Creative Resilience

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The Resilience Advantage promotes the notion that we want to be prepared for difficult events before they happen. That may mean that we are able to predict them ahead of time or that we are strengthen our overall resources so that when adversity strikes, we have the resources needed to take on the challenge. That kind of preparation requires us to think differently and creatively.

The girl in today’s photo is cleverly using the shadow of the giraffe as a template for her artistry. Creativity can be something that we engage in from time to time (“I think I’ll take a watercolor class”) or it can be an approach to how we want to live our lives.  Perhaps she has, at her youthful age discovered that attitude.

My wife, Sheila has an “In this kitchen, we dance” sign above our pantry and whether she is baking bread or slicing tomatoes from the garden, she always does it with a bit of panache. She was born a dancer, so it is easy for her be creative all of the time, while for me I must be mindful about my creative capacities and be more intentional about calling them into play, since I may stay in my head a bit more than is necessary.

Our creativity is our birthright and regardless of whether we think of ourselves as “creatives”, we all are. We solve problems, plan events, and learn and apply new facts in our lives daily. Many of us received messages as children that we are not singers or dancers or innovators (“don’t give up your day job”) and instead we want to recognize that our imagination is one of our greatest resources.

One of the best ways to strengthen creativity and resilience is through the asking of questions and what is interesting about questions is that as we get older, we ask fewer of them. Five-year-olds may ask 100 questions a day but adults may only ask 5 a day. Questioning is a powerful way to gain answers and insights that fuel our own creative thoughts, which, in turn, powers our resilience.

I’m hearing from lots of my clients that our world continues to be unpredictable, and they see the impact of that uncertainty in their employees. My suggestion is to start the conversation and don’t assume that anyone has the right answers but that there are probably many possible answers that you and your team will be able to choose from to help remedy the situation

Remember, it all begins with asking the first question.

© Richard Citrin 2021

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