Rollo May

The Courage to Create

“We express our being by creating.”

This 1975 work, The Courage to Create, is a seminal study of the debilitating aspects of fear.

Rollo May (1909-1994) was an American existential psychologist. He practiced a philosophical method of therapy based on understandings of existence. His writing is complex yet accessible.

Rollo argues that creativity requires an abandonment of process, habits, even society itself. Consequently, this rebellion brings conflicting results like disorientation even alienation. Creativity has a tremendous cost.

Understanding our plentiful fears is the first move of dismantling them. Rollo promotes a balance between work, rest, and play as well as how our emotional well-being influences thinking.
Above all, this book is critical to anyone who longs to “express their being.” It is emotionally and intellectually comforting in any moment of fear.

On the totality of creative alienation, read Vincent Van Gogh’s letters to his beloved brother. Additionally, Steinbeck’s Working Days of is a fiercely honest account of how a shattered emotional well-being affects the creative mind.