Commentary: Innovation through creativity

Former Spanish painter, sculptor, printmaker, ceramicist, and stage designer, Pablo Picasso, once said that “Every child is an artist; the problem is staying an artist when you grow up.”
Lewis Ndichu
Lewis Ndichu

Former Spanish painter, sculptor, printmaker, ceramicist, and stage designer, Pablo Picasso, once said that “Every child is an artist; the problem is staying an artist when you grow up.”

Inspiration and creativity drive your entrepreneurial spirit. Without original ideas and strategies, businesses lose their unique identities. However, it can be difficult to keep the creative fire stoked on a daily basis.

The last thing you want is for your inspiration to grow stagnant. So, how do you ensure you continually move forward with newer perspectives and fresh ideas? In my previous article, I mentioned of Sir. Henry Ford, the late Steve Jobs, Mark Zukernbeg, Bill Gates among many others. Here is their secret.

Be playful

It is nearly impossible to create on demand. Consider a writer staring at an empty page, paralysed by writer’s block. It is a frustrating, helpless feeling when the creative muse has left the building.

However, rather than try to work your way through that block, you should focus on your playful side. Often, writers will give themselves playful activities or word games to break out of the crippling writer’s block. Encouraging that playful spirit is essential to honing your creativity and developing strategies to avoid a stale frame of mind.

Consider these activities.

Team sports can be great for physical activity, social contact, and encouraging focus. Great ideas can hit you when you’re fielding a fly ball or nailing a jump shot. Or try to talk to your friends around you and you will be shocked by the great ideas they have. Exploring your hobbies can open up your creativity. Whether you enjoy painting, woodworking, mountain climbing, unstructured ventures allow you to lose yourself. You are seeking activities that let your mind flow easily.

Keep paper and drawing materials on hand. By drawing, however badly), you are encouraging your creative flow. Don’t always rely on written notes. Sometimes, when you try to immediately translate an idea into words, you actually inhibit your inspiration. Make your thinking visible through doodles, sketches, and drafts.

Don’t be afraid of embarrassing yourself. Creativity can arrive in many ways. Some people readily “act out” their ideas. Some people hit a roadblock and are able to sing their way through their issues. It might sound silly, but these methods encourage you to take a new approach through spontaneous action. Consider it in order to improve your inner creative genius. Sometimes you have to be willing to go beyond your embarrassment to achieve.

Take a cue from children. They get it. Give a four-year-old a cardboard box, which is quickly moulded into a car or spaceship. Give a child a tree house, and you’ve got a pioneer or pirate on your hands. For business owners to kick-start creativity, they need to consciously decide to bring playful activities into their daily lives.

Eliminate creativity killers

Creativity requires a flow of thought. If that flow is interrupted, it becomes incredibly difficult to get back into the state of mind that lets loose the river of ideas. To maintain focus and peak creativity, you need to do the following:

Eliminate distractions. While the Internet contains a wealth of information and ideas, it can severely inhibit your own creativity. You should make time in your day to go on a limited-access diet. Shut off technology and see what happens to your well of ideas.

Be aware of how you take constructive criticism. While it is exciting (and sometimes required) to receive feedback from your ideas, it can also kill your creative streak. If your confidant responds negatively to your ideas, it is difficult not to dwell on it. On the other hand, if you refuse to pay attention when someone points out what is obviously not working, then you are condemning yourself to future frustration as well. Keep in mind that only you know the full intent and scope of your work.

New ideas, insights, and strategies depend on a creative mind. One of the challenges for business owners is promoting that creativity through a playful spirit. Incorporating opportunities for play, rather than scheduling it out of your life can inspire cognitive and business growth.

When you lose opportunities for playfulness, you’re losing chances to exercise the part of your brain that will produce your next amazing idea. I am reminded by Walden university most distinguished professor of psychology, William James that almost every subject will save you. The good professor further elaborates “If you care enough for a result, you will most certainly attain it. If you wish to be good, you will be good. If you wish to be rich you will be. If you wish to become learned, you will be.

In other words, when you passionate about fewer definite goals, you have a higher chance of realising them.

Lewis Ndichu is young entrepreneur and founder of Easy Goal Entrepreneurs Networks

 

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