Creativity and a Clear MindBy Chris Ward
A few weeks ago, I was asked to talk about how I unwind and reveal my perspective on the importance of unwinding. I was so grateful to do this, because I had an opportunity to express one of the biggest challenges that many creative professionals face everyday.
Most professions require you to draw upon career and educated experiences to create a solution for the problem in that moment. You see, most professions are kind of like a high school Algebra class. Let’s say you’ve been assigned to work through problem #14 on page 112. Even though you may not know the answer off the top of your head, you’ve been taught how to solve it. By following and working through those directions, you’ll eventually reach the answer.
Well, now imagine if someone asked you to solve problem #14 on page 112 in three different ways with three different answers and all of the different answers HAD to be correct, useable and provable!
This is what most creative professionals have to do, day in and day out.
My quote that inspired this post was “the best solutions usually hide inside the clearest mind.” When it comes to being a creative problem solver, having a clear mind is very important. Being able to make decisions and suggestions, on behalf of others, requires clarity of thought and focus.
Everyday I have to look at a problem like “We need more donors” or “We want to grow our impact” or "Our attendance is dropping” and present options that will have these very important effects. I have to be able to see through the eyes of a customer, a donor, a non-profit, etc. I have to present options that address the problem through the eyes of the speaker, or conversely through the eyes of the audience. I have to present options that address the organization’s needs through just the hope of the outcome, or an option that exhibits evidence of the proof of its impact. And, all of these options have to work towards the goal of the client, because you never know which one they will select.
One of my favorite projects that exhibits a solution that utilized an unconventional perspective was the book cover I did for Gary Genard for his book Fearless Speaking. The solution they chose solved the problem of “how to best represent the anxieties of public speaking” by seeing the outcome that was LEAST desired! It worked really well and made people grin along the way!
Here’s a look:
Here at The A Group, we take our work very seriously because we have great compassion for the lives that our clients impact and the role they play in the world. We know that the solutions we present to you today can make an eternal difference for someone tomorrow, and for that reason we commit ourselves to a creative focus that leads to the best recommendations we can make.
So how is your creative process measuring up? Are you working through your problems with a clear mind or are you stuck and confused? I’d love to help. Submit any creative questions you may have and I’ll share more of my experience with you!
I look forward to working with you and helping your organization with a clear mind and effective solutions.