Whether you are a life coach helping people who want to be more creative or perhaps you work with companies and organisations helping to support innovation and creativity at work – all coaches need to understand this crazy thing called creativity.
There are many myths surrounding creativity and as coaches we sometimes buy into these myths unwittingly, including things like:
- creativity is a right brain activity
- creative people are extroverts who enjoy making a mess
- creative people are risk takers who often struggle with their mental health
- creativity enjoys freedom and doesn’t like being restricted
If you don’t think these myths and beliefs don’t influence you and your clients, perhaps take some time to think about what springs to mind when you think of highly creative people, especially famous ones. Perhaps notice what you hear people say about creativity and creative people.
As a society, creativity is a highly misunderstood concept, in fact it is an invented term which has only existed since the 1950s! Hard to believe isn’t it? As you might have gathered, I have struggled with my creativity throughout my “adult” life and this has driven me to learn as much as I can about creativity – what we mean by creativity, what helps and hinders it and what we can do to support the creative process.
As coaches there are three main domains in creativity plays out:
- creativity which is core part of the coaching process
- creativity as a desired outcome for coaching itself
- creative methods used as a tool and approach to coaching
These themes are explored in detail in my forthcoming book “Coaching Creativity: transforming your practice” due to be published by Routledge this year (early summer I think!). In the book I also outline a model for coaching creativity, but hopefully you will be relieved to hear that it isn’t an acronym and no interlinking circles are involved…;) . There is a lovely forward from Bob Garvey, Coach and Professor at York St John University and contributions from Dr Dan Doherty and Sam Chittenden among others.