The Peaks & Valleys of the Creative Process
The video below is from a talk given by the multi-talented singer, songwriter, record producer, and actress Lauryn Hill to high school students back in 2000 that journeys through creativity and spirituality in its themes. It’s a great talk in its entirety, if you ever want to listen, of which I’m sharing this just over 10 minute clip from. The whole 10:26 minutes is really wonderful, but I was particularly taken by what she shares in response to the question at 5:30 because it mirrored so much of what my take-aways have been recently from the skiing journey I’ve been using as a metaphor in my own life. It also speaks to why creativity at its best, is not to be rushed, as the in between phases are truly where the magick lies.
There’s no randomness to why this clip found me yesterday, and so I thought to share the alignment of that synchronicity in a blog today, as Lauryn so eloquently and simply expresses the concept I had shared in my own way in a recent blog. It feels like a supportive message to reiterate, as it speaks to the places we find ourselves descontructing and reinventing as individuals and a collective right now.
Again, the whole video is great, but if you want to skip to this part, you’ll see what I mean. The question is at 5:30 and the actual answer is around 6:00 minutes.
In those last four plus minutes she describes the creative process and how it needs to include experiences that teach you.
Given my mountain ski experiences, I especially resonate with her metaphor of life as peaks (mastership) and valleys (learning/study) – getting to the top of a mountain with mastery, but that once you’re on top you have to go down again, which is the learning or studying experience. Staying at the top of the mountain, or trying to hold onto the mastership there, will get you stuck. You can’t stay there forever and have fresh substance and depth to your creativity, so you will need to descend with trust and let go of everything you know, which brings you to the foot of another hill or mountain that you then learn how to navigate differently, ascend, master, and so on.
These are the excerpts from my blog post that her eloquence mirrored in my own way of expressing it:
Skiing has become a metaphor for so much and a guiding force for the fresh path I want to carve.
For me, growth isn’t about the climb up the mountain, but how to get down. This equates to the deconstructing process in order to rebuild. There are fears and unknowns to journey through when you are removing the comforts of what you’ve always known. The steps aren’t clear, therefore the way down is one turn at a time.
To go further asks for a total flip of perspective on progression. Rather than finding the positions of accomplishment to be defined by “higher,” they are simply new positions that might also require going “deeper.”…
I face the downhill with the same patience and presence the uphill climb involves, taking it in stride, with no pressure or time frame to fly at top speed. The snow makes the terrain a fresh journey layered over an old one, and this is how evolution looks – integrating old and new on a whole new level.
Posted on February 16, 2023, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.
Interesting video. What resonated most with me is her reminder that we need experience in order to have creativity. Enjoy your cycles of learning and mastery! 😍
Thank you for highlighting that Brad! It rings in to me too! Living colors our lives as art.
Yes, and we need experience to learn, grow, and make new choices.
You said it!! 🙌💫