It’s a funny thing about creativity. The very things that make you successful can be the things that stifle the spirit of discovery.
So much of our work is about busyiness, about doing things whether they really make sense or not, just to look like you’re doing something productive. Answering emails and checking blog posts and checking in with teammates all look productive, but they fill the time that creativity could use.
Creativity needs open space to emerge. It needs to bubble up from the subconscious and it can’t do that if you fill the space with email and social media and the minutiae of work. You have to let go and you have to make space and you have to let creativity have a clear path.
Find something to do that engages your body but leaves your mind free. Go for a drive or go for a run. Wash the dishes or walk the dog or wander through a garden. Don’t think too much. Don’t plan and don’t prepare and don’t worry about results. Just let your mind roam.
It will come back to you with new ideas, new thoughts and new perceptions. You cannot plan for it or set quotas or think in terms of goals. Read a book. Weed the garden. Play catch with a grandchild.
Don’t hurry it or look for it too hard. If you wait and you are patient that good idea will form just out of sight. While you are doing something else it will glide into view at the edge of your vision.
The magic of creativity is this. When we seek it, creativity hides from us. When we make a place where it can land gently, creativity comes to visit.