10 Secrets For A More Creative Life

Illustrated by Isabel Castillo Guijarro. Photo: Jens Ingvarsson.
Multiple times a day, something I hear, see, or experience moves me to tears. I've always been this way. There's so much magic and meaning all around us, and I can't shut it off or tune it out. As Refinery29’s executive creative director and cofounder, it's my privilege and mission to be a part of that magic by creating content and experiences that empower women, express progressive ideas, and celebrate individuality through an inclusive vision of what beauty looks like and what stories are worth telling.

In that process of telling stories for the last 10 years, the thing that’s inspired me the most, and that I’m most proud of, is the role that we’ve had as observers, creators, and shapers of culture, connecting women to each other, themselves, and to the world around them; the ability that we have as individuals and as a company to create ourselves and to continually strive to be better. I’ve watched our industry shift to follow suit, to broaden the conversation and to become more representative (just look at Sports Illustrated, Barbie, and Axe in the past few months). To speak to such a large audience of women is an honor and a responsibility — one that I never take lightly.

Creative living isn’t always easy. It requires you to be vulnerable, emotionally honest, and open to both your intuition and the world around you. You will deal with criticisms and doubt — internally and externally — as well as frustration. You have to be willing to go to uncomfortable places. Not to mention, it’s mountains and mountains of work. Ahead, just a few of the most important things I’ve learned on my own journey that might help you get closer to becoming the person you want to be. (Spoiler: I’m still finding my own way there!)
To see our creative vision in action, come check out R29’s SXSW School of Self Expression, an event that celebrates all the ways that modern women share their identities with the world. Equal parts learning environment, discovery zone, and interactive playground, the space will be highly visual, immersive, and will bring our mission of celebrating individuality to life through classes, hands-on workshops, and more, as well as opportunities for our attendees to create their own content. Find out more here.