Curiosity Matters

An Exploration of Branding, Design and Cultural Trends

Creativity Versus Ideas

On Thursday and Friday, I spent most of my time dealing with a very random, unnecessary medical issue brought on by accidentally inhaling a tiny particle of a Clif bar. As a result, I missed collectively 7 hours of work, spent $200+ on co-pays and questioned whether or not everything does, in fact, happen for a reason. In the end, I can say that I legitimately gained a new appreciation for the very act of breathing and was reminded of how much I love being alive. Okay. So it wasn't a total loss. I'd like to say that it put my ongoing problems in perspective, but of course they quickly reared their ugly head. I'll just say that a career change, recent school and various moves back and forth across the country does not help ones bank account.

That night, armed with a glass of red wine, I managed to tackle my in progress novel with gusto. Somehow, the frustration of the last two days, coupled with the fermented juices, got my creative juices flowing. How does one channel those near manic bouts of creativity without experiencing recent pain? J.K. Rowling created a masterpiece of an imaginary universe while desperately trying to support her family. It is commonlyknown that countless legendary artists and writers were alcoholics, depressed and experienced great tragedies in their lives. I just finished watching an episode of Californiacation where the writer, Hank Moody, spends most of his time avoiding writing until he seems he has hit rock bottom and the only way he can rise from his situation is by writing.

In Steven Johnson's latest book, [amazon_link id="1594487715" target="_blank" container="" container_class="" ]"Where Good Ideas Come From[/amazon_link]," Steven notes that the Age of Enlightenment began when people stopped drinking alcohol during the day, and came together in cafes to drink tea and coffee. Great progress came from the exchange of ideas between people of various backgrounds. How does the development of "good ideas" differ from the creative works produced during the Renaissance? Whether we're creating art or solving problems, great work comes when we let ideas slide through our brains, unfiltered.

As strategists, perhaps we're not the Da Vinci's, Michelango's, or Rafael's of the world, but rather, the Newton's, Franklin's and Jefferson's of the world. So find a scientist, an artist, a writer, an engineer, and maybe an architect and grab a cup of coffee.