Saturday, October 6, 2012

Enemies of Creativity

Nike ran an ad campaign some time ago and the tag line became a buzz word .. "just do it".  It sounds so simple, so easy ... just do it, whatever "it" may be.

Our parents/elders, for the most part, exhorted us to "think before you act", in a well meaning attempt to keep us out of danger.  Again, sounds simple, but then, how many of us think beyond opportunities that then pass us by?

What does one do now?  Think first act later?  Do it now before the door closes?  What guidelines do you follow?  My response to all of the above is "it depends".  We often create our own obstacles and hesitations ... is this a good practice, or not?  It depends.  What is the difference between danger and opportunity?  I recently read the following blog piece that may help us to think differently about risk taking, fear and opportunity:

                            Enemies of Creativity

What do you think? 




  1. Hi Carol, good posting! Will put a "Take at Least One" notices up in my office. Just coming off a mandatory two week break for burn out at work and it occurs I'd become too concise in my following of orders and my mind had left on break a week earlier than me.

    Chance at work is to take management at its word and "engage in a dialog" with staff and admin about changes that need making. Keep doing this and have become too easily defeated by being told to be quiet. Wonder what other people in this course are silenced by? In some ways it might be useful to stifle oneself in the face of opposition for the sake of survival (or continued employment, relationship, etc) except it seems a bad habit to fall into. Quiet for this, quiet for that, suddenly quiet for everything.

    Anyway thought this might be an interesting topic for the gang:
    How to Break Through Your Creative Block: Strategies from 90 of Today’s Most Exciting Creators by Maria Popova

    And since I'm on a topic without direction I've run into a need to study change and Change Leadership I see you have studied. Most of the books and papers on change cycle around motivational trickery tinkering at the surface while I'd prefer to start at a deeper level. Any suggestions?

    Finally from Brain Pickings Writer Douglas Rushkoff on creative block: "...because we live in a social world with other people whose perceptual apparatus needs to be penetrated with our ideas, we must formulate, strategize, order, and then articulate. It is that last part that is visible as output or progress, but it only represents, at best, 25 percent of the process." Anyone want to take a shot at what this means?

  2. I don't know if it's because I'm one of the newer generations, but I'm a kind of "just do it" girl. Life is about taking chances and ending up someplace you never expected, but loving every minute of it. Sure you should calculate the risks involved, but if it's something you are passionate about or you just feel a tug in that direction, go with your gut. I don't think it means move to California with $10 in your pocket, but maybe you have a chance to go to pa prestigious school out there, or you got a chance to work at a high profile job. Do it! Take a chance and jump off that cliff, you never know what's waiting at the bottom. I think the reason so many people look back while on their death bed and regret their life is because they didn't follow their heart. Life is tough, but don't give up on your hopes and dreams or you'll have no reason for living. That's my take. I think if more people followed their heart and took chances, there would be a lot more happier people in the world.

  3. Agree that chances should be taken. I like to think of myself as a risk taker but not without some deliberation. Alternately, my ability to calculate risk or recognize where it will take me has turned out to be an illusion. The trick seems to be to just do it and be resilient enough to come out of it alive--literally in some cases.