The following is an excerpt from the book:
When I was twelve years old, I entered a drawing contest for the chance at winning a $25 cash award from a “prestigious” art school advertising in a children’s magazine. The challenge was to draw my favorite of three characters, between “Tippy” the turtle, “Tiny” the mouse, or a no-name pirate. I chose “Tiny” the mouse. I meticulously copied each line and shade in the little black-and-white sketch and mailed it in with my name, address, age, and telephone number. I eagerly awaited the response to my perfectly accurate rendition of their cute little rodent. Sadly, I never heard back from them. Several months later, they published one of the drawings that won a prize. It looked nothing like the image I copied. It was a talented young artist’s creative rendition of “Tiny” with all sorts of extra lines and squiggles that were not in the original masterpiece. That was the moment I realized I was not artistically gifted. I was a logical, methodical person, not an artistic, creative one. The thought that I was not a creative being became part of my self-identity.
Twenty-five years later, I started my own consulting service. I was developing systems and brainstorming ideas and building my business. I was thinking outside the box and stretching my imagination and filling my mind with possibilities, then making them real. I was solving problems and juggling deadlines and managing people. I was startled to realize I was being very creative! I embraced it as my new self-image. I didn’t change who I was, I just changed the way I thought about myself. It was an empowering attitude and it increased my confidence.
Creativity is the energy of life. It enables us to dream and then implement. To believe in something more than what we can hold in our hands today. It allows us to take disparate ideas and mesh them into something new and wonderful. It is inspiration and appreciation. The goal of creativity is freedom of personal expression, in any form. The medium we choose to express our ideas is irrelevant. To be creative is to remove the boundaries of what is accepted as known or plausible. You must try and fail and try again; imagine, stretch, and…