No individual has any right to come into the world and go out of it without leaving behind him distinct and legitimate reasons for having passed through it.
George Washington Carver
Each January the world celebrates International Creativity Month – a month to remind individuals and organizations around the globe to capitalize on the power of creativity.
Unleashing creativity is vital for personal and business success in this age of accelerating change. Motivational speaker Randall Munson founded International Creativity Month to refocus attention to creatively improve business and personal activities.
January, the first month of the year, provides an opportunity to take a fresh approach to problem-solving and renew confidence in our creative capabilities.
About 52 percent of Americans consider themselves creative, but only 39 percent of Americans feel they’re living up to their creative potential. That’s one finding from a survey of 5,000 adults in the United States, the U.K., France, Germany, and Japan (1,000 participants each), conducted by the research firm Strategy One. Other findings include:
- 85 percent of Americans feel that creativity is the key to driving economic growth.
- 82 percent feel that the United States isn’t living up to its creative potential.
- 62 percent believe that our nation’s creativity is being stifled by our education system.
- 88 percent agree that everyone has the potential to be creative.
Overall, Japan is seen as the most creative country (according to 36 percent of the survey’s participants), with the U.S. in second place, named by 26 percent.
Time and money are the biggest obstacles, say Americans: 54 percent say lack of money prevents them from being creative, and 52 percent cite a lack of time.
We start out as pretty creative beings, as children let their imaginations take them to places they’ve never seen and do things that seem impossible. We encourage it as fun and playtime, but we should celebrate it as the potential for great discovery and accomplishment.
As Pablo Picasso, arguably one of the most creative artists who ever lived, said, “Every child is an artist; the problem is staying an artist when you grow up.”
Or maybe you can be inspired by another notable thinker, Dr. Seuss (aka Theodore Geisel): “Think left and think right and think low and think high. Oh, the thinks you can think up if only you try.”
Why do we begin to take fewer chances as “real life” sets in? You don’t have to give up on your creativity as you grow older. You just need to take better care of your brain. Here are some tips for staying mentally fit no matter what your age is:
- Limit exposure to stress. You may not be able to eliminate stress from your life entirely, but try to keep it in perspective. Stress can narrow your mental vision and decrease your ability to think differently. Learning how to relax and remain calm as you confront problems will help you find solutions more efficiently.
- Don’t multitask. Distractions and lack of focus are the enemies of creative thought. Train yourself to work on one task or problem at a time so you can think deeply about what you’re doing and use your whole brain.
- Rest your brain. Be careful not to focus your mind like a laser all the time. You need to give it some rest so it can refresh and recharge. Often, you’ll find the solution to a puzzle when you step back and allow your mind to work on it without the pressure of conscious thought.
- Exchange problems. At your next staff meeting have people write down their toughest problem, and drop them all in a hat. Then have everyone pick a problem from the hat and try to solve it. This can encourage people from different areas to get together and learn something about each other’s problems and skills.
Surrounding yourself with creative, imaginative people is a good strategy for success whether you’re an entrepreneur seeking innovation or an artist looking for inspiration. Watch for these vital traits:
- Curiosity. Question how things work, and why they work that way. Creative people always want to know more.
- Open-mindedness. Spend time with people who don’t reject new ideas just because they’re unfamiliar. They should always be up for trying something different.
- Flexibility. A lot of “new” ideas are actually combinations of existing concepts. Partner with colleagues who show a talent for putting things together in unexpected and unique ways.
- Confidence. Connect with people who are sure enough of their abilities to risk failure or embarrassment, but they’re ready to try again because they believe in themselves.
Mackay’s Moral: Start every day/year with a healthy dose of vitamin C – Creativity.
Harvey Mackay is the author of New York Times No. 1 bestsellers “Swim With The Sharks Without Being Eaten Alive” and “Beware the Naked Man Who Offers You His Shirt.” Both books are among the top 15 inspirational business books of all time, according to The New York Times. In total, Mackay’s books have sold 10 million copies worldwide, been translated into 37 languages, and sold in 80 countries. He has been chairman of MackayMitchell Envelope Co. since 1959.
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Walter Unger CCIM, CCSS, CCLS
I am a successful Commercial Investment Real Estate Broker in Arizona now for 20 years and I worked with banks and their commercial REO properties for 3 years. I am also a commercial landspecialist in Phoenix and a Landspecialist in Arizona.
WHETHER YOU LEASE OR OWN
NOW IS THE TIME FOR YOU TO EXPAND, UPGRADE OR INVEST.
we are at on the a rise of the cycle in Commercial Real Estate. so there is only one way and it’s called we are going up and now is the time for you to expand, upgrade or invest in Commercial Properties in Phoenix. The prices on deals I may get you will not be around forever.
WAITING TO SELL YOUR LAND ? TIMES CHANGE / IT’S TIME
We barely could give land away the last few years, but times are changing. Even in those meager years, I sold more land across the state than most other brokers. Before the real estate crash I was a land specialist in Arizona with millions of dollars of transactions, but then I had to change and also sell other commercial investment properties, which was fun, but I am a Commercial Landspecialist in Arizonal, a Commercial Land Specialist in Phoenix and love to sell land, one acre to thousands of acres.
If you have any questions about Commercial Investment Properties in Phoenix or Commercial Investment Properties in Arizona, I will gladly sit down with you and share my expertise and my professional opinion in Commercial Properties in Phoenix or Commercial Properties in Arizona with you.Obviously I am also in this to make money, but it could be a win-win situation for all of us.
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PLEASE NOTE, I CHANGED BROKERAGES BUT CELL PHONE AND E-MAIL STAY THE SAME.
Walter Unger CCIM
Associate Broker, West USA Commercial Real Estate Advisers
7077 E. Marilyn Road, Bldg 4, Suite 130
Scottsdale, AZ 85254
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