- Mindfulness can be a powerful element of creativity.
- Many people have discovered mindfulness as a positive way to re-ignite their long-lost creativity.
- Mindfulness opens up our thinking to new ideas and new horizons.
I have often wondered about the connection between creativity and mindfulness. A celebrated recording artist, composer, performer, and intentional mover, Noah Aronson (noaharonson.com) creates experiences at the intersection of wellness and creativity. For 15 years, he has used an assembly of research-based practices to generate creative opportunities across several platforms. He conducts intensive courses, leads interactive workshops, and performs for a worldwide audience.
Here's what Noah has to say about creativity and mindfulness.
What is the connection between mindfulness and creativity?
This question gets to the root of everything I’m working with these days. Mindfulness, to me, is having the ability to be the observer of our experiences and developing the skills to not get tossed around by them. The difference with creativity, to me, is the addition of the expression of what we are observing and how it fuses with our lived experience. So, one could say that mindfulness can be a helpful, and perhaps even a safer, avenue for the expression of our creativity.
How can individuals reignite their creative spirit through mindfulness?
Mindfulness helps us tune in to the stimuli around us and within us. When we can learn to do so without judgment, then we can experience the wonder and mystery of the creative process. When we attempt to create art from an un-mindful place, it can easily become tainted by our minds and egos: “If I create art like this, then people will think I’m (fill in the blank) smart, cool, sexy, talented, a genius, etc.” But what many people tend to overlook is that authenticity is much more powerful!
No one has lived your experience; no one has seen the world through your eyes. When we can mindfully tap into our authentic creative expression, then we are ostensibly untouchable!
How does mindfulness help people get into a creative flow?
I think about “flow state” a lot and find that the easiest way to tap into it is by activating my breath and dropping into my body. My creative practice—which I call “The ReVoice Method”—involves standing in my studio space, with all the equipment turned on and ready to capture everything, closing my eyes, tapping into my breath, and letting my breath start to move my body where it wants to move. From there, I begin to open channels of vocal expression, creating rhythms, melodies, and harmonies that emerge from that moment.
I do not concern myself with whether it is good or bad or whether it sounds like another artist’s work. I simply express what feels good to me and let it move me.
Many people feel that their creativity has been crushed. How can mindfulness deal with that?
I am always trying to remind my audience that we are all “creatives.” Using the term “creatives” to describe one subset of the population is doing us all a disservice. We all have the capacity to tap into the creative spirit.
This doesn’t mean that everyone has to create art for a living. Although, how amazing would that be? We can all benefit from the experience of entering into creativity whether or not there’s a product at the end of it.
Is mindfulness a “super-power?”
In some ways, yes… and in some ways, it’s the easiest thing in the world. I had a meditation teacher once say, “Don’t just do something. Sit there!” I thought that was such a clever turn of phrase, but it’s true. All we really need to do is nothing. And within the nothingness exists a world of creative possibility.
I believe that Creativity is an energy that has intention: an entity that has been evolving alongside us. I believe we can be partners with Creativity. It doesn’t have a consciousness as we do. So it needs us to manifest its intentions into the being.
I believe it is the job of the artist to learn how to let ourselves be conduits for it. This takes tremendous courage and forces us to face our pain and discomfort. For the folks who have the courage to take that path, then yes, creativity through mindfulness can become a superpower.
Mindfulness sounds so “New Age.” Is it a passing fad or a lifelong endeavor?
Mindfulness is at the core of who we are as humans. Without mindfulness, we find that we are being controlled by our fears, not by our creativity. The dictators in our brains will be running the show—shielding us from threats they perceive in everyone.
We push others away and are in a constant state of frustration when our relationships, careers, and health don’t go as planned. When we try to control everything, we are always experiencing varying degrees of misery. Mindfulness, in combination with creativity, is the doorway to experiencing joy and lightness, awe and wonder, curiosity and fulfillment in every moment. It’s right there waiting for us, and we get to choose it.
Is there anything else you’d like to add?
Readers can access my new album M.O.V.E. on all streaming platforms and subscribe to my You Tube channel to see The ReVoice Method in action. "The BeMajor Podcast with Noah Aronson" airs every Wednesday beginning September 22, 2021. My live experiences invite audiences into moments of communal creativity. These experiences remind us that we are all creative, and it’s all the sweeter when we can do it together.
Thanks so much for graciously sharing your insights, Noah. Your work and your mission are, most certainly, creatively inspiring.