Ways to Kill Your Creativity by Darl Arni
We are all creative. I know some of you don’t believe it and I hear you groaning right now! Sure, most of us are not creative in the Big C ways of Einstein, Disney, Mozart, da Vinci, or Edison, but we can be creative in the way we solve everyday dilemmas and the original way we choose to live.
My daughter says she is not creative. Yet I see her creativity displayed when she helps others with relationship drama, uses her sense of style by pulling together pieces out of her closet into a truly original outfit, and when she gives me advice on color combinations when I need a second opinion.
Just this week she brought home a stack of high school Art I projects and I was awed by her work and innovative solutions to the problems posed by her teacher. Some of her denial comes from having a crazy, creative Mom which makes her feel, “If I am not creative like Mom then I am not creative at all.”
Being creative is not about being like or as good as someone else who is labeled ‘creative’. Such a limited definition prevents us from recognizing our potential for creative thought, problem solving and innovation.
Hasn’t the economic climate of the past couple of years shown us that we must all be innovative and proactively creative as we deal with dwindling budgets, layoffs, world disasters and reinventing our lives?
Not convinced? Then by all means feel free to conduct your life according to the following list.
- Expect Rewards. Don’t do anything creative unless you are getting rewarded. At all times ask yourself “What’s in it for me?”
- Impose Stress/Pressure. Always set unrealistic goals and continually chastise yourself for not measuring up.
- Extreme Competition. Cling to the belief that there can be only one winner in every situation and know you are a loser if you don’t beat the other guy. Desperate win or loss situations are guaranteed to squelch creative thoughts.
- Try Not to Offend Anyone. Be safe and never speak up or share an idea because it might offend or go against the wishes of someone on your team, a co-worker, your boss, a family member, your Aunt Ida, your neighbor, etc.
- Make Lots of Rules. The more rules you have in place, the less likely you are to veer out into the world of creative thought. Whatever you are doing must meet strict specifications and never, I repeat never, question a rule!
- Become an Expert. Be convinced you know so much that there is no need for you to learn, try anything new or have an original thought. Yup, that’ll work for sure.
- Feel Guilty. Use guilt to persuade yourself that there is something more worthwhile to do with your time than waste it on creative thought. Isn’t there a yard to be mowed or shouldn’t you check your Facebook page again?
- Watch the Clock. If it works for boiling pots it will work for creativity. Check the time every five minutes and you can kiss that pesky creativity goodbye!
- Become a Perfectionist. Try your best to do everything exactly right and if you fall short believe you are a failure. Also try repeating to yourself 100 times a day, “I will never be good enough.”
- Wait for Instructions. Never attempt anything unless someone else tells you exactly how to do it because you will undoubtedly fail. How can you be creative if nobody tells you how? Shouldn’t there be a manual someplace?
Practice these ten easy steps and I guarantee you will be creativity free!
© 2010 Darla Arni is a Speaker, Artist and Author (and a friend of Meggin for over 30 years + they share the same birthday).
And to help you with your productivity you may be interested in the teleseminar Identify and Capitalize on Your Own Productivity ‘Hot Spots’. Throughout your days and your weeks, you have “hot spots” where you have the potential to be optimally productive. It is during these times that you can be “in the zone,” working at “Mach 10,” and getting things done that are of the most benefit to you and your company.