If you look back throughout history, you can see how work evolved period by period.
The first period of work was comprised of family occupation by default, meaning you were for the most part born to do your parentâ€™s job. If your dad was a barber, you became a barber. A blacksmith, you became a blacksmith. A farmer, you became a farmer. Very few were able to digress from this path due to limited opportunities.
Then the industrial revolution hit. Workers were needed by companies to work in factories and workers usually stayed with that one company until they retired with a pension.
Now we live in a period of globalization and technology. Work is slowly being outsourced overseas because itâ€™s becoming more cost effective for companies to do so and technology is slowly replacing human workers as well. I remember the first time that the aspect of technology replacing human workers really hit me was when I saw self checkout stands for the first time at a supermarket. It was an eerie feeling knowing that a clerk could easily be replaced by a machine.
Men and women hold a variety of jobs now throughout their life. Staying with one company until you retire is becoming rarer nowadays. Jobs are not as secure as they were before due to frequent corporate downsizing and technological advances.
The best defense you have against these times of change is developing your creativity.
I simply define creativity in the context of this article as engaging in problem solving by doing the best you can with what youâ€™ve got.
Itâ€™s the one skill that canâ€™t be replicated, the one skill you can rely on to survive, and the one skill that acts like an ace in your pocket. Creative people will always be in demand in the workforce, and even if youâ€™re not an employee, but an entrepreneur, it probably applies even more so in your case.
If you think about it, jobs that can be found higher up in the employment ladder are those jobs that require creativity. The ones that donâ€™t have been systemized to a point that all a company needs to do is properly train someone in the procedures in order for them to correctly execute it.
If you can figure out how to cut costs without cutting jobs, thatâ€™s creativity. If you figure out how to do things faster at your job while maintaining quality, thatâ€™s creativity. If you figure out new ideas that will greatly help other people, thatâ€™s creativity. No matter what job you have, you can always exercise your creativity and improve upon it in any way shape or form and when you find yourself doing so, youâ€™ll find yourself climbing the ladder as well.
I like to think of creativity as mankindâ€™s superpower as it has the capability to transform us from mere mortals into superheroes.
So what are some activating forces for creativity?
First and foremost is imagination. I highly recommend taking some time before you go to sleep or setting aside some time everyday to just let your mind soar free. Imagine anything and everything. There are no rules. Just dream. The world in your head is your oyster. Itâ€™s your world with your rules. This â€śstretchesâ€ť your mind so to speak, making it more flexible and less rigid in its way of thinking, allowing you to view things from multiple points of views and possibilities. It was said that Einstein imagined what it would be like if he would look into a mirror that was traveling with him at the speed of light. Would he be able to see his own reflection or would he see nothing at all because the light reflecting off his face would never reach the mirror? – (a bit of a head scratcher I know.) â€“ This question led him down a path that eventually helped him come up the theories that he is now famous for.
The second activating force of creativity is clarity. Imagine that you have the world’s most advanced supercomputer in your house. It could give out any answer to any question you give it, provided the question you ask of it is crystal clear. The reason why clarity activates creativity is because time and brainpower are not wasted on trying to figure out what exactly has to be accomplished. All of that time and brainpower can be set aside to fuel creativity.
The third activating force of creativity is faith, or knowing that you can find a solution, that you will think of the ideas, that you will find the answer you are seeking. You shoot yourself in the foot if you didnâ€™t cultivate this mentality. To give you a visual, think of faith as the amniotic fluid that surrounds and feeds the baby of creativity. It nurtures it, supports it, and protects it. Without it, creativity cannot survive.
The last activating force of creativity is simply acting on the ideas that come about from your creativity because that will jump start your creativity even more. When your brain gets more input and experience from actions taken on the ideas generated, it can then adjust course as necessary or further refine ideas or come up with entirely new ones based on the new information it processes.
To me, creativity is all about flow and flow starts happening when all these forces are activated and the resulting ideas are acted upon. And like the say, the more you use your creativity, the better you get at it.
I firmly believe that creativity will be one of the top skills and qualities that employers will be looking for during the future and as for the people who want to start their own businesses, itâ€™s already a requirement. The sooner you start developing your creativity, the better you become at it. So start today.
Act on the ideas.
Let it flow.
And you will find yourself cultivating your superpower of creativity.