Creative entitlement: You are allowed to be here

Most things have already been done – but they have not yet been done by you.

Most things have already been done – but they have not yet been done by you.

If you’re interested in creativity, it is relatively safe to assume that Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way has been recommended to you at some stage. Let me now also recommend Elizabeth Gilbert’s Big Magic. She believes that the essential ingredients for creativity are courage, enchantment, permission, persistence and trust:

To live a creative life means having courage. It means living a life that is driven more by curiosity than by fear. But keep in mind that creativity always triggers fear because creativity implies uncertain outcome, which is exactly what fear hates.

The creative process is both magical and magic. Ideas “walk” among us and are available to everybody that are willing and able to help those ideas come to “life”, as it were.

“You do not need anybody’s permission to live a creative life.”

Persistence: Learning how to endure disappointments and frustration is part of the creative person’s process. Holding yourself together when things aren’t going as well as you would have liked, that is where the real work lies.

Trust that the work wants to be made, and it wants to be made through you.

Something else that resonated with me was the admonition that “eventually you will have to do the work by yourself” and that “it is ultimately entirely up to you.” You could have the best training, the best supplies or not. Still, you have to do the work.

And for those battling with nasty negative self-talk, Gilbert believes that creative entitlement is the cure. Creative entitlement, or what the poet David Whyte calls “the arrogance of belonging”, is the simple belief that you are allowed to be here (because you were born, after all). And because you’re allowed to be here, you’re therefore allowed to have a voice and a vision of your own.

I found Big Magic to be inspirational in a straight-forward practical way without sugar-coating.


8 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. beingmepresently
    Nov 11, 2015 @ 13:13:51

    I have just finished reading ‘The Artist’s Way’ and hope to start putting some of it into practise. As a child I was very creative and I would like to be that way again, but somehow life has got in the way. Thank you for another recommendation. I will take a look at it. X


  2. Trackback: Love thy neighbour… | Being Me Presently
  3. Mary Lou
    Nov 11, 2015 @ 16:27:57

    Enjoyed reading this! “beingmepresently” recommended your site! I’m glad I clicked on the link! 🙂


  4. Fico
    Nov 11, 2015 @ 17:04:12

    Thanks for beingmepresently for sharing your blog, and find this great read. I am in the middle of a career transition, and I am struggling to find out what I want to do. I started to draw in 2013 and it’s been an on again, off again thing. My current-soon-to-be-done job has suck the soul out of me, but I often feel good when I do things, in a creative matter. Whether it is editing videos for my YouTube channel, or posting on the blogs, or drawing; I find that it is a pleasant challenge. And it can definitely be scary indeed.


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  8. mulchandmorecrafts
    Nov 12, 2015 @ 21:04:35

    led to you by BeingmePresently, glad to find more inspiration for the creative life style we have chosen to follow.


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