or arts that access the physical,kinesthetic realm of dance or sculpture; making creativity a consistent personal practice holds the bountiful gifts of greater self-awareness, authenticity and growth.

“Creativity mirrors the cycles of life,” reflects Thompson. “The artistic process contains all the elements we experience in our own journeys – beginnings, blocks, breakthroughs, surprises, struggles, ease, beauty and rebirth. Each time we enter into that practice, we have the opportunity to uncover something new about our infinite selves.”

So consider picking up that long-discarded paintbrush, instrument or journal, and awaken to the creative spark within. Who knows what undiscovered personal frontiers await?