Is Your Art Cheap Therapy?

Is Your Art Cheap Therapy?It might sound insane, but sometimes I have no idea how I really feel about something until I start to write about it.

Writing has become a way to organise and express my thoughts. A processing mechanism where I can filter and make sense of events past and present.

I’m not a meditator

I am not a meditator as such, but to me writing feels almost meditative.

It is one of my only reprieves in a busy day of flying thoughts. My space to let it all out. A grand cathartic release and filter all in one.

If you’re a writer, maybe these words make sense to you.

But if you’re not, I hope they somehow cross the gap between writing and your creative medium of choice.

Maybe you paint to understand yourself.

Maybe you create music to process your experiences.

Maybe you design to release.

Trying to be useful

When I first started writing here on For the Creators in February of 2013, I tried to be useful. I wrote a couple of how to type posts in those early days.

Looking back on them now, they feel awfully clinical and stale. Lucky I only had a handful of people reading in those very early days!

I realise now that there was a major problem with the way in which I was writing those early posts. I was writing for you, but I wasn’t writing through me.

I wasn’t putting my own experiences or raw thoughts into those posts. It was all lost in favour of usefulness and five point lists.

Finding my voice

Is Your Art Cheap Therapy?As time went on, I found my voice and I realised that in my own experiences were the lessons I needed to share.

The lessons weren’t in some five point list post or a contrived process for getting started with a creative project. They were in the sharing of experiences, the communication of real lessons learnt. That was what was truly useful and something others could connect with.

The more my writing was based on my own real experiences, the more I really helped people. And the more it helped me too.

As I wrote through me, I started to have light bulb moments whilst crafting posts and I really started learning. Writing became a way to organise, express and understand my thoughts.

Perhaps you can relate?

An opportunity

I believe that as creators we are incredibly privileged because in doing our work we not only create something beautiful, thought provoking or even simply useful for others, but we ourselves receive something arguably far better.

Through our art we receive the opportunity to release, process and understand ourselves and our experiences Click to Tweet

A deep exploration

Every time you engage with your creative work, the opportunity is there. To express, organise and understand your thoughts with the clarity that only comes with deep exploration of pen, brush, hand or mind.

Maybe it’s cheap therapy. Maybe it’s something far more.

Whatever label you want to put on it, it’s worthwhile beyond measure.

Outside of this, anything else gained – money, accolades, fame, success – is all a bonus.

Do you create to understand yourself and your experiences? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below ☺

3 Reactions

  1. Diane

    good morning…with the new direction in your posts, there is such a sense of excitement and possibility for new explorations. Thank you so much for sharing where you are and giving your readers a chance to be shifted by it too. I love to write for the very reasons you suggest–to discover new perspectives and connections, to explore how my inner world relates to my experiences as I travel through life. It is the same with my music tho I am not yet as technically competent on my instrument so the flow isn’t as easy. My “aha” moment in reading your post is a decision to be conscious of incorporating that sense of discovery and connection inside/outside to my playing. I do experience an amazing sense of timelessness when I am in my practice room…no words really, a free floating exploration of a boundless space…different than writing…maybe the two mirror each other…two ways to travel through my creative world.

    • Michaela Cristallo

      Wonderful to hear that this post resonated with you so deeply Diane. It is an exciting time indeed and I feel so lucky to be able to share this with the community here at For the Creators.

      That connection between inside and out is such a fascinating topic, I feel I will be writing more on this in the coming months. I love how you describe that sense of timelessness. I wrote about this concept of flow in an early post here on For the Creators, back in 2013. I’m not sure if you were reading back then. Here’s a link if you’d like to check it out

  2. Stella

    Michaela, your writing has been a spark, a kickstart, and a guide to my own journey. Being true to yourself is so difficult because it forces us to examine ourselves and readjust and as you said let go of the old. You have helped me immensely along the way. I am still working with the Creative Planner, I too had to regroup and let go of things. I wish you much success which comes from within you. Thank you for your support and your encouragement !

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