I’ve had so many discussions on creativity and been surprised by how many people say they’re not creative. I call bullish*t on that! Everyone has a spark of creativity within them — often it just needs igniting and the flames fanned a little.
Let me tell you a story…
“A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away….”Oops, no! Sorry, that was Star Wars! I was remembering when I first went into business. It was 1994 — so not quite so long ago!
To set myself up, I bought an Apple Computer
Everyone insisted I was crazy!
My first Mac was an LC11
Even the fact that I can remember its name after all these years should tell you something. It had 2 MB of RAM. Whoa! Later I got it upgraded to 4 MB! (And no, those aren’t typos.) To put things in perspective, today, my iPhone has 256 Gigabits (GB). It makes me wonder how we managed to do anything in those days with so little ‘power’!
I loved everything about my Mac
It looked beautiful, and Apple’s integrated system seemed so intuitive that using it felt like playing and having fun. I could create whatever had in my head, without having to think about the underlying operating system.
Most companies at that time were investing in Microsoft and compatible hardware, and the Microsoft-based P.C I used in my day job, with its A, B, C and D drives (Sorry can’t remember how many drives!) felt convoluted and clumsy. Using it was a pain; rather than it being a tool to help me do my job more easily, I felt like its lackey.
I had to hold my mouth just right to get any kind of decent output. And if I made a mistake, I’d have to go back to the start. It resembled the ‘Go to jail’ card in Monopoly: ‘Do Not Pass Go, Do Not Collect $200’. And that screen! Black with green fonts — hideous and offensive!
Mac owners were considered rebellious and unconventional
And I loved that!
In 1997 Apple, who was about to go under, launched their ‘Think Different,’ ad campaign. Richard Dreyfuss voiced,
“Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They’re not fond of rules. And they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can’t do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones who do.”
It ranked among the all-time most successful advertising campaigns.
Why it so appealed to me
The Think Different campaign summed up exactly how I felt about myself. The crazy people referred to in the ad — the round pegs in square holes — despite, or because of, their craziness — have had huge and positive effects on the world. I loved the idea that, as a Mac user, I could associate myself in some way with those people.
Apparently, many others felt the same way because the campaign resulted in an enormous number of people moving from the ‘dark side’ 😜 to became Apple users. It was like joining the rebel alliance against the Empire of Bland Computing.
It upsets me when people say they aren’t creative
Everyone has unique talents and gifts to share with humanity. Creativity is like the Force; it’s strong in all of us. You just need to tap into your inner Yoda or Jedi Master.
An individual’s traumatic experiences may be the creative catalyst for bringing about positive change. Such people foster movements to help victims cope with similar situations. Some establish organisations dedicated to preventing similar traumas happening to others. There are many creative individuals who help develop our planet in remarkable ways.
“Creativity is intelligence having fun.” – Albert Einstein.
The inventors, developers, designers, engineers, poets, trainers, artists, musicians, writers, etc. I could go on, but then I’d have to list everyone on the planet! Everyone can contribute creatively to the evolution of humankind. Everybody can help in their own uniquely creative ways. And if you’re a person who thinks you’re not creative — think again!
The only definition of creativity is the use of the imagination to create something
There’s no-one on the planet who hasn’t brought into being something from their imagination. But, if you’d like to be more creative, here are six ways to discover your inner Jedi.
#1 Learn to use your tools
When you’re skilled in using the tools that enable your creativity, you’re free to let your creativity run riot! If you’re feeling creative but struggling with using an application on your computer, a new tool you bought, or an instrument you are not yet familiar with, you’re likely to become crazy frustrated!
That’s not what you want.
It’s important to set some time aside to learn and practice using your tools until you have some proficiency with them. Once you’ve done this, you can focus on bringing your ideas to fruition. Otherwise, your thinking gets split between enabling your creativity and aggravation with the new equipment. Learning to use new tools is like trying to handle a light sabre. It might feel tricky at first, but with practice, you’ll become talented enough for the Jedi Order.
#2 Cultivate and allow your creativity
No-one can tell you what’s creative and what’s not, or when you should be creative and when you shouldn’t. As humans, we are inherently creative.
“You’re only given a little spark of madness, you mustn’t lose it.” — Robin WIlliams
It’s important to notice different aspects of your creativity. From composing impromptu shower symphonies to drawing stick-figure masterpieces, your creative prowess knows no bounds. Embrace the quirkiness! These are all examples of creativity. You don’t have to replicate the Mona Lisa to be thought of as creative. Learn how your mind works so you can tap into your creativity more easily.
# 3 Move!
Go for a walk, a swim or take a shower. Look out and into the distance. Go outside and look at the stars or the clouds. Do some gentle exercise (or some strenuous exercise, if that’s your thing.)
Sitting at your desk, staring at a screen or a blank sheet of paper until your eyes bleed, or you achieve total rigidity, does absolutely nothing for creativity. Get moving, and the ideas will flow like the Force that is strong within you! Many people get fantastic ideas when they move and do something different.
#4 Get out of your comfort zone!
Comfort zones are great for Netflix marathons, but for creativity, it’s like choosing the same old flavour at an intergalactic ice cream parlour.
Try something new. Embrace diverse experiences: Travel to different places, taste exotic cuisines, or try activities you’ve never done before. New experiences stimulate the brain and provide fresh perspectives, fueling your creativity.
#5 Keep a Creative Journal:
You could maintain a journal where you jot down your thoughts, ideas, and observations. This is a fantastic way to capture fleeting inspirations and insights. Plus, it’s a safe space to doodle, sketch, or even write snippets of quirky humour!
#6 Break Routine and Embrace Play:
Routine can be the enemy of creativity. Try shaking things up from time to time. Playful activities like improv games, puzzles, or even a spontaneous dance party can stimulate creative thinking. And if you dare to have a dance-off in the lunchroom at work, may the groove be with you! Even my parrot can’t resist a lunchtime boogie!
I love working with the creative, crazy, misfits, rebels and troublemakers!
I see those words as positive. These descriptions fit many of my coaching clients! It takes one to know one, as they say! Because without these people, society would never advance. I love coaching crazy people, who want to move from jobs that tie down their spirit and hinder their creativity.
If you’re one of those who want to express your creativity in the world, get in touch or visit the Coaching and Mentoring page. I’m on a mission to liberate the inner Jedi in all of us. If you’re ready to unleash your creative force and uplift your spirit, give me a shout. Together, we’ll make the galaxy a more imaginative place!
Yes, I still love to use Mac/Apple, and it’s a lot easier to share stuff with PCs than when I started out in 1994. Here’s my current setup. It’s MacBook Pro running a 27 inch Apple Thunderbolt Display which is over 10 years old.
So, in the words of Yoda himself, 😜
“Your unique creative journey, embrace you must, for in creativity, the true force of your potential, find it you will.”
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