the sally sisson blog

April 10, 2010

Overcoming Creative Block (part 3): Elizabeth Gilbert on nurturing creativity

ElizabethTED Talk: Nurturing creativity

I love this video clip. I watched it a year ago and just watched it again—twice in two days. As the TED intro says, it’s surprisingly moving—on many levels.

It covers ego, insecurity, the creative process, mental instability, fear of failure, perfectionism, the Ancient Greeks and Tom Waits.

It’s for writers, artists, anyone who’s anguished over, as Gilbert puts it, “the utterly maddening capriciousness of the creative process.”

The author of Eat, Pray, Love turns the whole notion of creative genius on its head and ponders the use of ancient muses to create distance between the person and the product. In the end, she comes around to a common sense approach to the entire process and lauds the value of  “just showing up.”

In other words, lightening doesn’t have to strike every time you type a sentence.

“Don’t be daunted, just do your job.” That’s her closing line.

Good advice, indeed.