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Nurturing Inspiration and Creativity
Categories: Innovation

Elizabeth Gilbert, author of “Eat, Pray, Love” spoke on Nurturing Creativity at the TED (Technology, Entertainment, Design) Conference. See the whole talk at http://www.ted.com/talks/elizabeth_gilbert_on_genius.html. Below are the excerpts I thought were good food for thought on how you can overcome your demons to nurture your creative self.

I want to know: What do you see as the biggest barriers to creativity?

Gilbert says that after she wrote the bestseller, people treated her like she was doomed and all the time ask her “Aren’t you afraid — aren’t you afraid you’re never going to be able to top that?” And when she was a teenager and wanted to be a writer, people would say, “Aren’t you afraid you’re never going to have any success? Aren’t you afraid the humiliation of rejection will kill you?”

While she admits that she’s been afraid, she questions this strange reaction from people, and asks why her Dad, a Chemical Engineer, was never asked if he was afraid to be a Chemical Engineer, and asked about “chemical engineering block.”

Posted by Kathy Sandler on Monday, October 19, 2009 at 3:47 PM

She talks about meeting poet Ruth Stone, who’s now in her 90s. She grew up in rural Virginia, and out in the fields, she said she would feel and hear a poem coming at her from over the landscape. It was like a thunderous train of air. She had only one thing to do at that point, and that was to, in her words, “run like hell.” And she would run like hell to the house and she would be getting chased by this poem, and she had to get to a piece of paper and a pencil fast enough so that when it thundered through her, she could collect it and grab it on the page.

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