Community//

Creativity as a Tool for Alignment

The bridge between self-knowledge and self-expression.

The Thrive Global Community welcomes voices from many spheres. We publish pieces written by outside contributors with a wide range of opinions, which don’t necessarily reflect our own. Community stories are not commissioned by our editorial team, and though they are reviewed for adherence to our guidelines, they are submitted in their final form to our open platform. Learn more or join us as a community member!

Creativity is the unifying thread woven into the tapestry of humanity. It entwines warmth and vitality into the oftentimes frigid reality of our lives. It may appear as a slab of unshaped clay and untapped potential, or as the bold strokes on the blank canvases of a new day. Regardless of its frame or form, creativity and its vivid hues are ever-present (and necessary) in our-selves and our world.

Life embeds itself into our DNA and becomes an intrinsic source of inspiration. Our bodies naturally house the potential to harmonize this energy and the corresponding emotions into outward movement and action. Each of us has the ability to bridge our inner and outer worlds when we align our self-knowledge with our self-expression, but this alignment requires us to cultivate new qualities, beliefs, and behaviors.

Awareness is one of the most important steps in acknowledging where we may be aligned or misaligned with our Core Self. We are each made up of limiting and expansive beliefs, and inherited and chosen core values. The Core Self is always that which is grounded upon expansion and consciousness. The presence of conflicting emotions creates a state of tension and duality in who we are, who we want to be, and how we show up in our lives. Awareness presents us with the crucial skill of recognizing where we are not living in integrity, or in alignment with the values belonging to our Core Self. Without this awareness, the necessary adjustments cannot be made to resolve internal tension and move beyond what is limiting.

Making these adjustments calls on compassion and confidence. We must offer compassion when observing dissonance, and we must develop confidence to show up in a new way. When we allow ourselves to do this with vulnerability and consistency, we are giving ourselves the permission to be seen in our essential nature. As a result, a desire to source external belonging is frequently replaced by a deep-seated feeling of internal belonging. This is a natural extension of awareness and authenticity, as well as the gateway to genuine self-acceptance. In this place, light and darkness are free to coexist. The Creative Self is fueled by both and capable of expressing each shade without bias.

Courage empowers us to witness and hold the shadowed parts of ourselves that we may strive to ignore. These shadows evoke the most charged and avoided emotions, such as shame, fear, guilt, and anger. When we label any feeling or sensation as “bad” or “scary”, we overlook it as an intrinsic part of who we are. When we judge any emotion as good or bad, we are unconsciously labeling ourselves with it. Labeling creates internal fragmentation and further perpetuates internal conflict and tension. To create awareness around our emotions and accept everything we find is the greatest act of courage in our current society. There is bravery in expressing the entire spectrum of emotions, and alignment is often what we experience as a result.

When we simply think of emotions as an internal representation of what we are experiencing in any given moment, our Creative Self will instinctively find avenues for growth, transformation, and truth. This is the power of using creative expression as a tool for touching and channeling our emotions in healthy, productive ways. Sketching is one such way. Anger can be experienced as bold, frenetic, and hardened lines on a page, instead of locking it away or projecting it as toxic behavior. Shame can be experienced as soft, dotted lines, and negative spaces within a sketch, instead of withdrawing or turning to silence.

There are many ways to creatively express how we feel: painting, dancing, singing, writing, music, cooking, sewing, and so on. Each one builds on awareness, authenticity, self-acceptance, and courage to create a bridge between our internal and external worlds. When we offer ourselves an unfettered view of the light and darkness, of our entire emotional experience, we gain a greater perspective. Similarly, plunging into a blank page or blank slate will gift us with a deepened understanding of who we are, who we want to be, and how we can better show up in alignment with our Core Selves.

Share your comments below. Please read our commenting guidelines before posting. If you have a concern about a comment, report it here.

You might also like...

Community//

Creativity at Work

by Kerry Campbell
Community//

Social Impact Heroes: How Vans President Doug Palladini is helping to inspire creativity and entrepreneurship in young people across the world

by Yitzi Weiner
Community//

The Creativity Machine and GLOBAL BURNOUT

by Phillip E. Romero MD

Sign up for the Thrive Global newsletter

Will be used in accordance with our privacy policy.

Thrive Global
People look for retreats for themselves, in the country, by the coast, or in the hills . . . There is nowhere that a person can find a more peaceful and trouble-free retreat than in his own mind. . . . So constantly give yourself this retreat, and renew yourself.

- MARCUS AURELIUS

We use cookies on our site to give you the best experience possible. By continuing to browse the site, you agree to this use. For more information on how we use cookies, see our Privacy Policy.