Philip Ruddy is a Los Angeles-based depth psychotherapist, who previously spent fifteen years as a writer, producer and development executive in Hollywood. He now works with writers, artists and performers, helping them explore and transcend creative blocks, anxiety, depression, and the unique stressors of the film and television industry. He can be reached via his website ActivelyImagine.com.
To listen to Part 2, click here.
In this episode, Philip discusses:
-His journey getting to the point he is now as a depth psychotherapist.
-His explanation of what depth psychology is.
-How he is able to tap into his experience as a development executive, screenwriter, and a short story writer in order to understand what other creative people are going through.
-How writer’s block is a personal thing that differs for every person that he works with.
-The notion of befriending your creative blocks.
-The idea of Active Imagination.
-How we imagine the harshest of critics will judge our work, but in reality, if someone doesn’t like your work, they typically just move on.
-The traumatic effect that negative comments from teachers can have, especially at an early age.
-The importance of seeking out a tribe and a group of peers, and not necessarily rely on the influences that your school district had as art teachers.
-Creating a new persona.
-The interplay that happens between your persona and your “true self,” both positive and negative.
“What’s the personal myth that you are leading your life by?”
“Writer’s block is something that you’re probably going to wrestle with for many years to come if you don’t make a decision to focus on it now and come up with some ways to navigate it.”
“Befriend it so that you can transcend it.”
“The idea is not just to exterminate this writer’s block but to engage it in dialogue. I actually mean that quite literally.”
“Write out a dialogue with this writer’s block and see what it has to say.”
“Writer’s block is often an unexpressed part of ourselves that wants to be heard, so if you actually give it some time and engage it, it will often tell you what it wants of you.”
“We’re often far worse critics than the real flesh-and-blood critics that we encounter.”
“The first creative act is reinventing yourself. Creating your new self as an artist.”
“To reinvent ourselves, to become who we are destined to be, takes an incredible amount of strength.”
“The Artist’s Way” by Julia Cameron
“The Red Book” by Carl Jung
“Finding Meaning in the Second Half of Life: How to Finally, Really Grow Up” by James Hollis
“An Evening with Ray Bradbury – 2001” (YouTube)
“The Hero’s Journey… For Writers, Artists & Performers” (from Philip’s blog)