Dr. Deborah Brazeal

Dr. Deborah Brazeal

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Adversity and Creativity—Replace Surviving with Thriving

If we live long enough, we find adversity in our lives or maybe adversity finds us, and usually when we are least prepared for such an adventure. If adversity or extreme circumstances have laid your soul bare, there is good news, a silver lining in an otherwise darkened sky.

Research tells us that adversity is related to creativity, both in breadth of creativity, meaning across multiple facets in life, as well heightened creativity skills. This is true only if we understand how to manage the adverse event. When we are successful, post-traumatic growth will enable us to flourish and this growth acts as a conduit for creativity.

Post-traumatic growth is an intentional process that begins with self-reflection and daily journaling, culminating in authentic behavioral and attitudinal changes. Successfully negotiating the transition brings about profound discoveries such as:

  1. Toxic relationships are more readily identified and began to fall away.
  2. Hidden strengths come alive as we live out our recently illuminated personal resilience and grit.
  3. A newfound philosophy and purpose become our driving forces and push us to greater social awareness and a need to “give back.”
  4. A greater appreciation of life is understood and cherished.
  5. Spirituality in some form or context brings a grounding and purpose to our existence.

If you are currently experiencing trauma or its after-effects, know there is hope is for a richer, more fulfilling life. In fact, if you don’t have adversity, you don’t have a life story. You will learn to live and love more deeply and with greater compassion and awareness than ever before. You can thrive and not just survive!

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