Mental Fitness and Creativity: Two Sides, Same Coin
As any creative will tell you, our state of mind impacts our creativity. Sometimes the impact is a positive one, like when we write or work from such an authentic place that it speaks deeply to others even when the pain shines through. At other times, our mental state totally shuts us down, leaving us mentally and emotionally stranded as surely as if we'd been dumped in the Sahara without water.
This is why learning mental fitness skills is so necessary. When we are mentally fit, we have the tools we need to meet and master all the challenges life throws our way. And this means we can ambitiously engage in our many endeavors - work, relationships, worship, creativity, and play - and reap the lasting joy and satisfaction that each can bring. Life is so short, so let's live it beautiful!
The Write Cause
If you love to write, and I certainly do, then you're in good company. Join our email list and we'll let you know when our next Writing Summit is coming up.
About those skills? Here's where you can discover how to start your own mental fitness journey with classes, programs, podcasts, and so much more!
Red Swan Studio
Sometimes I play with a pen and sometimes I play with glass. Complete with lots of bandaids, of course. Peek in on my fun and learn how you can join in.
A Little Bit About Me
I am a native Chattanoogan, though I've spent years in other locations such as in Nashville and Memphis, TN; Minneapolis, MN; Anchorage, AK; and Washington State. I completed my undergraduate education at UT Chattanooga and a Master's at Vanderbilt University. I earned a Ph.D. in child development from the University of Minnesota and a Psy.D. in clinical psychology from MN School of Professional Psychology. I have been a licensed Clinical Psychologist since 2007.
My work has not only taken me across our nation but in various settings such as private practice, intensive outpatient clinics, inpatient psychiatric wards, and in correctional facilities. Patients have included Veterans, active-duty military personnel, families and children, those who are severely and persistently mentally ill, and general outpatient patients with a wide range of concerns such as depression, anxiety, survivors of sexual abuse, trauma of all types (including PTSD), eating disorders, dissociative disorders and more. There is little I haven't dealt with from easing the minds of the worried well to conversations with serial killers. My biggest takeaway from it all may surprise you: I am blown away at the ability of humans to endure, survive, and recover from just about anything. Our spirit is truly indefatigable. We sometimes simply need a helping hand to get back up on our feet and push through the mire to discover just who we are and who we were meant to be.
Over the last decade, my work has moved to solidly focus on what I call mental fitness. I believe over-pathologizing people with illness is an injustice. Just like physical fitness, we mostly need to learn how to be mentally fit and these skills are not systematically taught. I have the boldest of missions: I aim to change the face of mental health into a focus on mental fitness, moving away from the plight of "mental disease" and into the identity of a nation comprised of mentally fit, healthy, and strong minds. In a concept, this is mental fitness.