I’ve moved

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Childlike qualities

Hi

It probably seems as though I’ve been inactive for some time but in fact I moved site. I’m still with WordPress but you can now find all my blogs on my website at unglueyou.co.uk. My posts include ‘Creativity and well-being‘, also published as a collage story; and ‘A Cure for Kragle‘ (anyone who’s seen the Lego movie will know what kragle is) but for those of you who haven’t it’s the glue or ‘stuff’ that keeps us stuck in the same place.
I hope you will join me over the road, I would love to have you visit.

If you were already following me I have moved you across to the new site, this way you will continue to receive notifications of new posts. If not, and you like what you read please subscribe via the website, many thanks.

Retreat to advance

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In my last post I talked about pausing to reflect on the year just passed before hurtling headlong into the next one.

I like to use collaging for this but appreciate there are different approaches, so why not try:

Writing it down- if you’re feeling particularly creative you could do it as a poem

They don’t have to be life changing achievements, anything counts, like making time to go for a walk. I managed that for 4 months and I’m happy about that, as it means I can do it again.

Recording it on your phone
If you have one that allows you to do that. Play music in the background to add atmosphere if you’d like.

Using your phone to do a short video 
If you feel confident enough and like social sharing, you could post it on YouTube, Facebook or twitter. Remember to take care of yourself though and only share what you’re happy for others to know. 

Reflecting with a family member or friend 
Sometimes those closest to us can see our achievements and how we’ve changed more easily than we can. Only ask someone you trust to be honest with kindness. We may not always hear what we want to, but sometimes we still need to hear it.

Keeping it positive
We all have negative things happen to us, but if we can find the learning in it then we can move forward with renewed strength and hope. Reflecting allows the time and space to do that.

If you have your own way of reflecting, I’d love to hear about it.

As you move into 2014 consider keeping a ‘Good book’ or ‘Jar of blessings’, it’s quick and easy. Each day make note of one good, positive or beautiful thing that has happened. When you look back a year on, or throughout the year, you will realise that there can be beauty in every day if we look for it.

Wishing you all a great end to 2013, and after rest and reflection a positive start to 2014.

We Say We Like Creativity, but We Really Don’t

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There’s a line in this article that keeps me motivated it says ‘Truly creative ideas take a very long time to be accepted. The better the idea, the longer it might take.’ Sometimes I think it’s because people don’t understand the idea or find it hard to believe it will work because it’s such a different approach. These are the challenges I am facing with my creative business, but I’m in it for the long haul. I’d be interested to know if anyone else has had a similar experience.

World Creativity and Innovation Week April 15-21

See on Scoop.itCreativity and Learning Insights

In the United States we are raised to appreciate the accomplishments of inventors and thinkers—creative people whose ideas have transformed our world.

Marci Segal, MS‘s insight:

Are you like the many written about in this article? Do you say you want creativity on one hand and then, on the other don’t really want it at all? Is that what it’s like in your organization?

See on www.slate.com

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Swap Resolutions for Reflections

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It may seem early to be talking about the New Year but Christmas will have come and gone before we know it, with the New Year hot on its heels.

At the beginning of a New Year there is always the temptation, sometimes even pressure to set resolutions and embark on creating a ‘New You!’ But I find that life with all its vagaries cannot be trusted to fit neatly with any resolutions or firm plans I may put in place.

So instead I take the view that there is far greater value in looking back and reflecting on the past year. I trust my past, knowing it will not change or provide me with any unexpected surprises, therefore any lessons learnt there will serve me well going forward. By reflecting I can capture this knowledge, with the opportunity to also celebrate achievements and take a trip down memory lane, with all its delights and disappointments.

The reflecting also helps me have a sense of direction for the year ahead. Informing me where I can continue to learn and grow and areas or people I might want to retreat from. By constantly forging ahead, setting new resolutions, challenges and goals, without taking the time to pause and reflect we do ourselves a great disservice. Losing the opportunity to see how we have changed, capture what we have learnt and enjoy what we have achieved.

Resolutions for reflectionsTHIS NEW YEAR 2014, SWAP YOUR RESOLUTIONS FOR REFLECTIONS

Collage art is a great way of reflecting, it’s creative, relaxing and needs no past experience or artistic skills. You just need to be curious, open to the creative process and willing to treat yourself to that precious gift of ‘time to yourself’ to create the collage.

FOR SPECIAL OFFERS ON COLLAGE SESSIONS BOOK HERE

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“There are various myths about creativity. One is that only special people are creative; another is that creativity is just about the arts; a third is that it’s all to do with uninhibited ‘self-expression’. None of these is true. On the contrary, everyone has creative capacities; creativity is possible in whatever you do, and it can require great discipline and many different skills.”

Thanks to my friend Emma for letting me know about the article by Ken Robinson writing in the Guardian on 17th May; this quote is from the article.

Creativity Myths

Passion, Inspiration, Play, and Creativity

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The Creativity Post Co-founder Scott Barry Kaufman talks about the importance of passion, inspiration, play, and creativity.
I’m sharing this video as I thought it was really interesting, informative and in line with my perspective on creativity. I liked his proposal that as adults we should still be silly, getting messy and put lots of ideas on paper. To help my clients creative expression, I promote this approach. Encouraging them to give themselves permission to let their child like imagination have a control…..at least for a while.

Act Differently

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Frustrated to Creative

I have a confession to make, my last blog took me far longer to finish than I had intended. This was because I knew exactly how I wanted the page laid out, but because of the html coding on my template I had problems inserting the images where I wanted them. I was determined not to be beaten and to achieve the layout I was after. After wasting a couple of hours researching on Google and then trying the same approach over and over again, I got fed up; gave up and finally stopped. However, by this time I was incredibly agitated and frustrated at not being able to achieve what I wanted. I know I’m not the only one guilty of this and not just in relation to computers, people find themselves stuck in cycles of behaviour regarding their approach to parenting, work, relationships etc. and as W.L Bateman said

“If you keep on doing what you’ve always done, you’ll keep on getting what you’ve always got.”

Once I’d stopped I decided to reassess what I was trying to achieve by asking myself three questions

  • What was my desired outcome? – To insert three images in my blog post
  • Why was I trying to achieve this, was it necessary /relevant? – yes, because the images supported the blog post
  • How else could I achieve it? – the images didn’t have to be beside the text, the message was what was important,  not the layout.

It was that light bulb moment. I realised that in the future instead of using my energy being agitated and frustrated (or any other range of emotions we may go through as we face challenges), I should reassess my situation and re-channel my energies into thinking creatively for a solution; a far more productive and enjoyable process.

I decided to create a collage to capture my learning (above) and as a result I created a phrase or ‘metaphor’ that I now use as a trigger to stop myself when I get caught in the cycle of repetitive, unproductive behaviour patterns. It reminds me to think and act differently; I call it the ‘Rubik cube syndrome!’

One of the images I used to symbolise the frustration I had been feeling was a Rubik cube. Being a teenager during the 80’s meant I had spent (wasted) many hours trying to solve the cube. I could only ever do two sides, after that I just ended up wasting time trying to achieve, what was and remains for me the unachievable, a completed cube. Not to dissimilar to the rhino in the last blog. The Rubik cube image works really well for me because when I think of it I have strong memories of feeling agitated and frustrated, of time wasted and something I cannot complete; experiences and feelings I do not wish to repeat.  I have used the trigger several times since creating the collage, especially as I’ve been building my website where I have had similar issues, and was pleased to see how well it works.

Since creating the collage I have been reading a book called ‘Expect the Unexpected (Or You Won’t Find It): A Creativity Tool [Roger Van Oech]. In it Van Oech suggests making metaphors for our current problem to help us stop and rethink what we are doing, particularly when faced with a problem. Though unintentionally, my collage been the tool for me to do this, and having read this I thought it may serve as a tool in the same way for others. Perhaps you need a trigger, something that will help you stop; rethink and reassess what you are doing when faced with a problem. If you find yourself caught in a cycle of repetitive behaviour patterns that do not achieve your desired outcomes, why not try creating your own collage to see what metaphors emerge. This link to my website includes free guidance on creating a collage that I hope you will find helpful. As always, if you would like to share your collage I would love to see it and hear if you have discovered your metaphor using this method so please email me on andrea@unglueyou.co.uk.