“Creativity is the way I share my soul with the world.” – Brene Brown
How many times have you heard this statement in your life? “On this issue, we have to think outside the box”. So when we have a specific problem that we don’t have any solutions for, the best course of action is to think outside the box. Obviously, the idea there is needing to get creative and find a new direction to a problem. What happens when you can’t find a solution by thinking outside the box? By thinking and being more creative? What do you do then?
Have you ever thought about being creative inside the box? I’d be willing to bet that you have never thought of it way. I’d be willing to bet that you have never thought of it that way. I got this idea back in September to start a 30-day challenge of thinking inside the box. For the challenge, I had to shoot a video each day and post it. The box I created for myself was solely using my iPhone for my challenges. I could only shoot the videos and edit the videos on my iPhone as well as the days’ video idea would come from the word press prompt of the day. Talk about a box that’s in a box.
I learned many, many things about how to just shut up and get work done. The creative process of posting every day and only using these simple tools actually made it harder but in the end, I found that I can do anything that I put my mind to.
“You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have” – Maya Angelou
Let’s bring this back to a problem that you might be facing. Think about a problem that you don’t have a solution to you and that you’ve thought long and hard about, maybe even got creative but you still can’t find a solution. Maybe the solution is right in front of you and you’ve just been overthinking it. Over-thinking everything is something that I’m incredibly skilled at. I can overthink so much that it eventually becomes procrastination and I don’t get anything done. Is it possible that you’re over thinking the problem and that while you’re getting creative outside the box really you’re just procrastinating? I can’t answer that because that’s something you need to look at internally…are you really getting creative or are you just procrastinating?
“Being efficient without regard to effectiveness is the default mode of the universe.” – Tim Ferriss
Tim Ferriss once said it’s more important to be effective than efficient. It still applies to being creative inside the box because you’re freed up inside the box and you are being more effective versus just being efficient. I gave you an example about how I got creative inside the box regarding how I only allow myself to shoot the videos on my iPhone. For example, only edited them on my iPhone, they had to be a minute long and the idea had to come from some random word that I would have no idea of what it was until that day. This required me to be more effective than efficient but that’s the cool part. By being effective and just getting it done, I also became efficient. See how they can be one in the same?
Let’s use a different example, shall we? The version of the blog post that you are reading has been edited multiple times by multiple people. But could you have guessed that this started as a dictation or another word voice to text while I was driving from club to club? If you’d seen the very first version of this you could tell that it was my words going to the “paper” by voice to text. This is probably the best example of how not to be efficient on how to write a blog post. Once I record this from voice to text I have to edit it over and over again because it’s not voice to text is not a perfect system. Want to know what the best part it? The best part of this system is this is the most effective way to get the thoughts onto the page. This is the example of me being creative inside the box. I don’t have time to go sit at a coffee shop and spend hours upon hours writing my ideas down.
“There is a direct correlation between an increased sphere of comfort and getting what you want.” – Tim Ferriss
So I ask you again how can you be creative inside the box? How can you be more effective instead of being more efficient? Take a moment to let these ideas sink in. Take a moment to think about how to approach a problem you’ve been struggling with. Now stop thinking and start acting!