When we talk of creativity, we often mean art, films, stories, and songs, not a corporate world full of cubes.
I do create in those talked of ways – stories, essays, poems, and songs. I make videos to inspire. I create adventures like traveling through the Yukon then I write, speak and make videos about the journey. I feel creative writing this blog post and teaching others about the internet and social media.
But then there’s my day job. My work as a new initiatives project manager and consultant that I’ve often thought off as “just work”. It’s what I do to fund my creative adventures. Even though I’ve been an independent consultant most of my career, it’s the cubicle I’ve longed to escape from.
A few weeks ago, my project team pulled off a superhuman feat and made a deadline that was unexpectedly moved up three weeks. As I drove home tired and basking in the glow of their success, I suddenly realized that managing people, projects and initiatives is also creativity.
Being able to work with different kinds of people, coach them to be fantastic, calm them when they get wound up, encourage them to shine, herd them to a successful finish and sit back and enjoy their success – absolutely takes creativity.
I look back at some of my projects – managing website implementations at Mayo Clinic, producing a 1000 person dinner fundraising event for HRC, coordinating a John Beargrease sled dog race checkpoint, helping UCare get a health insurance product launched on the new health care exchange and I now see that it’s all creativity in action.
The lesson for me is that the walls we perceive are of our own making. We need only change our perception and our beliefs about ourselves and poof, our world shifts.
And that escape from cubicle nation, I’ve longed for? It begins in the mind. Creativity is wild energy that will not be contained in any box. It infuses life and flows everywhere. You simply need to open your senses and your mind and jump in.