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Creativity is a Vital Tool in Dementia Care

Happy New Year, everyone! I hope your holiday season was full of joy and love. Mine sure was and I am so grateful! So, to kick off a New Year of my musings and in keeping with making new goals, I want to plant a seed with you for tapping into your inner power and talent.

My friend, Matt Olin, hosts a free gathering in Charlotte on the first Friday morning of every month. It’s called CreativeMornings/Charlotte, and it has become immensely popular. When registration opens up each month, hundreds of tickets are claimed within mere minutes.

When you step inside the CreativeMornings room, you’ll find one of the most joyful, inspiring and diverse crowds in our city.

I think one of the reasons it has become so popular is that Matt and his team work hard to deliver their message of “Everyone is Creative” to their fellow Charlotteans. Creativity is not something that some people are born with and some people are not. On the contrary, creativity is innate inside each and every one of us. (Some of us are just more comfortable acknowledging it and nurturing it.)

By “creative” they don’t necessarily mean “artistic” – which is where many of us get tripped up. The truth is, we are creative in the ways that we grow our businesses, manage our families, and run our lives. We are creative in the ways that we approach, tackle and solve the challenges and issues that we encounter – personally, professionally, and civically.

At our year-end staff Christmas party, we even employed creativity for the purpose of learning, engaging and connecting. We asked Matt to create a version of their celebrated “Queen City Quiz Show” production, specific to The Ivey! He played affable game show host, and as I watched my staff give in to the spirit of fun and competition – while also learning facts about The Ivey’s past and present – I witnessed the power of creativity in action.

Similarly, families caring for loved ones living with Alzheimer’s disease or other forms of dementia must embrace creativity to both endure the journey and thrive in the face of it. We help The Ivey’s families get creative about lots of things – how they build their support teams, overcome family issues, or assist their loved one in learning a new skill. We help caregivers get creative about how they tend to their own well-being and happiness.

Often, being creative means seizing opportunities to collaborate with others on fixing a problem, brainstorming a new approach, or enhancing the current state of things.

Think you’re not creative? Think again. You ARE. And if you’re caring for a person living with dementia – or find yourself in such a position in the future – you’ll NEED that inherent creativity to make it all work.

The creative tools are already inside of you. You just need to recognize that they’re there…and then put them to use.

We’re here to help. And together, let’s have a great year in 2018!!!