Creativity and the Feminine Cycle

By June 6, 2013Creativity

When I think of the act of creating something, I think about it like an inherently feminine type of process. Think about these metaphors for a moment:

  • I’m gestating ideas
  • I’m giving birth to this business
  • This product is my baby
  • I’m nurturing my creativity
  • I’m going to found a startup incubator
  • It’s baking in the oven (possibly a reference to “bun in the oven“)

Now, of course I’m not saying that men are not as creative as women or that it’s a character trait. We’re all born creative and we all have facets of ourselves that are masculine and feminine.

What I would like to briefly explore today, however, is how a woman can attune herself to the creative process in a more organic way so that fits with her natural cycles and all the ups and downs and ebbs and flows that come with it.

One of the biggest issues with the culture we live in is that we’re always expected to be “on”. This is highly detrimental to creativity because it doesn’t give us the space we need to reflect and create. If you look past the tech world, the past decade there haven’t been many cultural shifts catalyzed by creations like art, music, the written word, and design. Being constantly on is hard and stressful on everyone, but I believe it can especially be hard on a woman because there are certain moments when it’s just more difficult to be in this “on” state.

When a woman is going through menstruation, due to hormonal shifts,  it is the time when her left and right brain hemispheres are most actively in congruence with one another. Since creativity has so much to do with connecting different types of ideas, this might be a match made in heaven for birthing new things. It seems that neuroscience has caught up with what many ancient traditions have already known!

This time is perfect for daydreaming, a little downtime, scheming, connecting dots, and creating art,  but it’s not great for things that need a lot of heavy-duty action or communication.

I know I find this true in myself. I especially dislike talking on the phone a few of those days. I feel a little cloudy-headed for proper communication and if I’m honest, there aren’t many things I’d rather do than go sit in the park with my pen and DUO and daydream. With chocolate.

It makes me wonder if there are certain other moments when we can more finely tune our creative process to our own natural ebbs and flow.  I’d personally like to learn how to better listen to myself and embrace the natural cycle more instead of pushing and fighting it.

How about you? Have you noticed your creative endeavors being influenced by cycles?

Photography by Naomi Niles


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