Trauma & Creativity with Dr. Marion Piper
Dr. Marion Piper is a creativity coach and copywriter who has a deep understanding of the connection between creativity, trauma, and mental health. In this episode, Dr. Piper shares her journey of exploring the importance of creativity in her life and business, and how she found her passion for helping others tap into their creative potential.
🎨🧠 Here are 3 key takeaways from our discussion:
1️⃣ Trauma and creativity: We delved into the relationship between trauma and creativity. Dr. Marion Piper shared her experiences working with individuals who have used their pain and trauma as fuel for their creative endeavors. Creative people, being more sensitive to the world, often experience deeper emotions, making trauma and creativity intertwined.
2️⃣ Creativity in business: Dr. Piper highlighted the different aspects of creativity in individual and business settings. For individuals, it’s often about managing the fear of what others will think, while businesses focus on performance and preventing burnout. She also emphasized the importance of finding the right support and learning continuously to harness creativity to its fullest potential.
3️⃣ Embracing your uniqueness: Dr. Marion Piper stressed the significance of personal branding and promoting oneself authentically. By owning our message and consistently sharing it, we attract our ideal audience. Embracing our obsessions and being true to ourselves allows us to connect with others who share our interests and values.
🎧 If you want to dive deeper into our conversation and learn more about Dr. Marion Piper’s insights, listen to the full episode of Superfan Attraction.
Links: www.marionpipercreative.com Insta: @marionpipercreative LinkedIn: /marionpiper
Diane Foy [00:00:00]:
Artists and creatives, you have the power to heal, transform, and elevate lives. Are you ready to step into that power?
Hello and welcome to Super Fan Attraction. I’m so excited about my guest today. We have a lot in common. We have a lot of the same passions with creativity and I’m just gonna Introduce her with her bio here, so if you want to live a fully creative life then Doctor. Marion Piper Is your go to gal.
As a creativity coach and copywriter she supports creative entrepreneurs To become their most creative selves so that they can communicate their world changing ideas with confidence and passion. Having traveled the world and completed a swag of degrees, she’s multi passionate, obviously, including a PhD Doctor.
Diane Foy [00:01:07]:
Marion Piper is here to inspire you to Percolate your pain and live in flow. We study creativity coaching with the same with doctor Eric Mizelle. And I love how she really focuses on Dealing with trauma and mental health when it comes to creativity and what you do Because I know my clients I think a lot of my clients, I somehow I’m I’m drawing in Artists and creatives who’ve had trauma and I’ve been honored that I’ve been able to help.
Often, I’m the 1st person they’ve ever told. And that is such a privilege and honor. And so I like to learn as much as I can, so I’ll probably focus my conversation on trauma and mental health When she comes on. Hello. Welcome to Super Fan Attraction. I’m excited to Chat with you today because, you know, I really dug deep into your website and your bios and all that.
Diane Foy [00:02:33]:
And I’m like I kept Coming across another thing that we have in common. So for those who don’t know you, why don’t you give a little introduction to us for you?
Dr. Marion Piper [00:02:44]:
I would love to. Thanks so much for having me. Podcasting is, definitely one of my favorite things to do in the world, so I feel like I’m being very much indulged and luxuriated at the moment. But hello, friends, new and old. I’m doctor Mary Inpiper, I’m a writer, a speaker, and a creativity coach, and I tend to play in the space that exists between creativity and mental health.
So how we can use, creativity both, the process, the practice, and the product, as a way to not just, you know, put beautiful things into the world, but as a way to deeply connect with ourselves, to heal ourselves from our trauma, And to also, I guess, build a better world. And for me, creativity is everything. It is, like, the thing that I think will make the biggest difference in people’s lives.
Diane Foy [00:03:39]:
So do do you work with more Creatives or you’re working with other people to embrace their creativity?
Dr. Marion Piper [00:03:47]:
And it does it does tend to, Change depending on where what context and what environment I’m in. I’ve worked with, because my because my background is in creative industries, and I’ve always and I’ve also worked in the visual arts. I have a I have a A sort of a spectrum of clients that sort of extend from, you know, practicing professional artists, you know, painters, ceramicists, To people who are in, creative businesses, so I’d probably call them the creative entrepreneurial type, which are the people that are, You know, creating, using their art for a particular audience.
And then I also work with creative businesses. And more recently, I’ve Started doing a lot of works work with start ups because that space is really interesting. It’s a very high pressure creative environment, kind of similar to Creative agency land, like, advertising agencies and design studios. And I love what I love so much about Startups is that they’re often working with ideas that have never existed before, which places a whole new different type of demand on your creative Spirit and energy and body. So that’s sort of where I’m I’ve been focusing a bit of attention lately.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:05:03]:
But, yeah, Honestly, probably my favorite people to work with are the ones that used to be creative when they were younger. Maybe they were the art kid at school. They hung out in the music room. And then for whatever reason, when they left school, maybe they didn’t have the right People around them to sort of say, hey. Go for it. Chase that creative career, or maybe they just had other interests. You know, They go and they live their lives. You know, maybe 10, 15, 20 years has passed.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:05:32]:
And then all of a sudden, they get this whisper. They get this little whisper that comes in, sort of in the in, you know, in the back of their mind of of reminding them who they are, reminding them of, their creative Nature, and they’re sort of coming back to the practice as an adult. Maybe and maybe they’ve got kids as well that they wanna involve in it.
So, those people I find, when they’re on that journey, and and oftentimes, actually, it’s because, You know, a big disruption has happened. There’s been a big challenge or a big trauma, and they’re sort of rediscovering who they are through the lens of creativity. That’s sort of, like, probably, if I would Probably if I would think of an ideal client, that’s probably my person.
Diane Foy [00:06:13]:
I think we all have to kinda make time for creativity and Time away from whatever your job is. Even if you are an artist, I always cons I always encourage artists to explore Something that’s not their art, but some other art. And I think because I’m multipassionate and, a lot of, Yeah. I would work with musicians.
I would work with actors and artists, but I found, like, when they’re in those industries, they don’t really Cross. They kinda stay in their own lane. And I’m always like, you know what? A musician can learn so much from an actor And vice versa. And so go explore something that’s not your norm, And it it will add to your creativity.
Diane Foy [00:07:03]:
So I think that’s probably what you do if someone that doesn’t even do this for a living To be able to explore their creativity in different ways.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:07:13]:
One of the things that I always say when Particularly if people are feeling creatively blocked, and they’re sort of sitting with whatever they’re trying to make, and they’re Hammering, hammering, hammering, and nothing’s happening, or they’re going around in circles. Just to sort of further Amplify your point about cross pollination between different art forms. What I usually, encourage people to do is to go and take instruction. So if you are someone who you know, you’re working on a body of work, whatever that might be, whether that’s a business or whether that’s, you know, a series of paintings, If you go and take a class in something completely different, like improv, like, maybe you join a choir, I don’t know, anything, what that does is that it takes your brain’s focus off the problem that you’re having with what you’re working on, And it reengages it into the creative process.
And literally, every single time someone does that, and and it happens to me too, whenever I go and step outside side of my, wheelhouse and go and try something new. The next time I come back to my work, everything flows, and it flows so much quicker Because I’ve given my brain an opportunity to rest and to not have to consciously focus on what I’m working on, because our brains are always creating. They’re always working in the background. They’re always connecting the dots.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:08:35]:
It’s always, like, firing and wiring in new different ways. And so The more of those new experiences you can have, the better the better your, I suppose, your primary creative practice is going to be because it’ll be infused by all those different things.
Diane Foy [00:08:50]:
Yeah. And is it more, individuals that would come to you, or is it more, companies or both?
Dr. Marion Piper [00:08:59]:
I do both. I do both. I have been offering 1 on 1 sessions, just to individuals For the past, probably, 2, two and a bit years, but more recently, I’ve been running sort of smaller group, style workshops, in businesses, I do a lot of speaking in corporates, so, particularly around, creative teams. So I’ve worked, You know, I’ve worked with a few big startups here in Australia, with their design team, who you know, they have these, these big, like, full cross company wide meetings.
And I’ve sort of come in and, you know, inspired and educated and just reminded them Of, you know, what’s kind of the most important thing, which is the creation itself. Because I think the difference between individuals and businesses is that For business, there’s so much politics involved. There’s, like, a politics of creativity because it’s been commercialized, And you have so many different people’s agendas that are weighing in on what you’re making.
There’s so much more, distraction and, you have to be aware of all those different dynamics happening, whereas, Personally, you do have, like, a personal politics of creativity, but, generally, it tends to be a, a little bit more specific.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:10:23]:
Whereas the the business version, is a little bit more, broader in general. But for for individuals, what I say, the biggest The biggest thing that is sort of weighing on their mind is it’s either, a, what will people think? And by people, it’s usually my family. Whereas for businesses, it’s like, how do I how do I perform higher so I keep my job, or how do I contribute in a way that is fulfilling to me but doesn’t burn me out? So you You kinda got they’re they’re very similar energies, but, slightly different, outcomes and paths to get there.
Diane Foy [00:11:00]:
Yeah. And so I’m curious to hear a bit about your journey, like where you started and where how you got to where you are now. I know it’s always like a a long answer, but I’m I love it. I love hearing the whole journey. Like, so Maybe how how did you get into this? What may what was your first thing that you wanted to do? Because I know you’re multipassionate, so you’ve You’ve done a lot of training, and so I would love to hear about your journey.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:11:32]:
Oh, man. I and I look. I’m like you. I love this question. I love hearing, everyone’s origin story, because I think it helps you to understand, just how much goes into, You know, being human. Right?
Diane Foy [00:11:47]:
Dr. Marion Piper [00:11:48]:
And so for me, I always knew always knew from, you know, the second I was conscious That I was gonna have a creative career, that I was gonna be someone who played in the realm of creativity. I when I was when I was younger, I, you know, I used to, you know, create the all these little cutouts, and I was terrible terrible at drawing when I was younger. Much better at now, but, Terrible at drawing, and so I’d create all these little characters, and I would have create these worlds that I would just occupy myself for hours.
And as an only child, I had a really rough upbringing, so Creativity was really, an escape for me. And it was my refuge from, you know, a lot of the stuff that was happening around me, which was, you know, Broken home. My my mom is an alcoholic. We moved a lot. You know? So I really needed to give myself that Sense of certainty from a really young age, which is, you know, looking back on it, because it was just what I went through, it felt really normal.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:12:46]:
But looking back on it, I was like, wow. And this is kinda what led me to do my PhD project, which I can we can dig into in a sec. Yeah. But looking back on it, I was like, how did I even know to do that? And so I think for for me, there’s there’s always been this, like, Really deep internal desire and calling to do, to do creative work, particularly In the realm of self expression, you know, how do I translate what is happening inside of me into something that, not just makes sense to other people, but that can forge a connection, because I was so isolated growing up.
But then when I was, and this is this is so random. When I was, like, 15, 16, I announced to my my high school art teacher, who is a really good friend and still is a really good friend now, I said I wanted to be an art critic. Don’t really know where that came from, but I I wanted to write about And write about other people’s self expression. And so, you know, we started started to look into universities, and I ended up moving Being from, you know, a small regional town, in the, you know, the sort of Mideast coast of Australia down to Melbourne, which is where I am now.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:14:00]:
And I studied, creative arts at uni. I I blasted through All of their, art theoretical units of study, like, in, like, a year and a half, and they were like, you have to pick a practical major now because, there’s no other subjects left for you to do, so I ended up specializing in photo media and fell in love with, digital video installations. And so I was like, oh, maybe I’ll become, like, a video artist, which was, like, really hot in, like, the early 2000.
It was, like, The kind of the crescendo of that particular art form. And so, I did that. I ended up doing an honors year as well, and then I got the travel bug and sort of traveled around. And, when I was in I distinctly remember this moment when I was in, On a beach in Brazil with one of my with one of my best friends, and I turned to her. We’re in the water.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:14:53]:
It’s beautiful backdrop. Like, it’s sunny, stunning, and I was just so I felt so Free and so open, and I actually said said, I wanna be a writer. Actually, that is the thing that has been the through line through everything that I’ve done. And I think I was I think I was probably 23 at the time. And, we, so I I sort of set out on a course to go, okay.
Well, how can I how can I become the writer that I envisage? So So I ended up doing a master’s in writing, and then, ended up getting a job as a as a copywriter working in, a creative agency. And so I sort of I built a commercial skill for writing whilst I was also exploring a creative skill for writing. And so, it’s been very much the parallel between those two things.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:15:41]:
And along the way, I’ve done so many other amazing creative jobs. Like, I’ve had The absolute fortune to work in an art gallery. I worked at a in a US summer camp, teaching video, to high school kids. Shout out to Bucks Rock. Absolutely beautiful place. And yeah. And so I I kind of was on this journey, and then I got really, really burnt out, in 2019, from a from all this agency work and being on all the time and having that pressure to create. And so, I ended up leaving my last agency job, and I was like, right.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:16:18]:
I’m gonna start a business. And then, you know, the pandemic hits. And I basically was flat out for two and a half years. I didn’t stop. I didn’t take a holiday. Because, as a copywriter, when The pandemic hit. Everybody was trying to get online. Nobody knew how to talk to their customers about it, and so I had I was so blessed.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:16:39]:
Like, I just had so much work coming in, and then that also created more issues because I got more burnt out. And then sort of through that journey of of, you know, business and, you know, also, I should sort of backtrack a little bit. In 2017, I finished my PhD project. Starting running a business and doing a PhD, I can see so many similarities the 2, because you’re really on your own. You’re really gonna make your own decisions.
You’ve really gotta be the one to, decide what direction you’re going to take, Who your work is for, who you’re gonna speak to, you know, what specific one thing you want people to To be able to, like, take away with and grow and learn from you. And so I was like, yes. Writing is the is the channel and the medium through which I work, but, the thing at the heart of everything was creativity.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:17:34]:
And, it’s sort of interesting to me that I I’ve Seem to have this every sort of every sort of 7 to 10 years, I have this, like, really deep, clear insight around, You know, the thing that I’m here to do. And, yeah, that’s when I sorta started in 2021 is when I started to explore this idea of like, well, okay. What what would a life look like? What would a business look like if creativity was at the center of everything that I did? Not just writing, but, You know, the actual process and self expression and how that manifests, in different ways, in different contexts.
And so, that’s when I sort of stumbled into the work of doc doctor Eric Maisel, who I did my creativity coaching training with, who is just the most wonderful human being. And I’m still I still feel very I have lots of complicated feelings about the word coach, especially as a creative. And so, because in my in in my head, at least, they’re they’re very, They’re kind of at odds with each other because they have they require a different way of being in the world. So, I’ve been living in that tension. Pardon me.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:18:45]:
I’ve been living in that tension for the last couple of years trying to figure out how to reconcile those 2 things. And, it’s been it’s been wild. The when I made that decision to go all in on creativity as a as a As the kind of the driver for my business, it’s incredible the kinds of opportunities and doors that have opened up, by announcing that. You know? And I think, definitely, one of the things that I reflect on in you know, if I look back at all the things I’ve been able to achieve, it’s really because I showed up, and I announced and said this is what I wanna do.
And I found the people to help me. I found the opportunities. You know? And so I think as creatives, as artists, we forget that that the world is ready, and the world is hungry for what we’re ready what we wanna produce, And that there is space, but we have to be the ones to go first. We have to be the ones to put our foot out, open the door, And say I’m here.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:19:46]:
I’m ready. I’m available. And I’m and, you know, you need to step out of the studio to do that. And so, oftentimes, I find well, yeah, one of the biggest things, and, you know, I’m guilty of this myself, is I spend all this time creating, and then I forget that I actually have to make That transition to come back out into the world again, and share what I’ve created because that kinda closes the loop on everything that we make. So My my my journey has been one of just pure chaos at times, Amazing joy.
And I’m sure, you know, everyone you know, we all have our our ups and downs. And But if I I sorta look back and if I look at the person I am now compared to, you know, what I where I sorta came from, it’s like, I just can’t believe I just can’t believe that’s possible. So whenever I feel like there’s no opportunities or, you know, things are really slow, I think about that little girl, and I go, oh my god.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:20:45]:
Like, if if I can get if I can pull myself out of that situation and that hole, like, Everything’s gonna be fine. Like, whatever’s coming, I can handle it.
Diane Foy [00:20:58]:
Yeah. Yeah. And I’m interested that you’re you talk about mental health and trauma And connect it’s connection to creativity. And I find I’m curious about that too because I think I just happen to draw. To me, a lot of my clients have trauma. Like, we everyone has trauma, but, You know, I tend to attract the ones that have had serious, like, Childhood trauma. And I’m honored that a lot of times I’m the 1st person they’ve ever even told things to. And I help them through that and how it connects to what they do and why they do what they do.
Diane Foy [00:21:50]:
So I’m curious how does that translate into your work and Yeah. Whatever your thoughts are about that, is there do you find that more artists have trauma than other people? Or how does that work?
Dr. Marion Piper [00:22:07]:
Yeah. Oh, man. It’s, it’s so it’s so interesting to me because I thought that was one of my fears, You know, stepping into this role of, you know, the creativity coach, or even talking about, you know, what I’ve been through And trauma so openly is that I thought I thought that’s what would happen to me, and I I worry that I didn’t have didn’t have the capacity To to hold that space of people and what that would do to to me, as as a human bearing witness to that, but, also, You know, I didn’t wanna, put put anyone else in a situation where, you know, they were being open and vulnerable and raw, and they They couldn’t get the the support that they needed.
So, but that’s definitely not been the case, and it’s been really interesting. I think because because of the way that I talk about Trauma. I don’t talk about, you know, and I very much lean on the work of doctor Gabor Mate here. In that, you know, talking about Trauma is not what happens to you, but it what happens inside of you as a result of what happens to you. And And an extension of that so my research that I did, my PhD project, really dug into the concept of post traumatic growth, Which is the more positive cousin of PTSD, which tends to show up in people in, 5 distinct ways, in that they, they tend to have deeper relationships with the people around them.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:23:34]:
They have a deeper sense of their own spirituality, a sense of their own A greater sense of their own strength, their own personal strength. They have a greater appreciation of life, and they have a the capacity to see new possibilities. And so, talking about this concept, has definitely it’s attracted people who have been through significant trauma, But they’re actually at a stage, themselves, where they’re at that tipping point between, you know, I have I’ve been through this thing, but there’s been enough time that’s passed That I feel like I’m functioning. I’m okay. I’m good. But I wanna do something with this pain.
I don’t wanna just be stuck with it. I don’t want it to be something that holds me back, but I’m actually ready to create, and I’m ready to create from that place with not ignoring it, not pushing it aside, not pretending it didn’t happen, But I wanna use my my pain and my trauma as fuel, to do something good in the world.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:24:29]:
So That’s a really empowering place to be, and I find I actually find that people who aren’t ready to do that, they really don’t like They they really don’t like the way that I talk. They don’t like the message that I put out there because they’re just not ready to hear it. And so, one of the things that, a few well, there’s I mean, there’s so many there’s so many ways that creativity and trauma are connected.
And I think one of the things that, and, you know, Rick Rubin talks about this a lot is that, you know, this idea of the artist’s antenna. And I think, creative people, artists, people who are kind of born with that Natural curiosity, or at least it’s encouraged from a really young age, they’re way more sensitive to the world and the environment.
And the problem with that is that it leaves you open to experiencing things way more deeply and personally than people who don’t have that same sensitivity. And so I think that’s why a lot of artists end up, you know, experiencing, trauma, and and sort of, you know, that becomes their driving force because they’re just so sensitive, so that you, you know, you have spectrum of different types of trauma that could happen. You have, you know, your big t trauma, which is the stuff that, you know, changes your worldview.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:25:47]:
It shatters your worldview. It breaks you. It, like, tears everything down. Then you have the on the other end, you have the small t trauma, which are the the the the Challenges and obstacles that happen, but they’re the ones that just affect you personally, then they don’t shatter your worldview. They don’t break you apart.
However, The small t traumas are the ones that are going to add up over time, and they can actually be way more damaging, for people, if they don’t learn how to manage stress and anxiety and fear. And so it’s oftentimes why, you know, You’ll see you’ll see people who have seemingly had the most, you know, loving upbringing. You know, they went to the, you know, went to the right schools.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:26:30]:
They got married. They had the family. But over time, they’ve just they’ve never they never developed the skill. They never they were never exposed to enough of a challenge to learn how to cope with it. And so the people that I worry for the most in this world are the people who’ve never experienced a big trauma, because they’re the ones that it’s gonna affect the most because they haven’t built up that skill to learn what to do with it, and that’s where I think creativity can make the biggest difference. Because what it does, The creative process itself is it pushes you into this space of of, like, deep discomfort and challenge, and it forces you to look at things differently. So it in itself shares a lot of the process shares a lot of qualities with, with with trauma. They kinda mirror each other in different ways.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:27:18]:
And so, if we can expose people more people to a creative process where, you know, they’re not just It’s not just the happy, you know, I get to paint a painting and, you know, draw that. But if we can expose them to things where They’re gonna fail. They things are gonna break. And this is why I love ceramics so much, and this is why pottery is a really brilliant medium for people who, you know, wanna experience that? Because, like, if you’ve ever if you’ve ever ever sat at a pottery wheel, it is very humbling.
Like, it is very, very humbling experience, especially then when you get things fired and they crack and they break and they explode, like, all of that all of that That challenge that, you know, that that you can put yourself through in a really safe and nourishing environment with creativity, That’s what I I believe and I know deeply bolsters me for the things that are unexpected, that are that are gonna come because, like, Nobody gets out of this stuff alive. Like, trauma is coming for us all. So it’s it’s not really about, like, what what will I do when it happens, but it’s like, How can I prepare myself for when it does inevitably arrive?
Diane Foy [00:28:32]:
Yeah. That’s so interesting that you’re talking about how People that have not had that big trauma, you worry more for them. And I guess that makes sense because, like, You know, the ones that have had more of a bigger trauma were resilient. We we’re just like, We keep going no matter what, and we’ve we’re we’re used to it and we can kinda recover from it a little bit faster. But, yeah, if you haven’t really experienced it, then little things can add up over time. Yeah. I I studied with Eric as well, For creativity coaching, did you do any other kind of coaching, programs, or was that the main for Coaching.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:29:18]:
I mean, I’ve had, I’ve had a coach since I started my business. I’ve always I’ve been I’ve definitely believed in the value of it, in different parts of my life. But, no, I I’ve just done, Eric Maisel’s training. I’ve done I’ve done, like I haven’t done a coaching certification, like, a life coaching certification or anything. I kind of figure And and, you know, I’m I’m very conscious of the fact that I am a lifelong learner, and, I can actually use education and learning As a way to procrastinate from doing the work that I know I need to do. So I’m very, very conscious of not taking on Yeah. Too many other people’s opinions and things. Yeah.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:30:03]:
Yeah. So, I, I but I would love to. Like, I love, you know, I just recently went to, attorney Robbins event here in Sydney, and I love being in that environment. I love being around, you know, people who are, you know, obsessed with personal development and growth, and, You know, they there’s just there’s just something that’s so, the momentum that you can build from those kinds of environments are really, really wonderful, Particularly for create creativity and creative practice. And I think, you know, I’ll I’ll eventually do I I I will I’ll eventually do another Coaching certification, I think. I think that will really help me get over the fear of calling myself a coach, when I’ve actually, you know, been certified to do it. But I would love to do it in an immersive way. I don’t just wanna do it online.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:30:56]:
I would love to go to a place for, like, You know? Kinda like how yoga teachers go. They might go to Bali and do an immersive immersion for, like, 30 days
Diane Foy [00:31:04]:
Dr. Marion Piper [00:31:05]:
To get, their, teacher training certification. I’d love to do that for coaching or anything really because, like, immersion is, like, the absolute best thing for for learning. So, that’s definitely on the horizon.
Diane Foy [00:31:20]:
Yeah. And I think also, like, I learned that The certification, it doesn’t mean anything. You know? I think, when I first got into coaching, it’s like I felt like, okay, everyone kinda says, oh, you need to be certified. You need to be certified. Okay. And so I was, like, looking at there’s all kinds of things online, and there’s a world that of education and and that I could do online. And And but I went to what seemed like a legit coaching program to get certified. But so I did that as my first thing, but then I just dove into all this on I discovered online courses, and I took a course on anything and everything I could possibly find because I was obsessed.
Diane Foy [00:32:14]:
And so I also relate to what you said about very aware that you Could dive in and be endlessly learning and not actually go and do stuff. It holds you back. But, yeah, that’s how I got my coach training, and I I say I learned way more from all those other, Like courses, some of them were just on Udemy that cost, like, $15. I learned more from those than that legit Certification. So it’s and and then once you do start coaching, nobody cares that you’ve been certified. Like, nobody cares. So it’s more of what you can help people with. But, yeah, that’s interesting to be very aware of that.
Diane Foy [00:32:59]:
I’m starting to be aware of that now Because I used to be the one that would sign up for every 5 day challenge, every you know? And now I’m like, no. No. I gotta do my own thing. I gotta actually do some work with what I’m learning before I learn more. You know? But yeah. It’s when you’re a lifelong learner, we just love to learn new things and and we crave it. But it makes us I I feel like that’s your certification is that you’ve, you know, you’ve continuously added to your knowledge and skills, and that’s How you can better help people?
Dr. Marion Piper [00:33:38]:
Yeah. What you’re tapping into, and there’s a there’s a whole there’s a whole body of, research around The value of lived experience, as, a knowledge base. You know? And I think as as as creative people, as artists, Our greatest asset is our creative practice. You know, it’s the hours that we spend, tinkering and ideating and moving through those really complicated emotions and feelings, that come along with, you know, this, you know, moving an idea from just the ether into, you know, 5 day reality. So, and and and this one one of the things that, you know, often happens with creative people is that they feel like, they don’t have enough skills. You know, I don’t feel like my work is strong enough and you know?
Or, you know, I I had it like there’s a comparison that kicks in, and then that forces people to go and take more courses and Sign up for more workshops when, really, the way that you get better, the only way that you get better is by creating. And so Whenever I feel all of those comparisons and, you know, I get tripped up in, like, oh, what does this what does this thing need to be called? What shape does it need to Take. Like, is it a book? Is it a course? Is it a whatever? I go, hang on.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:34:57]:
Woah. Woah. Woah. Woah. Let’s just back things up. How about I just start making it, And I will trust that I’m gonna figure out the form it needs to take along the way rather than trying to start with the end in mind And forgetting that things are created by actually creating them. So it seems really dumb and really simple, but, that’s actually how you get better. And then if you get if you get to a point where you’re like, actually, I don’t know how to do that, that’s when you need to take the course.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:35:24]:
You don’t need to take the course before you’ve started creating. You take it when you need it rather than just for the sake of doing it.
Diane Foy [00:35:32]:
Yeah. And then by doing it, you realize if there are gaps in your knowledge or gaps in your experience That you can oh, okay. I’ll I need to go take learn that whether it’s a course or a book or, you know, there’s The Internet’s a wonderful world of information. So I always say, like, there’s tons of free and low cost things that you can Absorb and learn online. So what do you do in your day to day? What does that look like? Because you’re a copywriter, you’re a coach, you’re podcast.
Do you have you know, do you work with companies? What is your kind of do you have a priority of A focus of one thing that you mainly do, or is it a different every day?
Dr. Marion Piper [00:36:23]:
Yeah. Great question. I I mean, there are some certain staples to to my day that if I don’t do them, I’m an absolute mess, and nothing else gets done. Because, you know, when you work for yourself, or in a small business, there’s really no you have to be the one to put the guardrails up. Like, there’s really no guardrails to your day. Like, if I if I start the day distracted, the the day is basically gone. So I have to really be really intentional and conscious about how I tee up my day, because I also get Really overwhelmed if I have too many options of things to do, so I kind of have to make decisions ahead of time to just, you know, Just put some constraints in place to make sure I actually do things. But, for me, the nonnegotiables are, I probably, like, 4 out of 7 days 4 to 5 out of 7 days, I go to the gym first thing in the morning.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:37:16]:
I go to, a group group exercise Size for me has, like, been an absolute game changer, and so I’m there, at 6:30 in the morning. You know, it’s the same group of people. You know, we have just, like, the best time, and it is the most empowering and strengthening way to sort of start my day. And I’ll either, typically, either journal. If I wake up really early, which sometimes happens, sometimes I’m up at, like, 4:35 just because my brain is like, we’re ready to go. I will journal, before I go to the gym or I journal when I get back from the gym. Journaling is every single day. I Can count on I can count on 2 hands the number of days I’ve missed in the last, like, 6 years.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:37:56]:
It’s not that many. Not that many. So journaling for me is, like, the anchoring practice to everything. And probably my probably, if I would think about My favorite creative practice journaling is definitely the number 1. And then my days really do vary. Like, Some day some days, like, if I take today, for example, you know, I’m recording this podcast with you. I’m, speaking a keynote tomorrow on Saturday, at a conference. So I’ve gotta finish off my slides, which I’m gonna do to do after the after we’re wrapped up here.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:38:31]:
And then I’ve got Some, some emails to respond to to sort of set up some workshops. And then yesterday, actually, I was, I did, like, a short term 1 week contract with a creative agency just while their copywriter was on holidays. So it really does vary quite a bit. And, just when I think if I’m I’m sort of looking ahead to my calendar, and I’m like, oh, like, November’s looking pretty open. And, you know, we’re we’re halfway through October now. Oh, November’s looking pretty open. You know, maybe that’ll be some time I can stop to sort of create these other things that I wanna put together. I wanna, I’m in the process of Creating an audio only journaling course.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:39:11]:
Journaling yeah. It’s I suppose it’s a course. Workshop y type course for people, Because I, I’ve been running these, live sessions, which have been really, really great, but I’ve been struggling to find the right time to run it. So I was like, okay. I’m gonna take all that content, put it into something that people can do on their own. And then I’ve We’ve just had some branding done, so, I need to redo my website. So, you know, there’s there’s stuff that’s always there’s always something to do. And then in amongst that, I always try, in throughout the course of the week, I try to get to sort of 2 or 3 different events, Whether that’s an online event, whether that’s a networking event, just so I can sort of meet more people because I think that’s really important.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:39:57]:
Opportunities come from people, not businesses. So, I’m always out there, you know, showing up and trying to meet, you know, potential new clients and, get things going that way. But, yeah. And then if I look if I sorta look To the end of my day, typically, the way that that runs down is I I usually spend my evenings, because I’m, thankfully, single, and I don’t have kids. So I actually have lots of time, and I’m very grateful for that. So I typically will spend my evenings, engaging in some kind of wind down creative practice. At the moment, I have a puzzle going, which you I don’t know. You can kind of see on the table behind me.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:40:40]:
And then I’ll, I sort of from 8 o’clock, all devices go off, and that’s my sort of wind down time. And that’s usually when I’ll read, or draw or Sort of just, like, think and let let whatever needs to come out of my brain come out of my brain. But, yeah, I love the fact that my life is so random, And I’ve actually worked out that the more random it is, the better it works. So if things get too predictable, Nothing works. So I try as much as I can to to keep every day as, not as open, but, I have some I have an idea of what I wanna get done, but I don’t pin it down. I don’t like time block or do any of that stuff that people tell you to do. I just go into it with the intention of getting things done, and things just seem to happen. So, yeah, that’s kinda how my life functions in By not functioning.
Diane Foy [00:41:36]:
Right. It’s because this is super fan attraction, it’s personal branding and Promotion. So what would you say would be the most the things that you do that help you attract your people the most? Is it the podcast? Is it going to events? Is it going to Oh, I love that.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:42:02]:
Social media? Yeah. Yeah. I so I used to think I used to think it was about the work. So I used to think, if I do good work, The clients will come. Or, like, if I’d if I’ve put all my energy into doing the best work possible, and and sure, that is absolutely part of the equation. But it wasn’t until I actually started, owning, a message, And and, you know, a message that I embodied. So, you know, I always think about this idea of, like, What hill do I wanna die on?
What thing would I champion until I was blue in the face? And when it was when I started owning that and owning my own story and then talking about those, so it’s really been, In my content, in my, podcasting, and in my speaking that I’ve seen the The fastest and, most, on point attraction of my tribe, because I think, you know, because it I kind of I go I go back and forth in my head about this, and I do I do test and try things out a lot. And I think that’s part of it.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:43:23]:
Right? You gotta be you gotta be, like, not afraid to just bomb, to just not like, I’m gonna try a message, and if it bombs, if it tanks, that’s fine. But you gotta try to know. Yeah. And so I think, early on, I tried I really emulated and tried to follow What people were doing in the industry that I liked or that I thought was I was like, I I tried to basically copy the things that I was attracted to in the market. And all that did was it just made me feel like like an imposter, because I couldn’t quite do it the same way that they were doing it. And it felt like Yeah. Kind of unnatural and a bit awkward and a bit clunky, and and I would attract people who Also like that other you know, what those other people were doing, but they weren’t exactly my people. So I had to really take a step back and go, Okay.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:44:14]:
Like, if I were to do this if I were to do this in my way, and and how I write and how I speak, Like, what would that look like? What do I what do I love talking about? What are the things that what are the things that I am so obsessed about? Because obsession you know? And I think obsession has a really bad rap because it’s often tied to addiction and, You know, and to, like, work holism and all those terrible things, but we don’t talk about I don’t hear people talk about the positive side of of obsession much And the energy that obsession creates. You know?
Like, I am so obsessed with journaling, and I talk about it all the time That, you know, the people that I attract are not necessarily also people that are like that, but they’re the people that wanna be like that. Right? So I kinda think like, okay. Like, What other things am I obsessed about? And so I you know? And and I and I go I get really weird and unhinged about it, and that attracts really interesting people. So it’s like and it’s all those little obsessions.
They’re the things that make me different and unique. And I think when you when you find the things that make you different and unique, You can’t help but attract your people because they they they’re looking for it just the same as I’m looking for it too out in the world. So, but, yeah, I think, probably, yeah, if I were to say, like, the thing that’s been that’s made the biggest difference is is really Looking at the the people out in in the world doing the things that I love, that that that that I’m attracted to, And trying to find a way to partner with them, trying to find a way to work with them, trying to find a way to leverage their audience too.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:45:50]:
Because if I if I like them so much, then their are probably go also gonna love me. And a case in point of that is, there’s this amazing group of people here in Australia called the finders keepers, And they run these incredible arts and crafts and creative small business markets in all the capital cities. And they were hosting a creative business summit earlier in the year. And I was like, oh my god. Like, I need to speak I need to go first, I need to go to that summit because I know that my people will be there, Secondly, I need to be a part of it. Like, I don’t just wanna be in the audience. I wanna contribute to make this thing better. So, I literally just pitched them a cold email and was like, hey.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:46:31]:
We don’t know each other, but we need to because x y z and, you know, you you know, your that one of the panelists was someone whose Podcast I’d been on, and so I sent them the episode. And so I think it’s about, like especially for those kinds of opportunities, it’s like Looking at what commonalities you have rather than just being like, can you help me because I wanna be a speaker? It’s like, actually, how can I Contribute my best self to what you’re trying to build? And people love that.
Like, that’s the surefire way to, you know, to get in, you know, to get in with someone is if you can show how you can add value and contribute. So, it’s and it’s been a journey. Like, trying to understand this, and I’ve Done I’ve done so much work on myself and my message, in order to try and, like, hone it down into something that It’s easy enough for people to remember so that then they can then pass that on for me. So it’s not like I just woke up one day, and I was like, This is who I am. It’s like, no. Actually, I had to, like, consciously think about it.
Diane Foy [00:47:32]:
Yeah. That’s why I always say that personal branding begins with Personal development because in you have to know what you’re marketing first and really getting to know what’s unique about you and And sharing your story. And especially artists tend to think, oh, my art can speak for myself Long as I do the work, like how you were saying. But there’s more to it than that. You gotta share who you are authentically. And because Even if I’m buying, like, a painting, I still wanna know, well, who who is the artist? What’s their story? What’s I want a connection. And that’s gonna make me wanna buy it more than just, oh, I like this art. And so I love that.
Diane Foy [00:48:19]:
And, Yeah. Just figuring out what’s unique about you and and sharing your story. I love it. So what is your why?
Dr. Marion Piper [00:48:32]:
Oh, just straight in there. What is my why? I believe that Creativity has the power to save us over and over and over and over again, But we must be willing to let go of control. And so I think my I think my why is really around, Helping people understand that there’s always another way and that we can find it together. And I’m really deeply driven by this, like, internal burning desire, to express.
And I really think I really think the reason why anything gets made is because somebody else has that too. You know, they have this desire to to change something, to make something better. I think I innately think that we are wired to create. And if you look around at everything in the world, like from, you know, this computer that I’m looking at to, you know, the literally everything else behind me, It has been created by some someone at some point.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:49:51]:
Some human brain said, we need this, or, you know, this will solve this problem. So I think my why my why and my how and my what are all kind of like the same thing. It’s all about how, you know, Creativity is is really the life force that drives everything. You know? And it’s both the anti it’s both the poison and the antidote. So, you know, it’s it’s not as simple as just, you know, be creative and everything gets better. No. It’s like when you when you decide, when you make that decision to create, you are taking radical responsibility for your role in the world. And I think if more people understood That they actually do have that agency and that power? Like, whole like, the kind of world that we would live in would be so different, and that’s That’s the world that I wanna live in.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:50:39]:
That’s the world that I’m trying to build.
Diane Foy [00:50:42]:
Wow. That’s amazing. I love that. So Where can people find you online if they wanna connect with you? You have a podcast. We’re all that good stuff.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:50:57]:
Yeah. Yeah. So, I generally loiter, most on Instagram at Marian Piper Creative. My website is also marriampipercreative.com. The podcast is called What Doesn’t Kill Us. And, Yeah. You can also find me on LinkedIn. If you’re if you’re, like, more business y and that’s where you hang out, just I’m just Marian Piper on LinkedIn.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:51:18]:
You’ll see me. I’m wearing There’s a photo of me in a pool holding a book. It’s very crazy. But yeah. So and I encourage people to reach out. My DMs are always open, and I love talking about this stuff as you can probably tell. So please don’t be shy.
Diane Foy [00:51:34]:
Wonderful. Thank you so much. This has been so interesting to hear your your views on everything. So thank you so much for joining us.
Dr. Marion Piper [00:51:44]:
Thanks for having me. It’s been an absolute treat.
Diane Foy [00:51:48]:
Thanks for watching Super Fan Attraction. If you enjoyed this episode and all that you’re learning be sure to subscribe to the channel. To connect with me, I’m dianne foy arts On all socials and in the super fan attraction group on Facebook.