People who lead a rich and abundant life are very creative people. Maybe you think of artists when you think of creativity. Take another look. When you start to examine patterns of success, you’ll see that people rise to the top in ALL professions because they value creativity. They get there by relying on their own creativity and/or the creativity of their staff to find innovative solutions. They know that a person must go beyond what’s comfortable and familiar to create (the root of the word creativity) a remarkable life.
Even if you don’t think you’re a creative person, you can learn how to become more creative. Over a year ago, I wrote a blog post on creativity using the Disney model that makes magic out of chaos. Recently I stumbled upon the work of Roger Von Oech who wrote, A Whack on the Side of the Head. It’s a good book to show you how to become more creative. I think you’ll enjoy his roleplaying approach to increasing your creativity.
He speaks of four distinct roles that we should use to increase our creativity. Each one teaches you how to become more creative as you expand your mindsets and skills. The four roles are:
The Explorer can teach you how to become more creative. She isn’t happy staying with the status quo. Her itchy feet make her want to know what’s on the other side of the mountain. Curiosity fuels creativity. How can you become an explorer?
- Cultivate a greater awareness of yourself, your surroundings and others.
- Learn to mindfully experience each moment, instead of rushing to the next.
- Relentlessly search out new things every day.
- Explore different areas of experience and knowledge.
- Keep asking questions until you connect all the dots.
- Talk to people of varying backgrounds, ages, experience and education.
The Artist can definitely teach you how to become more creative. She’s playful and experiments as she stirs things up. She’s not afraid to try different color and texture combinations. Imagination fuels creativity. How can you become an artist?
- Jot down ideas as they come to you. This frees your brain to think of even more ideas.
- Let the little girl come out to have fun and play, instead of being so serious.
- Laugh more – at yourself first and foremost.
- Read, listen, and participate in things that keep your brain active.
- Let your imagination go as you visualize new possibilities.
- Make ‘what if?’ your leading question.
- Don’t worry about what others expect of you.
Surprisingly, The Judge can teach you how to become more creative too. She analyzes and assesses all the ins and outs of a thing. She weighs the pros and cons before making a decision. Comparison fuels creativity. How can you become a judge?
- Develop critical thinking instead of assuming.
- Use the scientific method – make a hypothesis, run an experiment, analyze the results and draw a conclusion.
- Make the hard decisions.
- Trust your gut feelings.
- Be practical – do you have the resources to make it happen or is a pie-in-the-sky dream?
- You can compare apple and oranges, but avoid comparing yourself to someone else.
The Warrior can also teach you how to be more creative. She leaps into action when she knows her idea is a good one. Despite pressure, pushbacks, or competition, she has the perseverance to keep going no matter what. Action fuels creativity. How can you become a warrior?
- Be courageous and get rid of your limiting beliefs and fears.
- Take advantage of your momentum.
- Develop resiliency and conviction.
- Overcome procrastination and chunk your plan into baby-steps.
- Keep your big picture purpose in mind.
- Market and sell your idea.
Playing all four roles is crucial to creatively making things happen. For example, when you’re nurturing a new idea, it’s time for the dreaming artist instead of the pragmatic Judge. Maintain your awareness of which role you’re performing. And double check whether it’s the appropriate role for that point in time. If you get stuck in one role, mindfully switch to another that moves you forward.
As you read over these different roles there was probably one that felt more challenging to you than the other three, right? You see it’s value… but you can’t quite embrace it since it goes against your natural inclination. Perhaps it’s time to enlist my help? I love helping my coaching clients develop new strengths they were completely unaware of previously. Feel free to contact me to schedule an “Unlocking Your Potential” complimentary consultation so we can explore your options.