Today we welcome back Coach Olga Monroe who blogs about the positive and not-so-positive effects of creativity as we remember Amy Winehouse who died Saturday July 23 in her North London home at the age of 27.

Janis Joplin, Sylvia Plath, Edith Piaf, Vincent Van Gogh, Toulouse Lautrec and Amy Winehouse are only a small handful of talented artists who contributed pricelessly to our world through music, poetry and painting; yet lived a life of angst and turmoil which they attempted to extinguish through alcohol and drugs.

Eckhart Tolle, author of The Power of Now, expresses that, “The mind is a superb instrument if used rightly.  Used wrongly, however, it becomes very destructive.”  Just a few pages later, he states that, “All true artists, whether they know it or not, create from a place of no-mind, from inner stillness.”  Those of us with a deep appreciation for our favorite artists recognize exactly what this “place of no-mind” produces.  Our favorite artists have added a new dimension or perspective to our lives.  Some of you, more fortunate ones, have experienced that creative “place of no-mind” when in the midst of creating your own individual contribution.  This may be through writing, painting, carpentry, sculpting, drawing, dancing, physical activity, counseling others and so many other activities.  What have your experiences been?

I know, from my own experience with depression and suffering, how much pain the mind is capable of inflicting on an individual.  This is where I resonate with Eckhart Tolle when he states, “Used wrongly…it becomes very destructive.”  I can only imagine a fraction of the pain that these gifted artists experienced.  I relate it to the “other side of the coin” of their explosive creativity and contributions.  For example, look at some of Van Gogh or Toulouse Lautrec’s artwork.  Listen to “Je Ne Regrette Rien” (Piaf), “Me and Bobby McGee” (Joplin), “Love is a Losing Game”   or “Valerie”  (Winehouse).  Read one of Sylvia Plath’s poems. Select something that you are especially fond of.  Take a moment to absorb and appreciate the genius of these creations.

Now imagine the opposite of how amazing these productions are.  I believe that my imagination and experience captures a fraction of the deep darkness that these artists experienced.

I remember Amy and all of the positive contributions that she left us.  My heart goes out to her family, friends and all of us who miss her.

About Coach Olga:

Olga is a Certified Professional Co-Active Life Coach and Mentor who passionately inspires and motivates clients desiring to realize and achieve their life purpose to their fullest potential through a system of perspectives.  She encourages her clients to see the world and its many opportunities in a new way by learning to step fearlessly into their roles as leaders at work, in their family, and within the community.  Contact here here  919-604-0104

Download Olga’s free Guided Meditation of Your Future Self now at

Your Turn:

What do you think about Amy Winehouse and her short artistic career? How does it compare to other artists who struggle along the creative/destructive path?