When you want to be more creative

In these times, I feel like some people are ridiculously busy and others are scrambling trying to find ways to fill their time. I am an avid jigsaw puzzler (and writer) and now I can’t find any to do! I have friends who are taking up knitting, reading more books, creating pottery, dancing with DVDs or filling in adult coloring books. I think it is wonderful we are fulfilling our creative spirits.

In a professional manner, this can be the perfect time to get creative and tap into our resourcefulness genes. Doing these kinds of activities on the side can help fuel our creative brain at work.

Before now, I feel like sometimes we just move from project to project trying to make some impact but I have struggled to think about a time I was really creative, really thinking outside of the normal construct in business.

Then, It dawned on me…I was creative and imaginative as a kid. Not to belly ache about walking through feet of snow to get to school (although I did in my snow suit and moon boots; remember those?), but as one of the first latch-key kids, I did have to entertain myself quite a bit. It probably explains why I talk to myself so much today. Hmmm…

I played house with a friend in the field across the street with nothing but an abandoned couch. I played army in the basement with a single ping pong table as “cover”. I made mud pies in the street (okay, maybe not the safest place to play and they were not very good to eat).

And, we played Monopoly, Life, Sorry, Trouble, Battleship, Risk, Aggravation, and Scattegories – although, I went 10 rounds with my brother once arguing that “Frantic” was actually a “state”, i.e., when we use the word to mean a condition. He argued that Florida was the only answer. Whatever. Fair warning: These games can get very contentious between siblings. In fact, I am sure I threw money at him more than once in Monopoly because of his Boardwalk and Park Place hotels. I could never get those! Back in the 70’s and 80’s, we had to be resourceful to have any fun.

Lately, I have been thinking about how to tap into that space again because we need to show some creativity to keep ourselves and our teams engaged. I think now, more than ever, is the time to play games at work.

How about starting a weekly trivia challenge about the company? About cities across the globe? About pop culture? Or, a contest for who can come up with the craziest business idea? Or, a challenge to share the most efficient home office? Or, a forum to share your most creative achievement in life? Or, how about developing your company’s buzzword bingo game (a great tool for new hire onboarding as well!)? What games have you started?

I am seeing more sharing and connecting now than when we were able to be face to face. I sincerely hope we keep playing games, sustain our creative and artistic hobbies we have started, and, most importantly, maintain the solid relationships we are building with one another. This will keep us sane and keep us generating great ideas!

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