I read this article the other day.....yeah Facebook. But it resonated with me so much I sent it to Big Gazza and when he was done reading he just looked at me and laughed. "That explains so much, its exactly you" he said. So I, in typical style pondered on this for a week or so and then decided to write a post. So here it is.
Note: I have edited, cut & paste, manipulated the article to suit my own purposes and I have no reference sorry.
Apparently it has been proven that 'highly' (I'm not suggesting that I am in the highly category) creative people’s brains work quite differently than other brains. That special brain wiring that can create such wonderful art, music, and writing can often lead to strain in a relationship, because of those differences. This translates as a good old fashion barny between Gazza and I when we are working on a building project together. We have discovered, over time, that if I draw it, he can build it.
If you’ve ever loved a highly creative person, you know that it can seem like they live in their own little word at times, and that thought isn’t far from the truth. Here are some things to keep in mind when you are in love with a highly creative person:
1. Their Minds Don’t Slow Down The highly creative mind is one that is running at full speed all the time. Although it can be a source of crazy, spontaneous fun – it can also be a burden. Highly creative people rarely keep normal sleep cycles, and are often prone to bouncing from one task to another throughout the day. It can be exhausting to try to keep up. Sleeeeeep, I can think of so many times when I have gone to bed with a problem and in the morning woken up with the solution. I had dreamt about it and my subconscious mind has solved it and then retained the information for me to share with Gazza in the morning. He has even woken up in the morning and said to me, "So, what's the answer?" and I have been able to tell him. He just shakes his head. I remember a time very clearly when Kez was just a baby. Her nursery was a large room with a picture rail and dado board running around the walls. I couldn't afford to buy a cupboard for her clothes. But overnight I dreamt a solution of placing two triangle shaped boards into the corner of the room and they would attach to the running boards and a curtain in front. Sorted! Bouncing from one task to another sounds sporadic and out of control. I'm the type of person who has a hundred balls in the air at once. I have projects happening, art work in progress and always something on the go. I have tried to uncomplicate my life. And sometimes there is too much going on. But un-complicating is hard for me and I inevitably clutter it up again. I live in a whirlwind. Its about cramming as much into my life as I can.
2. They are Cyclical The flow of creativity is a cycle, full of highs and lows. Some people may consider this “manic” behavior, but in reality, it is just how the creative process works. Keep this in mind as your partner goes through these natural ebbs and flows. The low periods aren’t permanent. There have certainly been a lot of ups and downs. Life is a rollercoaster. I say to Gazza often "Watch me for the changes and try to keep up." He does a pretty good job of both. There have been plenty of times when I have needed to recalibrate, have thrown artworks against a wall, fallen face first in the mud, panicked, spent days unmoving on the lounge, danced like a crazy person, held my hands in the air and whooped as life has sent me soaring towards the next exciting idea or experience and I try as hard as I can to take those who want to, along for the ride.
3. They Need Time Alone Creative minds need air to breathe. Whether it is their own little work space or an escape to somewhere quiet, they need a time and place to be alone with their thoughts. Some people are inclined to think that if nothing is being said that there is something wrong, but with creative people that is not the case. They are just working within their own head. Oh boy is this me! While I crave interaction and I am energised by people and love the idea of being social and having fun times with people. I fiercely hold on to my own time. I can disappear, if needed or by choice, into my own thoughts and scroll mentally through a list of thoughts, issues, challenges, new ideas, memories, stones left unturned and boxes that need unpacking. I can dream, scheme and scream in my own mind and I can do this when I am alone, or alone in a crowd of thousands. Its easy to disappear and ruminate. And I can get into trouble for it too. Whoops.
4. They are Intensely Focused
When a creative person is on task, they are fiercely intense. The change from being scatter-brained to hyper-focused can be difficult to deal with, so just understand that it is how their brains work. Don’t get frustrated. Hmmm, I don't feel like I am scatter-brained or chasing butterflies or shiny objects that catch my attention. But I can skip from activity to activity or idea to idea. Sometimes I can get in my own way and struggle with getting started. But, when the light turns green, then I am locked on. It is intense to the point of obsession and the fixation can sometimes get me into trouble. An example of this is the little 86 parked in the garage. The little orange car is the product of a solid year of fixation, obsession and intensity. I tried to fight it, but one day I just drove to the car yard and bought the car. With time and perhaps age and a little maturity, I have managed to recognise when I am fixating on something and can temper it (sometimes). So my latest obsession is about extending the house. Yes, my obsessions can get very expensive.
5. Emotions Run Deeper Creative people feel everything on a deeper level. What doesn’t seem like a big deal to you, can be crushing to them. It’s that same passion that goes into whatever they create that drives them to love you, so understand that with the good – comes the bad. I think over time and with maturity I have been able to keep my emotions on a fairly steady keel. But I can look back over my shoulder and remember times when I have been engulfed by emotion. Most prominent a jaw operation that went terribly wrong. Feeling trampled and helpless as the news rolled over me that the op had left me worse off than prior. The helplessness and blackness carried around from about 12years of age about my appearance. But also of note, the release of black energy when I came to terms about what I couldn't change or control. Freedom.
6. They Speak in Stories Creative people often express themselves in experiences, instead of just saying what they want to say. It is a way of sharing themselves that personifies who they are. At times, it can be difficult to figure out what a creative person is saying, so don’t be afraid to read between the lines. Guilty! Yes I talk in stories, I can go out and around the block and then bring it all back again to make my point. In conflict I often 'acknowledge' others feelings and start my own sentences with 'I feel.' Sometimes, ok often, others can hear this and wonder what the hell I am talking about. Meli was someone who struggled often with this. I found it hard to just say what I wanted to say straight up. I work hard on being a straight shooter, but often it can leave Gaz pulling what little hair he has left OUT!
7. They Battle with Themselves Being creative can be a serious internal struggle. Motivation, enthusiasm, direction, and drive can all be issues for creative people. Some days it is hard for them just to get out of bed, and other days you can’t get them to slow down. Be patient in the lulls, because there is usually a burst of activity right around the corner. As I said... life is a roller coaster. But there have been days when I have not moved off the couch. I call it 'The Little Black Cloud.' Its hard for me to see it closing in and it can hang around for quite a while. Its a work in progress that one.
8. Intuition is Important Creative people, because of their intense emotional tendencies, tend to rely on intuition over logic. They go with their gut. Some people consider this to be more on the “impulsive” end of the spectrum. The creative mind doesn’t rely on logic to make a decision, it relies on experience and passion. Case in point is the little car, a year long obsession and then an impulsive weekend drive to the caryard. But, I would never change the way I am driven by passion. Give me a moment of passion, than a lifetime of nothing at all. Give me life real, raw and unedited. Sometimes it hurts like hell, sure. But I want to experience every moment with intensity and love.
9. They Struggle with Confidence
When people create, especially for a living, they are always struggling with acceptance. That is art. They have to wear their hearts on their sleeves, and so they always question whether or not what they are producing is good enough. Being supportive is the key to loving a creative person. I could never sell my own work. I have given away so many artworks. The only way I could work was to work for someone who would then put a price (plus his cut) on my work. I hid behind the safety of Bron's negotiating and sale ability. I never wanted to work to a brief and climb into someone's head and try and see what they want me to paint. I'd much rather paint something and then if you like it, then you can offer me a price. Or you can take it if you like it. Easy.
10. Growing Up is Hard to Do Creative people are almost always children at heart. That care-free nature can seem immature and impetuous – but it is all part of the deal. Understand that the aspects of their creative brains that you love are the same ones that make them somewhat irresponsible when it comes to being an adult. oh I just don't like this growing up business. But who does? I enjoy wistful. I enjoy dreaming of flying and endless possibilities. I love horses and dreams. I don't want to make decisions, pay bills, plan for retirement, learn about super. ahhhhhhhhh I never want to grow up!