Cameron Murdoch: Living with Creative Resilience
Wow, hasn’t it been a very surreal and challenging 2020? It is definitely not how I foresaw the year unrolling. However, I do feel like I have been in training for these types of scenarios and challenges all my life.
Let me introduce myself to this amazing international group - The Gay Coaches Alliance, which I joined in June.
I am Cameron Murdoch, a Creative Resilience Coach from Edinburgh, Scotland.
Throughout my life I have experienced a variety of different challenges. These range from child abuse, to a stroke, to multiple cancers, paralysis as well as being what seemed like the only gay in the village growing up. On the flip side, I have my creativity, my training as a concert pianist, experience as a teacher, motivational speaker, educational director, and jewelery designer. Together, this has all brought me to realise the critical benefits of harmonising creative practices and thinking, with the imperative survival skill of resilience.
Therefore, it is no wonder that I think creative resilience is our most important resource. It is key to helping us thrive personally and professionally during times of crisis, change & transition. This is why I have joined them both together to create my coaching practice.
Here are some of the benefits of learning, developing, and living with Creative Resilience:
1. Develop a sense of optimism
Resilient people face difficult situations realistically yet find ways to be optimistic.
Having gone through a plethora of life changing events, and harnessing my rather wicked sense of humour, I have now come to accept all the challenges in my life as gifts. Gifts that have made me think, reflect, grow, learn, appreciate, and create a happier, stronger, and more content me.
2. Find meaning and purpose even in the dark times
We often look at exceptionally challenging and life-threatening situations as negative, destructive, and painful. And yes, they can be. However, I have discovered many times over, that out of the darkness can come a beautiful shining rainbow. I have discovered that meaning and purpose are found in every moment of living, suffering and even as we approach death. Having tangoed with cancer during the last 12 years I am no longer scared of dying, but I am rather scared of having never lived.
3. Re-frame your mindset
In times of turbulence, it is helpful to focus on what is truly in our power to control, rather than on future events that may never happen. That is because the more time we spend in the past or in our heads, the less time we enjoy the present or our soon to be created future.
As Albert Einstein wisely said:
"Out of clutter, find Simplicity. From discord, find Harmony. In the middle of difficulty lies Opportunity."
Finding opportunity takes imagination and the ability to re-frame perspectives.
4. Express yourself creatively
When my clients tell me about times of changes or difficulty, I ask what they could do differently to nurture themselves. Creativity is always at the top of the list, along with getting enough sleep, exercise, eating healthily and being with loved ones.
Creative expression has the power to heal emotions and nurture the soul. When we enter the flow states of complete absorption in a creative process, we open our awareness to new perceptions, and new perspectives.
Creativity is something you can control. When you take time out of your daily life to create, you shift your field of attention into something generative, life affirming, unexpected, positive, healing and enriching.
Resilient people are also masters of innovation and resourcefulness. Sometimes, they can create something from what might appear to be nothing. They have the capacity to improvise and to create bricolage: creative problem-solving using a variety of materials that happen to be available.
Remember the 80’s TV series The A-Team? They could manage to turn a drainpipe into a rocket launcher! Now that’s improvisation at its best.
Therefore, there is an enormous, empowering, and beautiful synergy that manifests from combining creativity, resilience, coaching, determination, authenticity, and hope.
Creative Resilience truly is transformational and will increasingly become one of the most important and sought-after skills in the next few years.
Hope you are all keeping well and safe.
Get in touch to say hi or to find out more.