#Inspiringstories II: Interview with Creative Artist Daniel Neagoe

One of the challenges I face as a coach, is many people’s limiting beliefs that they are not creative. I often come across such beliefs when I ask my clients to think out of the box and come up with creative solutions to change what needs to be changed in order to start achieving the results they desire. For, as a wise man once said, “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, and expecting different results”.

Their response is quite often “I don’t know how to do this, as I am not a creative person”. This explicit belief is in part fed by a tradition and reporting in the media that creativity is a gift for the few, which is inaccessible to most of us. Hence we worship artists such as writers, painters, musicians and (especially) pop singers as some kind of demigods blessed with a rare ability to give shape to a vision which leads to our entertainment and moves our emotions. They are able to tune in to that most elusive of all frequencies, the one where Divine Inspiration resides, and return back to the world of mere mortals with gifts of creativity and inspiration (interestingly, some creative people actually encourage the belief in divine inspiration, but this is for reasons not relevant to this blog).

This point of view can be more easily challenged if we start seeing creativity under a different light; our skills to think differently in order to tackle the challenges of day-to-day life are often of a remarkably creative nature; they give an individual touch in such trivial things such as how we motivate our co-workers to do things for us they don’t really want to do, how we make a better than average cup of tea, how we avoid potholes on the road without damaging the car or swerving dangerously or -as Dan himself points out during the interview- how we negotiate traffic lights. The creative skills used by artists and musicians are not that different in that respect; as my vocal coach used to tell me, the difference between an ‘ok’ singer and an exceptional singer is merely in the details. The exceptional singer is able to add nuance, intonation and vary the tempo subtly in a way that the average singer hasn’t (yet) learned to do. And this is a skill that takes 90 percent perspiration and 10 percent inspiration, to reference the famous quote.

Regardless of whether you believe in divine inspiration or not, few people who know Daniel Neagoe will argue against the fact that he is one of these people who seems to have tuned in successfully to that place where inspiration turns into creation. As a composer, songwriter, musician and sound engineer, he has been involved in countless bands and projects over the years, creating his own music or helping others to create theirs. He has recently expanded his activities to include woodcarving (to create a special edition box set for one of his bands) and video recording and editing. His energy and drive seem unstoppable and as someone who has collaborated with him musically over the years, I thought these are good enough reasons to hold the conversation which follows below. Find out what drives a person with endless creative urges, how he manages this unstoppable force and how he incorporates his creative activities in a life which involves family duties and a day job!

Kostas The Coach is a Personal Performance and Small Business Coach based in Slough, UK. I help creative people develop their individuality and businesses grow sustainably while remaining ethical.
Kostas The Coach site
Email: Kostasthecoach@gmail.com

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