Monday Morning Memo for December 12, 2005
[I just hate it when Roy gives out our top-secret breakthrough methods. As silly as this may sound to some of you tightly-bound analyticals, this really works! -Dave]
By Roy H. Williams
People tell me they want to learn to think outside the box.
No problemo. The secret is to stay out of the box to begin with.
You crawl into the box when you think about your problem and wrap its known obstacles around you. So quit. Focus instead on an interesting saying, quote, or phrase unrelated to your problem. Crawl inside that bit of wisdom and look at your problem from this cozy new perspective. Don’t be surprised if your chosen phrase works like Ali Baba’s “Open Sesame,” and throws open the door to innovation, wealth, and recognition.
The secret to conjuring powerful strategy – also known as coming up with The Big Idea – is to free your beagle. Abandon the linear, sequential logic of your brain’s left hemisphere and engage the pattern recognition of the right.
Last week I wrote to you about commitment, persistence. I had a reason.
“Just as a dog guards a bone safely between its paws when not actively chewing it, creative people nurture an idea even when not actively thinking about it… Creativity does not result from mysterious visions that come in dreams, or from fortuitous circumstances. Creativity and persistence are synonymous. Constantly thinking about the problem, consciously and unconsciously, maximizes the possibility that a chance occurrence is likely to be useful in solving it.” – Dr. Richard Cytowic, neurologist
Pick a problem that’s had you handcuffed. Now let’s create a “chance occurrence” like the one mentioned by Cytowic. We’re going to…