The Creative Process

By Uyen Le Kry

There is so much to say about this C word; I hardly know where to begin. These days we hear a great deal about how creativity is important for innovation. I would venture to say that it is important not just for innovation but for life, and creativity not just as in the stuff of our imaginations, but the process that gets us there.

We sense – no, we know – that something is not right with our world and are hungry for answers. We have thoughts, ideas, feelings and beliefs, not all heard out loud but there nonetheless. These thoughts, ideas, feelings and beliefs guide our actions.

We think on how we’ve developed these thoughts, ideas, feelings and beliefs. We think on how they may have helped us in your lives. We think on how they may be helping our children, or helping others.

Like you, I am a product of my family circumstances and experiences. I know there are certain things I can’t change about my life. Yet life is a constant process – a journey, which means I do have a say in how it proceeds.

We all have that power deep within us – the power to help shape a conversation, to help shape an experience, to help shape even the journey of another person.

Creativity is the shaping process. It is not necessarily something we can learn by reading a book. It is not something we can do because someone told us to. And it is not something we can dictate its course. It is just something we engage in with our true being, and what comes out depends on all the circumstances surrounding it, including environment, resources and people (our thoughts, ideas, feelings and beliefs).

Through the creative process, something will come out, and that something is what we take with us as we engage in the process again – and again – as we search for answers. The resulting mix is not anything we can pre-determine because we cannot control everything. That is the beauty of engaging ourselves in that way, because we don’t entirely know what will be revealed until we engage ourselves, and it is different from one moment to the next, from one group of people to another.

What if we were to engage in life as a continuous creative process, intentionally letting not just our logic guide our experiences and interactions with others, but also our hearts, minds and souls? We don’t have to take anything thrown by others into the mix that doesn’t jive with our inner self; but by letting ourselves and each other engage fully, openly and deliberately, and then processing what emerges and taking it to the next place, something beautiful could result – perhaps even some insights for which we have been looking.

Girls Innovate! would like to engage together with you in the creative process, starting now and throughout 2015. What comes out of it – we don’t know precisely, but we know it will likely be something beautiful.

Juliane Kowski is a Berkeley-based music therapist who works with youths, adults, families, schools and clinics to use music and art for connecting, healing, strengthening and becoming more self-aware. She has degrees in music, teaching, and music therapy, as well as many experiences in teaching and counseling. At first we asked her to do just a drum circle, but reflecting on the intensity of our lives sometimes, we thought it may be good to hear about Juliane’s experiences working with youths and families, as well. We know it’s a bit of a hike for South Bay families but, trust us, it will be worth it!

We hope you will join us.