Yoga Well-being: How to Embody Creativity

Painting of woman sitting in yoga position with her hands in the air. Creativity concept.

Article At A Glance

​Each and every one of us needs to embody creativity. Take the creativity challenge, learn what it means in your life, and share it with others who support you.

Creativity is seeing what others see and thinking what no one else ever thought.” 

– Albert Einstein.

Creativity is defined as an experience where something new and unique is formed. It might be an idea, a piece of art, a recipe, or trying out a new self-care routine. That’s the definition but the process of how you manifest your something new is a journey. It’s what takes you from the spark of inspiration to your final result. And that process can be messy, frustrating, soul-filling, exhausting, exciting, complex and self-actualizing. Can we actually embody creativity?

Your creative process and your creation are like your fingerprint. It’s going to be different from anyone else’s because the spark that sets off your process is filtered through your unique perspective, your talent, your experiences and your skills. I think that’s what Einstein meant by his quote. 

Turns out creativity is an essential part of being human. According to Psychology Today, being creative fosters resilience, sparks joy, and provides opportunities for self-actualization.  Therefore, it’s important to your wellbeing to figure out the role of creativity in your life.

How Do We Embody Creativity? 

Group Of Mature Female Friends On Outdoor Yoga Retreat Walking Along Path Through Campsite. Concept of Creativity in movement and community.

I embody creativity in two ways, movement and words. I love to move—walking, creating new sequences for my yoga classes and dancing like no one is watching or even if someone is. And writing is my creative heart. I write fiction and personal growth non-fiction for mainstream audiences.

People who embody creativity share some important traits and habits. According to the research, creative people balance intense energy with quiet rest, playfulness with discipline, fantasy with reality, and passion with objectivity. They are curious and more open to new ideas and experiences. And yes, some people do seem to be more creative than others. This is said to be due to three factors; brain, personality, and life experience.

Yoga Benefits: Creativity and the Brain 

Concept of nuturing the brain to embody creativity and innovation.

Science points to three brain networks that influence and produce creative thought. And of course, they work together and influence each other.

  • The default mode network is activated when the brain is in a relaxed state of awareness, daydreaming, remembering, or planning. This network helps generate ideas.
  • The executive control network helps with the ability to pay attention and solve problems. Then it evaluates and moves the results forward. 
  • The salience network is focused on communication and self-awareness. It identifies which ideas are relevant and important.

Creativity and Personality

In terms of personality, ask yourself:

  • How open am I to new ideas, experiences, and people who are different from me? 
  • Do I prefer regular, never-changing routines or change and novelty? 

Openness, change, and novelty are said to help the brain forge new connections and perhaps activate the brain networks that encourage creativity.

How Life Experience Influences Your Ability to Embody Creativity

Group Of Mature Men And Women In Class At Outdoor Yoga Retreat Sitting Circle Meditating concept of nuturing or embodying creativity.

And, of course, your life experience will also influence your creativity. If your creative impulses were encouraged by your family, friends, and life experiences, you are fortunate.  If that is not true for you, but you keep an internal spark of self-awareness and resilience around you, you will be able to persevere, protect and allow your creativity to flourish in spite of any challenges.

Once you find your unique style of creativity, you will need to guard against those who would negate, oppose or stifle it.  

Yoga Wisdom: Creative Resilience and Embodiment

Yoga breathing INHALE EXHALE sign at fitness class on lightbox as inspirational message.

The first time I faced this was in the third grade.  The teacher told us a story about a princess who loved a handsome commoner. Her father, the king, disapproved and had her lover imprisoned to await trial in the public colosseum. When the day came, the young man stood in the center. On either side of him were two doors. Behind one was a tiger who would kill him. Behind the other was a woman he would be forced to marry. The princess was told she would decide his fate. Either way, she would lose him. The young man looked at the princess. She pointed to the door on the right. The story leaves the ending to the reader: “And so I leave it with all of you: Which came out of the opened door – the lady, or the tiger?”

Our assignment was to choose. Several of my classmates chose the lady; others chose the tiger.  

I let my creative flag fly and said she chose the door with the tiger, but as the tiger rushed to kill her lover, the princess pulled a dagger from her cape and plunged it into her heart so they would be together in heaven. I thought my ending was creative. My teacher didn’t. She was a former nun and read me the riot act about suicide, an unforgivable sin resulting in an eternity in hell. I was shocked and surprised by her reaction, but because of my internal spark of self-awareness and resilience, I was not crushed. 

How to Embody Creativity

If you are already in tune with your creativity and how it flows through your life, you are fortunate. Research tells us that creativity is a skill. It can be learned. It’s applying what you know and experience in a different way. Encourage your creative spark to burn brightly by finding the subject, ideas, or issue that “floats your boat” and brings you joy. Or find the courage to change your normal routine, step outside of your comfort zone, and pay attention to the present moment.

Embodying Creativity: A Yogic Practice

Open book with fantastic levitation glowing colorful flowers splash on white background, beautiful, World book day, knowledge and creativity concept, embodying creativity and innovation.

Understanding your personal way of being creative will go a long way to helping you find clarity, contentment, and resilience in the complicated world we all share. Here is a practice to try. It’s called “What Might Happen If …”

What might happen if … 

  • Dancing leaves you feeling energized, and you sign up to learn ballet, hip-hop, etc. 
  • You love art and register for a painting, sculpture class, or art-history class.
  • You’ve thought about trying meditation, so you set aside 5 minutes a day to pick a technique and try it out.
  • Music moves you, so you learn to play an instrument.
  • You’re a foodie, so you take a cooking class.
  • You set your alarm to go off a half hour earlier than usual and go for a walk.
  • You love playing games—card, board, electronic, etc.—and decide to make up one of your own.

Now it’s your turn to fill in the blank

  • I like/love __________________.
  • What Might Happen if I __________________.

​Each and every one of us needs to embody creativity. Take the creativity challenge, learn what it means in your life, and share it with others who support you. 

Reprinted with permission from
Beth Gibbs, MA, C-IAYT, Writer and Yoga Therapist

Beth Gibbs, MA, is a faculty member at the Kripalu School of Integrative Yoga Therapy. She holds a master’s degree in Yoga Therapy and Mind/Body Health from Lesley University in Cambridge, MA. She is the author of Soul Food, Life-Affirming Stories Served with Side Dishes and Just Desserts, Enlighten Up! Finding Clarity, Contentment, and Resilience in a Complicated World and Ogi Bogi, The Elephant Yogi, a therapeutic yoga book for children. Beth is an experienced workshop leader and public speaker. She blogs at

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