Claim Your Creativity
Do you consider yourself creative?
No matter how you answer the question, you will spend a lot of time creating today.
You’ll create a Facebook update, a business strategy, or a punishment for your kid. You’ll create an outfit, an attitude, or a way to help a friend. You’ll create a sale or a meal or a moment to remember. You’ll make stuff. You’ll make stuff up. Under the gun, over a barrel, you’ll come up with out-of-the-box ways to do life, one creation at a time.
We all are creative. Life demands it of us. In every country, in every language, in every industry, those of us who are navigating life with any amount of success are creative success stories.
We are all creative. Life demands it of us.
So when we say to others — or, worse, to ourselves — that we are not creative, it is the worst kind of self-sabotage. It is like saying we are bad at breathing.
Creativity is the reigning darling of business education topics. Fortune 500 companies like Hewlett Packard, Sears, and GE are hiring creative trainers, and business schools report booming enrollment in creativity courses. The rush to creativity has some saying the BFA (bachelor of fine arts) is the new MBA. (Hooray, maybe my kid’s tuition dollars will not be wasted!)
Since it was published in 2005, Daniel Pink’s bestseller “A Whole New Mind; Why Right Brainers Will Rule the Future” has been translated into 20 languages. I don’t mind saying, it is a bible of my business life. But as fast as it has educated many about the importance of the creative mind, it has given others labels and insecurities about their creative gifts.
Every day, I meet people who say they are not creative — successful, innovative business people who slot themselves as “left-brain and linear” as an excuse to opt out of creatively-charged projects. Take, for example, my accountant friend who plays in a band on the weekend, but says she needs to stick to numbers at work because she is not the “right-brain type.” Can she hear herself?
Claim your creativity. Find your strongest creative muscles, so you flex and celebrate them.
Are you a problem solver? Are you good at reframing information so others can understand it? Can you summarize complexity or expand on simplicity? Can you add color or light to a conversation? Can you build consensus? Can you find the poetry in the culture of your organization? These are powerful, valuable creative skills.
Sure, creativity is writing songs and painting pictures and inventing new products, but this isn’t the creativity that counts most. I call it creativity showing off. Give me day-to-day creativity any day, because that is what builds companies, raises children, and changes the world.
At its most basic, creativity is the act of adapting. It is the skill we employ to make subtle movements to adjust to things we can’t control — like using cinnamon when we are out of nutmeg.
At its most noble, creativity is prayer. It is a sweet, nourishing connection with our creator that celebrates our most amazing inherited magical powers.
Becky Blades is Chairman of Trozzolo Communications Group and Owner of Travels With Lola and Ze Jolie: