Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Creativity: Leveraging Your Resources

I once heard that leveraging your resources is one of the most effective ways of being successful. When it comes to creativity, I think that this is even more true. Here are some thoughts:

  • Look around and see your resources. Many times we miss seeing the resources at our disposal because we are too focused on the task. A few years ago I was invited to lead a weekend conference for the youth staff at a church in Nashville. My closing topic was "101 Creative Ideas for Student Ministry". Desiring to show that all people can be creative, I chose to develop 101 fresh ideas by simply using what I had in my office. I chose objects, photos, t-shirts, a bag of cookies, books, etc. (remember, I was a youth pastor so my office was a bit of a cabinet of curiosities). I compiled my list of ideas and shared!
  • Don't say you need to have the newest tools to be creative, rather creatively use the tools you have to meet your needs. Many people can't wait for the newest gadget, software upgrade or tech tool, saying that this will help their creativity. Use your mind to be creative, and allow your tools to be the vehicles by which you express your creativity. I know of a guy who recorded an entire CD on a 10 year old 8-track recorder, and mixed it on Garage Band. It turned out pretty good! 
  • Use your relationships to stimulate your creativity. Simply being in relationship with others and interacting with them is fertile ground for creativity. Bouncing ideas or problems off others is a great way to gain clarity and confirmation. I often leave a conversation with fresh ideas or solutions to problems, many times unrelated to the conversation I just had.
 Your ability to be creative should never be limited to your tools, or lack of them. Remember, Adam gave names to all of the animals in the Garden of Eden. And he did it without even a fig leaf.

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