Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Ode to Creativity and Madness

The Worrell Gallery
After a week in beautiful Santa Fe at the Creativity and Madness Conference, I am renewed in my commitment to promote mental health/ wellness, and fight the stigma of mental illness.

I am also refreshed.  It is an inspiring place and an incredible conference. I wish you could've come with me, but maybe this month we can virtually travel together.

Take a deep breath and smell the fresh sage, the mountain air.

What do composer Sergei Rachmaninoff, artist Frida Kahlo, native american leader Crazy Horse, and entrepeneur Steve Jobs all have in common? Each were creative, outstanding in their life work, and had a diagnosible mental illness. 

Out of the all of the artistis that we studied this past week, only one- Rachmaninoff- sought treatment for symptoms of mental illness. His treatment was brief and successful in removing his writer's block, but social stigma discouraged him from continuing his therapy once his creativity returned.  Racmaninoff''s depression was debilitating. 

Our society has come a long way in the effectiveness of treatment and recognizing the value of intervention, but we have a long way to go. 

Historically, learning disabilities were considered a sign of ignorance and certain students were deemed"unteachable." Traditionally unsuccessful students Albert Einstein and Thomas Edison to name a few, inspired attention and research to assist unconventional learners.  Looking at the least restrictive environment model, many gifted, learning disabled, and gifted/LD students are now thriving with modified styles of teaching. 

This conference reminds me of the greatness that is possible within unconventional thinkers, who have needs that are often ignored. 

This month I will share insight and information from the conference. I hope you will share my enthusiasm for creativity, wellness, and appreciation of mental illness as a diversity in our culture.


  1. Can't wait to hear more about your trip. I love how this conference always inspires and recharges you!

  2. Lisa, I am glad you are home refreshed and replenished and ready to rumble for creativity and mental health awareness!

  3. Lisa, I just finished reading Love,Anthony and was significantly enlightened on the subject of autism.I'll look forward to learning more about mental disorders in your posts this month. Glad you had a great trip!

  4. So glad you had another wonderful experience in Santa Fe. I look forward to hearing about the potential within unconventional thinking!

  5. Thanks Sonia, Shel, Dee Dee and Brandi for your loyal readership and enthusiasm. A friend told me yesterday that every year I say "this was the best year EVER." Made me laugh. I do believe that every year they improve upon this conference, and every year the conference improves upon me! I hope I can effectively share this through blogging.