I had the pleasure of seeing Elizabeth Gilbert, author of “Eat, Pray, Love,” speak this weekend in Portland, Oregon while on tour promoting her new book on Creativity and Fear! In Life and Career Coaching, FEAR is a common denominator for all of my clients. Because they are walking into some kind of unknown territory and because I am pushing (inspiring) them to be more creative and open, they are often half-terrified. But don’t you know that is when the good stuff happens?
In her new book, my buddy Liz says that Creativity and Fear are conjoined twins and you don’t get to have creativity without also feeling afraid. Because any creative endeavor involves risk and possible failure, your nervous system is sending all kinds of fear signals. I have been using this metaphor for several years with coaching clients so I won’t get too mad at Liz for “stealing it” but her story goes something like this: You tell fear that you and creativity are going on a journey and fear is welcomed to come along (because remember, you can’t get rid of it) but has to stay in the back seat. It doesn’t get to hold the map, mess with the radio or make any decisions. It can shout out its scary thoughts as needed and you may or may not heed them. Imagine it is just your really anxious younger friend who you can’t quite blame for being such a nervous Nellie but you won’t allow to drive either.
If you want to know more about Liz and her approach to creativity, watch this wonderful interview of her with Marie Forleo, you won’t regret it! And if you want to come in for a life or career coaching session so we can access your creativity and help you relate better to your little friend fear, please give me a holler!