Why Being Creative is Dangerous?

October 18, 2013

I mean dangerous to your personal life, to intimacy.

Study the biographies of great artists in all fields. Many have had more than one divorce. Some never marry. Or never remarry. Some live a bohemian life, moving from one relationship to another without any depth or intimacy. Some find love in the bosom of prostitutes.

And the same appears to be true for great entrepreneurs or innovators. The common denominator being: creativity.

Now, why are being creative and being intimate incompatible?

Because energy is fixed. And being creative requires lots and lots of energy. Little if any is left for interpersonal relations; marriage requires work. Intimacy is not free; it takes energy to maintain it.

This illumination explains to me why Buddha had to leave his family, his wife, children everything to seek enlightenment. It is apparently not easy to be enlightened, trying to maintain peaceful relations with a spouse.

Most of the calories we consume are for the brain to function, and when we are creative we require a great many extra calories. We need energy. It is not strange after a day of creating anything, not just artistic creations but anything new, that we are exhausted. More tired than if we had been digging ditches.

To be creative as an artist, as an entrepreneur, as an innovator, as a political leader, you need a supportive, understanding and non demanding spouse. You need peace and quiet and the least stressful environment. It is not surprising that artists are accused of being narcissistic.

They need total support, and they insist the world around them conform to their wishes, so that all their energy can be dedicated to their creative pursuits…whatever form they may take.

Not many spouses are willing to put up with it.

So the price of being creative, a leader, an entrepreneur or a true, fine artist may come at a high personal cost. It often leads to problems with intimacy, and to a narrowing down of friendships.

Apparently nothing comes free. To create something new, you have to give up something else.Sincerely,Dr. Ichak Kalderon Adizes

Written by
Dr. Ichak Adizes