Tuesday, April 30, 2013

A Crash Course on Creativity - Week 2

Welcome to Week 2  -  Observation: Are You Paying Attention?

In this week's class, Tina is trying to get us to open our eyes and not live on autopilot so much.  Part of being more creative is noticing more about what is going on around you.

Here is a short 3 minute video where Tina talks about people who think they are lucky versus those that don't and how that affects what they see and do:  "Paying Attention".

This next video really hits home for me as I love to travel alone.  When I do that, I am hyper aware of my surroundings and the most amazing things happen to me.  In this short 4 minute video, Tom Kelley, a partner in IDEO, discusses how "Thinking Like a Traveler" changes your view, and consequently, makes you more creative and open to opportunities.

"Thinking Like a Traveler" video

He quotes Marcel Proust in the video to explain the phenomenon of paying attention, "The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes".

If you can have a higher state of awareness, you will see more opportunities.

I know it sounds like magic, but put into action, it opens up doors and new experiences.


Tuesday, April 23, 2013

A Crash Course on Creativity - Week 1

As promised, I will be taking you through an abbreviated version of “A Crash Course on Creativity” offered by Stanford’s Venture Lab and taught by Professor Tina Seelig.  You can still sign up on line and participate if you like.

To get a great overview of the course and get started (and feel some of Tina’s contagious energy), watch her TED video.   

The reason I love this course is because I think creativity can change how you view your life and they way you live it.

In the first assignment, Tina mentions “that the renowned American inventor Alan Kay famously said, ‘The best way to predict the future is to invent it.’ We are all inventors of our own future. And creativity is at the heart of invention.”

So, to begin being creative, you need to remind yourself that there is always more than one answer to a question or to a problem in life.

Tina uses this simple example.  If you ask someone, “what does 5 + 5 equal?”,  there is only one answer.  If you ask, “what 2 numbers add up to 10?”, there are a myriad of answers.  

Her point, “The way you ask the question determines the answers you get.”

Consider this next time you are stuck.  See if there isn’t a different way to look at the situation and “open up the box”.  Just being aware that you have the ability to create more possibilities can sometimes be empowering in and of itself.

Just be aware, you can get “unstuck” by adding a little creativity to the situation.

More next week.


Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Crash Course on Creativity

I am very excited to be a part of an online class that is offered by Stanford and will begin next Monday, April 22nd.  Professor Tina Seelig will be teaching the class.  Tina is a phenomenal leader and you will find her energy is contagious and the concepts she explores are thought provoking and fun!

"Crash Course on Creativity" is free and will run for six weeks.  It is an online course based on much of the design thinking that is taught at Stanford's Institute of Design.  These concepts and more are part of Tina's new book, "inGenius: A Crash Course on Creativity".

What I love about this course is that it helps you look at life in a different and more creative way.  For me, it helps me get unstuck.

This is a class you can take alone or sign up with others.  You can choose the amount of time you commit to the class or even just audit it.

For those of you that don't want to enroll and try it out, I will be doing a short blog piece for the next six weeks summarizing the content.  It will include a short five minute video and a quick summary of the concept.

I have found so many of these concepts and tools to be life changing, but I know everyone's time these days is limited, so I thought I would just summarize the ideas for you if you don't have time to take the class.

If you want more background information, you can read the article from the San Francisco Chronicle, "Stanford Professor Teaches Students to Have That Aha Moment".

Hope you will join the class or read my quick posts in the next six weeks to come.


To enroll in the class or find out more, you can click here: