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White Space Creativity38:14 with Denise Jacobs
In visual arts, graphic and web design, white space is fundamental to allowing a creation to exist, by creating delineation and focus. Similarly, in our lives,creativity often sprouts from the "white space" of time: the moments in our increasingly busy schedules between activities and thoughts that allow the subconscious to better absorb and connect information. Clearly, in order to be more creative, we need to open up this "in-between" space in our lives, but once we've done so, how can we best capitalize upon the brain's natural creativecapacities? In this talk, we'll explore several counter-intuitive and potentially subversive methods for leveraging this "white space" to foment innovative thinking creative productivity.
How are you doing this morning? 0:00 >> Good! 0:05 >> Happy to be here? 0:06 Good, I'm happy to be here too. 0:08 Now not even sure how to get started other than to say, I'm Denise Jacobs. 0:10 I'm gonna be talking about white space creativity. 0:16 You know where you are. 0:19 I apologize for the kind of lack of contrast, I was thinking that it 0:21 was gonna be so much contrastier, that's a technical term, by the way. 0:25 And if you want to tweet my Twitter handle is @denisejacobs.com harsh tag 0:30 generateconf, and if you wanna use the hashtag for this, it's whitespacecreate. 0:35 Can you read that? 0:39 Like seriously, okay, good. 0:40 I was like, having like a fit this morning. 0:42 Like, they can't read it oh, my god, it's horrible. 0:43 And if you wanna get the slides, the slides are at bit.ly/generatewhitespace. 0:46 So, having said all that just to tell you a little bit about myself. 0:51 Some of you may know me, as kind of my former entity as 0:58 the author of The CSS Detective Guide, and a CSS Person and CSS3 and all that stuff. 1:04 And so you may be saying wait, what? 1:11 You're a creativity evangelist? 1:13 What does that even mean? 1:14 Not only actually am I Creativity Evangelist. 1:17 But I am now the Founder and 1:20 Chief Creativity Evangelist of my Creativity Consulting Firm called, 1:23 The Creative Dose, which I'm super excited about. 1:27 But I got into this because to me, 1:32 I feel like creativity is a really important skill to have. 1:34 It's something, as web designers and web developers we're always using, but 1:38 it's one of those skills that's almost like, 1:42 we don't exactly know how we tap into it, we don't exactly know how we get into it, 1:45 into the zone, but when it's, when we're there, it's amazing, right? 1:50 It's great. 1:54 But it's kind of elusivity of it that, that kind of intangibility of it, 1:55 where it's like, you wish you could replicate it over and over again. 2:01 And so, I wanna talk about some kind of unconventional ways that you can 2:04 actually use to get into a creative zone more easily. 2:08 And also, by the way, because I started my business, 2:12 I kind of feel like this all the time like, aah! 2:15 So you'll excuse me if I, if I'm overly exuberant today. 2:18 So, I wanna talk about the state of the create. 2:23 Kind of the canvas of what we're working with. 2:27 Now this actually involves participation from your part. 2:30 When you feel like you're in the creod, creative zone, what does it feel like? 2:34 Somebody give me something. 2:38 What does it feel like for you? 2:40 Don't make me call you out, because I will. 2:42 I'm American, I've got no shame. 2:43 [LAUGH]. 2:44 >> [INAUDIBLE] >> Everything flows. 2:47 What else? 2:51 >> I'll call on you. 2:54 You in the blue shirt, blue jacket. 2:55 She's like, me? 2:57 Yeah. 2:58 You, yes you. 2:59 Cuz you, you stepped up. 3:00 Don't fight over it. 3:02 >> [INAUDIBLE] >> Yeah. 3:03 >> [INAUDIBLE] >> Scared? 3:07 Really? What are you scared? 3:10 What are you afraid of? 3:12 >> [INAUDIBLE]. 3:13 >> Right, but when you're in it, not when you're trying to start, 3:18 when you're like, try reaching for it, but when you actually grabbed it, 3:20 and you're like, you're in the zone, what does it feel like? 3:23 Feel confident. 3:28 Great. Everything flows, you feel confident. 3:29 One more over here. 3:31 Don't make me, Jeremy, I'm gonna call you because you, I know you'll talk. 3:32 >> [INAUDIBLE]. 3:34 >> Yes. 3:36 Timeless, right? 3:37 You lose time. 3:38 You're just in the flow and you look down, and 3:39 then you look up and five hours have passed, and you forgot to eat, and 3:42 you forgot to use the bathroom,and you didn't care about who called you, right? 3:45 You were just in it. 3:49 So I like to think of this 3:50 as a form of magic in some ways, like a form of alchemy. 3:53 That when we're in the creative zone, it's like we're alchemists ourselves. 3:58 That we're taking this unformed, untangible thing. 4:03 We're taking it and 4:07 we're moving it through ourselves, like a semi-permeable membrane. 4:08 And then it comes out into the world as this tangible, fully formed something. 4:11 Concept, app, website, writing, whatever it is, right? 4:16 It feels like magic, but it's actually, it's not magic, it's just magical. 4:23 By the way if you've never read watched this TED talk your brain on creativity, 4:28 I mean, your brain on improvisation, it's amazing, you should totally watch it. 4:34 So, what happens is, 4:38 kind of like she says, what happens is a lot of times we get blocked. 4:41 Right. 4:45 We're trying to get into that creative flow, or we're trying to reach it, and 4:46 instead you're just there like grasping for straws not catching it. 4:49 And we have this amazing tool, we have our brains, as this amazing creative tool. 4:54 And we also have the tools of kind of time, and attention, and focus. 4:59 But what happens, 5:05 is that we often don't really know how to properly use these tools. 5:06 And therefore, that's what happens which makes us run into these roadblocks. 5:11 And so, then when we run into roadblocks, we can't really 5:16 access all of the great ideas that we have in our head as well, as we would like to. 5:21 And so, I wanna talk about creativity and 5:26 power, because I actually think that, in some ways, there is a pyro-dynamic. 5:30 Now, we're all creative people here and, I'm not even gonna 5:35 do a show of hands of people who think they are, and think who think they aren't. 5:40 You can kinda keep that, and you can kinda think about that on your own. 5:43 But we're all actually really powerful in terms of creative, being creative, and 5:46 being in terms of creativity. 5:51 We all have our own kind of intrinsic, unique ways of being creative. 5:52 But instead of actually using this power fully, 5:58 I feel like a lot of times we contain it. 6:02 We try to downplay what we're good at. 6:06 You know, somebody will say, oh, you know, are you good at so-and-so? 6:08 Well, yeah, I'm okay. 6:11 You know, I, I dabble in a little bit of web design, web development. 6:13 Yeah, I'm all right, you know. 6:17 But we try to contain this power or even worse, we give it away, right? 6:19 We like totally will ignore what our creative gifts are, 6:25 and that's most unfortunate. 6:30 And so the question is, how can we make it better? 6:32 We give our power away by doubting ourselves, how can we make this better? 6:37 Now, the other thing is, is that we've got these complications Kind of distractions. 6:42 These distraction complications going on, and one of the things is, 6:46 is that when you're really creative and you're in the creative zone 6:51 actually you're not really focused outside of yourself are you? 6:54 You're really focused in on yourself and you're really focused on whatever it is, 6:57 the idea is and bringing that to, to the fore. 7:01 But what ends up happening instead, is that a lot of our lives and 7:05 a lot of the ways society's structured, is that our attention is focused outward. 7:10 Right? 7:15 A lot of times, and I know it's ironic that I'm here at a web conference and 7:15 people maybe tweeting, you guys actually are all listening very well. 7:21 It doesn't look like anybody is looking at their phones. 7:24 But a lot of times, we're like addicted to hyporconnectivity, right. 7:27 On our phones all the time, tweeting, texting, looking for 7:31 emails, etcetera, etcetera. 7:35 We're not actually being present to what's happening in front of us. 7:37 And there's actually, when I say we're addicted, I actually mean we're addicted. 7:41 Have you guy's seen the study or heard about the study, 7:45 where they take the rats, they put him in a cage and they give him a lever? 7:48 Yeah, no, ring a bell? 7:52 They give him a lever. 7:54 The rat hits the lever they get food. 7:55 Every time they hit the lever they get food, and then they switch it up, and then 7:56 it happens intermittently, sometimes they get food, sometimes they don't get food. 8:00 What they found out, is that the rats get a little squirt of 8:04 dopamine in their brains, every time the food comes, every time the reward comes. 8:08 And then when it doesn't come, they want that squirt of dopamine so 8:13 they keep hitting the lever. 8:16 So if you've ever been to a casino, you see humans doing a similar situation. 8:17 And I don't know about you guys, but I'm a little addicted to email. 8:22 And there have been times when I've sat, and 8:26 hit the refresh button on Gmail to see if something's coming in. 8:28 Like is it, is it no? 8:32 Now? How about now? 8:33 How about now? 8:34 Because I'm addicted to that little squirt of dopamine. 8:36 That little jolt that I get, that when I get an email, like oh. 8:40 And of course, I never want to deal with it, but I still want to see it. 8:42 Jonathan Fields, 8:46 who wrote a book called Uncertainty, talks about hyperconnectivity. 8:47 And he says, that it gives us the perception of getting more done. 8:51 And, and it makes us feel like we're getting, 8:54 that we're doing more because we're using every free moment of every waking hour. 8:56 But, the question is, is that the most effective things? 9:01 These distractions actually start to affect the way our brains work. 9:04 There's something called the Zeigarnik effect. 9:09 And that basically, comes down to our brains are actually kind of 9:12 formed to start to look up, work on a task and start to do it. 9:17 And then what happens is, if you truncate that task, if you interrupt it, 9:22 then that cycle, mentally is still happening in the background. 9:26 Can imagine it like a computer processor? 9:30 You stop a process, it keeps running and it kind of keeps hanging and 9:32 you start another process. 9:35 That goes, you stop that one, and that one keeps hanging. 9:37 And then at the end of the day, you wonder why you feel overwhelmed. 9:40 You feel tired. 9:45 You didn't get anything done. 9:46 I would argue also that in some ways, we have this hypoconnectivity and 9:49 we get into all of our distractions, 9:54 because we're actually afraid of this creative power that we have, right? 9:56 And, that's why we're kind of all over the place. 10:02 Now, I think that we can channel this power. 10:06 And what if, the way to channel this power isn't about thinking, 10:10 and it isn't about doing so much it's more about something else. 10:17 So, I offer to you that genius and 10:26 creative genius is the offspring of the in-between. 10:29 And so, let's talk about how we're going to get that. 10:34 So, Clarity. 10:38 How are we gonna get some of this clarity? 10:41 How are we gonna leverage this in-between space, get away from 10:43 being hyper-connected, and being, getting away from being distracted all the time so 10:46 that we can really start to harness this creative power? 10:51 Now, what we're trying to do here is 10:54 actually maximize what our brains do naturally to be creative. 10:57 Now, one of the things I think is really interesting about creativity. 11:03 When people think about it, they think about it as this, 11:06 kind of fluffy kind of nebulous, tenuous process. 11:09 But, the fact of the matter is, is that we've got these brains, and 11:14 our brains are doing something kind of all the time. 11:17 And there is actually some certain neurological processes that go 11:20 on when we're being creative. 11:23 And so, a lot of times when people talk about creativity in brains, 11:25 they always talk about right brain, right? 11:30 Right brain versus left brain. 11:32 That the left brain is linear and logical and sequential and analytical, et cetera. 11:34 And that the right brain is instead kind of holistic and 11:39 random and intuitive and non-verbal, et cetera. 11:42 But the fact of the matter is, 11:47 is that when your work is working well creatively, it's when it's integrated. 11:48 It's when those, the right side of your brain and 11:53 the left side of your brain are actually working together in concert. 11:56 It's about your neurons firing well. 12:03 But the thing is, is that when you're distracted and when you're hyper connected 12:06 and you're all over the place, frankly is your brain working well at that point? 12:11 They're like, she's like no. 12:17 It's not. A couple people be like, wait, it's not. 12:19 It's not. 12:22 It's actually, stress and 12:23 things like that actually cause your brain to fire like improperly and not very well. 12:24 The other thing that we can take into consideration is brainwaves, and 12:30 you can't even see any of the text there. 12:34 Thank, thank, for heaven's sakes. 12:37 But so, there are different kinds, you guys familiar with with brainwaves? 12:40 How many of you are familiar with brainwaves? 12:45 Show of hands. Yes? 12:47 No? Okay, for those of you who aren't, 12:48 five different kinds of brainwaves. 12:51 I'm gonna skip Gamma. 12:53 I'm gonna go straight to Beta. 12:54 So, Beta is kind of normal every day focus. 12:55 Everyday kind of concentration, when you're being analytical. 12:59 When you're logical. 13:02 When you're processing something. 13:03 When you're externally focused, you're usually in beta brainwave mode. 13:04 Alpha brainwave mode, 13:09 is that wonderful place when you're starting to feel relaxed. 13:11 When you're starting to like fall asleep, for example. 13:15 Or, when you're waking up. 13:17 When you take a walk, when you t-take a nap, when you take a shower. 13:19 When you're meditating for example, anybody meditate here? 13:24 A few people, yeah? 13:26 Okay, I'm with you. 13:29 Meditators unite. 13:30 So, often you will get into alpha brainwave mode when you're meditating. 13:31 Theta is the lower brain wave underneath that. 13:37 Usually when you go into a deep sleep, usually dream sleep. 13:40 If you're a very experienced meditator, 13:45 you can into theta brain wave mode but at will. 13:47 And then delta is lowest and the slowest. 13:51 And that's usually when you like, 13:54 if you've ever had one of those nights where you slept so well, that you like, 13:55 you felt completely rejuvenated and refreshed afterwards when you woke up? 13:58 Or you felt like, I slept the sleep of the dead. 14:03 Right? 14:06 Like, that deep, deep level, that's actually where your brain actually starts, 14:07 your body starts to rejuvenate itself. 14:12 You go into a super-conscious state, where you kinda feel like you're connected with 14:16 everything, if you're kind of somewhat conscious during that period of time. 14:19 And then finally, at the top, gamma brain waves, are usually really, really, fast. 14:23 Also what happens a lot of times when you're in crisis. 14:30 When people say they had like a, a kind of a traumatic experience, and 14:34 they remember everything that happened at the time, 14:39 even though it might have been within the period of seconds. 14:41 And it also proceeds an aha moment. 14:45 So, a lot of times, your brain will go into this like really fast moment when all 14:47 your neurons start firing and connect together to make a new idea. 14:51 And then we'll usually go down into Alpha brainwaves mode. 14:55 Now, Alpha, is my kinda personal favorite, 14:58 because it is the easiest one to get into from being focused and concentrated. 15:02 And, it is often referred to as the gateway to creativity. 15:06 It is where creative ideas usually come from. 15:10 How many of you guys have had a really good idea in the shower? 15:15 Admit it, you know, it's like don't feel bad, 15:19 because like almost everybody universally will say that. 15:21 And that's probably because you were in alpha brainwave state, 15:24 you were relaxed, your brain kind of relaxed and it got [SOUND], and 15:28 all of the information that was in your left brain was able to be accessed by 15:31 your right brain and put together in a new way. 15:35 So, you guys wanna try it for a moment? 15:37 You willing to indulge me? 15:43 Okay. 15:44 I can see all of you, by the way, so if you don't close your eyes, I will see you. 15:45 Close your eyes for a few minutes. 15:49 [BLANK_AUDIO] 15:51 I can see all of you. 15:53 He's like, he's looking around like she caught me. 15:55 So close your eyes, and I want you to just breathe. 15:57 Just breathe through your nose. 16:01 If you can, and you don't have to force this, just rest your tongue at the roof of 16:03 your mouth, and just breathe, and just let your shoulders fall away from your ears. 16:09 We're here at the beginning of the conference. 16:16 It's real mellow. 16:18 I just keep breathing. 16:20 Just keep breathing. 16:21 Let your thoughts settle. 16:24 Just keep breathing. 16:27 Breathe a little more. 16:31 Great. 16:35 Okay, come on back to the room. 16:37 Some people are always like aw, was so nice. 16:39 If you felt your brain start to settle from being a little kind of frenzied, but 16:43 start to settle down, she's like, yeah, I did. 16:48 You started to experience your brain moving from alpha brainwave mode, 16:51 I'm sorry, from beta brainwave mode into alpha brainwave mode. 16:55 Now, the thing that is really interesting about this is that I love this 16:58 Tina Seelig wrote a book called InGenious, and she says that the part of the brain, 17:03 this is what happens when you're creative. 17:08 The parts of your brain that are responsible for 17:10 self-monitoring, start to turn off when you're creative. 17:12 And that's part of the trick. 17:16 So let's talk about some ways that you can actually leverage that process, 17:17 to get into Alpha brainwave mode really easily. 17:22 So you can do it, just like we did this just a minute ago. 17:24 By refocusing through your breath. 17:28 Just settling down and taking a few deep breaths, maybe closing your eyes. 17:30 Maybe doing that thing, that tongue on the roof of your mouth thing. 17:34 Which in fact, actually helps the bioelectric circuit of your body, 17:37 run through your body better which is why you do that. 17:42 Meditators and yoga people will know that. 17:45 You can also just lay down. 17:47 Laying down actually forces your body automatically to 17:50 start going into Alpha brainwave mode, super easy. 17:54 Another easy one, spacing out. 17:58 Now you think, wait a minute, I'm supposed to trying to be, 18:00 I'm supposed to be trying to be creative. 18:02 Well here's the thing. 18:05 You don't have to try to be creative. 18:06 You just have to relax yourself into a state, so that you can actually allow 18:08 yourself to be creative, because that's what you normally would do anyway. 18:12 So spacing out is great. 18:15 If you just kind of let your brain go out the window a lot of times, 18:17 anybody get really great ideas when you do that? 18:20 When you just all of a sudden look and 18:22 you're like oh, that's exactly how I'm supposed to do so and so, right? 18:23 It works. 18:28 Daydreaming, same sort of thing. 18:29 For all of you in domestic relationships your partners will appreciate this. 18:32 Mindless activity [LAUGH] like organizing things, washing the dishes. 18:37 Cleaning, sweeping, things like that, things that are just kind of 18:42 repetitive mindless activity, will help you get into Alpha brainwave mode easily. 18:46 Showers, our favorite thing. 18:51 I actually talked to a guy once at a conference and afterwards, 18:52 he came up after I did my talk, and he's like, I always get ideas in the shower. 18:56 Sometimes I'll take showers like five times a day, my wife thinks I'm crazy, but 19:01 it works for me, and I was like hey, you know what, if it works for you, do it. 19:05 Showers are great. 19:09 Also cross channel movement, so a lot of times people you hear about artists and 19:10 other kind of creative types who say that they take walks. 19:16 They take regular walks, to get ideas. 19:19 Well one of the reasons this work is because of something called 19:22 cross channel movement. 19:25 When your body does this kind of movement, 19:26 where one side of it is doing the oppothite, 19:29 sopposite thing from the other side, it actually makes your brain sync. 19:31 The brain hemispheres sync with each other, 19:35 and they communicate with each other better. 19:37 Which is why you get ideas when you walk. 19:39 So, cross-channel movement is great. 19:42 Laughter is really wonderful, and playing and having fun is really wonderful too for 19:45 that kind of sparking the right side of your brain and sparking creativity. 19:52 Actually there is a guy who's called The Laughter Guru. 19:56 HIs name is Madan Kataria, and he, I love this quote, 20:00 that when you're being playful, you're activating the right side of your brain, 20:04 the right side is unlimited and you can do anything you want. 20:08 And so, a lot of times sometimes when I need to get ideas for 20:12 things, I'll make myself watch comedy. 20:16 I don't watch comedy shorts, and I will just watch one after another, so 20:19 I just start laughing, and 20:22 I have actually had ideas come to me after I got done having a laughing fit. 20:23 So, this stuff actually really works. 20:28 So instead of having this kind of, 20:30 you know, tortured like I am trying to like, you know, be creative and 20:33 you feel like, you know, you're doing the core the, the, the equivalent of trying to 20:37 run an obstacle course just to come up with your idea. 20:42 Try relaxing. 20:45 Try intending alpha and try to do that. 20:46 Because when your brain is supposedly doing nothing, 20:51 it's really doing a tremendous amount. 20:53 So, really work to intend alpha. 20:55 That's one way of doing it. 20:58 The other way, is a little more whimsical. 21:01 And we can talk about aid that we can get from the unseen. 21:06 So, there's a great book called, So You're A Creative Genius, Now What? 21:11 And, the writer says, 21:17 sometimes dabbling in mysticism can be a fun way to understand and solve a problem. 21:19 So, let's dabble in a little mysticism, right now. 21:24 So, I'm gonna tell you a little story of something that happened a long time ago, 21:28 when I was in my early 20s. 21:33 So I used to live in a house that got turned into apartments. 21:36 And down in the basement apartment lived this woman, who was a single mom and 21:41 she had a little girl whose name was Natalie. 21:44 Now Natalie was four years old, and 21:46 she was cute as a button, and somehow I met her and then she took shine to me. 21:48 And so she would come, and she would knock on the door [SOUND], and 21:53 I'd open the door, and she'd say, do you wanna play? 21:57 Why, no, so cute. 22:01 So what was I gonna say, no? 22:03 Of course, I wanna play. 22:04 Which actually translated into more like babysitting, but I was okay with that. 22:06 So, she'd come upstairs, I'd get paper and pens and crayons and 22:10 stuff, and I laid it all out, we'd draw together. 22:15 And so she drew a picture for me one day, and she gave it to me and 22:18 she was so proud. 22:22 And she said, here Denise. 22:23 Here's a picture. 22:24 And I looked at it. 22:25 And I looked at her. 22:28 I looked at it and I said, Natalie, what is it? 22:30 And she said, it's a chicken cave. 22:34 I was like it's a, so like it's like a, like a cave for chickens. 22:38 She says no, no it's a chicken cave. 22:44 I was like, so it's a cave that's shaped like a chicken? 22:46 No, it's a chicken cave. 22:52 We went back and forth a couple more times. 22:55 I still to this day, don't know what a chicken cave is, but I love 22:58 the fact that she knew what it was, and that she had drawn a picture of it, and 23:03 she felt that it was fit to give to me, and that it was a perfectly valid concept. 23:08 When's the last time you came up with an idea that was a chicken cave? 23:14 Exactly, you don't know, you never know, it could be the next best thing. 23:18 So, I say that we can take a page from children, and 23:22 maybe use our imaginary friends, and we have there are some 23:27 imaginary friends that we can utilize to help kinda kickstart our creativity. 23:32 The first one is to travel our own internal lands. 23:36 So, like I was saying with the walking, 23:40 you can actually also leverage this kind of concept that I got from a woman I, 23:43 I understand is an is a writer, and she actually is based here in London. 23:49 And what she did to get her ideas in the morning, is she would take walks and 23:54 she would walk through the streets of London, and 23:58 she would listen to the songs that were playing inside of her head. 24:00 And she took those songs to be an indicator from her subconscious, 24:05 about the things that she would needed to think about, or the things, 24:09 the ideas, that they were, that her subconscious was trying to give her. 24:13 And I was like, that's so cool! 24:16 How many times do you have some random song running through your head? 24:19 Like a lot. 24:23 Like he's like, yeah, I do, I do, all the time. 24:24 Like all of a sudden something will come up and 24:26 I'm like, and then it'll just stay with me. 24:28 And sometimes, a lot of the times I ignore it. 24:30 But every now and then, I'll pay attention and I'll listen to it. 24:33 And sometimes, my interpretation of what the lyrics are or 24:35 what it means to me, actually is very relevant to what's happening in my life or 24:38 some problem that I'm trying to solve. 24:42 So you can travel your, in your internal lands. 24:44 Also you know you can take that, like I said as an indicator of your subconscious. 24:48 Also you can employ a genius. 24:55 Now a lot of times, people think of genius and they think of like Einstein, right? 24:59 But this kind of genius is more of the genius that, 25:04 that ancient Greeks used to use, and the Greeks thought of 25:08 a genius as an attended spirit that lived in the walls of the house of an artist. 25:12 And when an artist was making their, doing their work, 25:18 the genius would kind of come out of the walls, and like whisper to the artist, and 25:21 give it ideas, and tell it how to shape and form their work. 25:26 So, we kind of like to think of your genius kind of like Dobby 25:30 the House Elf, right? 25:33 And that you can have this kind of genius instead of trying to be a genius, 25:35 that you actually have a genius, right? 25:39 And so that your ideas aren't coming, your not trying to come up 25:43 with this amazing idea on your own, which is like a lot of pressure, right? 25:46 Like it's gotta be amazing. 25:49 But if you kind of have this thing where it's like, I'm just listening to this, 25:51 this, this other kind of thing that's telling me what the idea is. 25:55 Then there's not as much pressure. 25:58 And then whatever it says, you're just like, I'm just a scribe. 26:00 I'm just, you know, 26:03 I'm just like the sherpa, I'm just doing what they tell me to do. 26:04 And I think that makes, kind of gives, takes the pressure away from you. 26:08 Another entity that we could use, fanciful entity that we could use, is a Daemon. 26:12 And a Daemon was, they thought of I think it was the ancient Greece again, 26:19 thought of a Daemon as a divine something. 26:23 And the way I like to think of a Daemon, is kinda like a creativity babel fish, 26:26 so that it's like the little spokespiece for the gods. 26:32 And that, it is there kind of in your ear to whisper to you, 26:36 to interpret what the gods say. 26:40 And interpret it to you, and tell you in a way that you can understand it. 26:43 So, I kind of like to think of having a Daemon as well. 26:47 And then finally, you can also call upon the muses. 26:51 Now, when it was all said and done, there were nine muses, but 26:56 nine is like way too many people to try to listen to. 27:00 I say, you should just try to work with the original three muses. 27:03 And the original three muses were, Mneme which was memory. 27:08 Melete which was practice or occasion, or Aoide which was voice. 27:12 Now, muses were thought to be the true speakers for 27:17 whom the artist was just a mouthpiece, and 27:21 that they were thought to inspire artists and inspire people to do their best. 27:23 So, having a muse is not a bad thing. 27:28 So when I think of the muse of memory, I like to think of, 27:30 when you think back on all the times where you had an idea that was really good or 27:35 that really inspired you, or you think back on all of the things that have 27:40 inspired you, that maybe were outside of yourself that other people have done. 27:44 And you can take that, and use that to inform the new thing that you're 27:48 working on, have that inform your work. 27:52 A lot of times, who keeps like a swiped file? 27:54 Or like a, like a file of things, like a kind of 27:57 repository of things that inspire them, so that you can go back and look at later. 28:00 Anybody else? 28:04 Yeah. 28:05 So, doing something like that, also helps this kind of memory muse, right. 28:06 That you have these regular things you can look and be like, oh, yeah, 28:10 that was a really great idea. 28:14 Maybe I can take that, and spring board off of that and do something else. 28:15 Melete or Practice or Occasion. 28:20 So, one thing that's really important about creativity, and 28:22 like basically using it and building it like a muscle, is practice, 28:26 is being able to actually have a habit in place, where you're coming back and 28:30 you're working on your creativity all the time. 28:36 And it doesn't have to be like you were sitting there, and you're doing something 28:38 for two hours or your like, painting a painting every weekend or something. 28:41 It could be something that your doing in small increments. 28:45 It could be 10 minutes of just capturing ideas or making sure you take one 28:49 photograph a day, or making sure you write one page of something in the morning. 28:53 It doesn't have to be a lot, but it does have to be regular, and 28:57 having that practice or occasion, makes it so 29:01 it becomes second nature, it becomes habit, it becomes reflex, right? 29:04 Another thing, voice. 29:11 So, one of the things I like to think about with voice, 29:13 is that each of us have our own unique voice. 29:17 Each of us has our own unique fingerprint, our own unique DNA. 29:21 So whatever it is that you put into something creatively, and 29:25 you can take something that's already been done by somebody, and 29:29 just do it slightly in your own way and it will be different, right? 29:33 You can't actually end up replicating anything that anybody's done. 29:38 You can copy it, but you, you can't actually replicate it. 29:42 So, trying to do something in your own unique voice, can be a muse for 29:45 you as well. 29:50 Also, now that we've got the, the, the, the daemon and 29:52 the, the genius and the muses outta the way, 29:57 we can also think about calling upon the spirit of the idea itself. 30:00 One thing that I think is very interesting, I like to think of 30:06 ideas as their own entities, and that the ideas want to take form. 30:10 And a lot of times, actually Elizabeth Gilbert has a great quote that says, 30:15 the world is being circled by ideas and creativity that wants to take form, and 30:20 be made manifest in the world. 30:25 And it's looking, for portals to come through. 30:27 So, there are ideas running around all the time, and 30:30 a lot of them are flirting with you. 30:34 Seeing if you are, if you're, like, a good match for them. 30:36 Right? They're, like, how about you? 30:39 And they're, like, how about you? 30:41 How about you? 30:42 How about you? Have you ever had a really amazing idea 30:43 for something, and you were about to launch it, or you were gonna launch it and 30:47 then you found out that somebody else did pretty much the same thing, like, 30:50 right before you did? 30:54 Has anybody had that? 30:55 I've totally had that, right? 30:56 My theory was, was that the idea was looking for a portal to come through, and 30:59 it chose me plus a few other people, and the other people acted on it before I did. 31:03 So that's another thing too, is to be, to give your ideas respect. 31:07 One of the things I like to think of is that, we're avatars for ideas. 31:12 That ideas use us, and not vice versa. 31:16 It's not us coming up with the idea, 31:20 the idea has chosen you to be the channel through which it comes through. 31:22 And then what you do is, you are in service to that idea instead of trying to 31:27 mold it and shape it into something that you want it to become, 31:32 you just listen to what the idea wants to become and you do that. 31:34 And when I say listen, I mean really listen. 31:38 And then, not only can you just listen to it, 31:40 you can actually engage in a conversation with the idea. 31:44 Now, I know this sounds kinda crazy but it's true, 31:47 that there have been times when, when I was kind of trying to develop ideas for 31:50 something, I would actually do this process. 31:55 I would take a walk in the, in the morning, excuse me. 31:58 And I would talk to the idea, and I would say okay, what do you want me to do? 32:02 And then they'd be like, and it, all the ideas that I can came up with, 32:07 after I said what do you want me to do, I was like okay, I'll take that. 32:10 I'll use that. 32:13 I'll do that. 32:14 I'll do that. 32:14 What else? 32:15 And then I would get some more ideas. 32:15 And I'd be like, okay, I'll use that. 32:17 And use that, and use that, and I never questioned it, and it worked out great. 32:18 I actually developed a lot of presentations that I do that way. 32:22 So, trust that the idea is, knows exactly what it wants to be, 32:25 and that it also trusts that it knows that you are the right person for that idea. 32:32 And don't question it, because trust is everything. 32:38 And so, that leaves us with the final thing. 32:41 Now, you get to choose. 32:47 You could be distracted, and do all of this stuff. 32:49 You know, and be hyper connected and everything. 32:54 And not really take the time to settle down, and find your ideas and 32:57 get into your creative zone. 33:00 The choice is yours, of how you want to use your brain power, right? 33:02 Cuz you have this creative brain power but you may not have been in the f, 33:08 the, the mode of really, like tapping into it and, 33:12 and, and really leveraging it as, as fully as you could. 33:16 Creative flow, like I was saying, really lies in that in-between state, really lies 33:21 in that place of settling down, getting into Alpha brainwave mode and whatnot. 33:26 And so, I think that it's really time for us to kind of know who we really are. 33:31 To know that we're creative. 33:38 That our ideas matter, or the ideas that have chosen us matter. 33:39 And, that it's time for us to really reclaim our power. 33:44 And, that we can have this, instead of having this kind of great, truer, 33:48 wiser, higher, 33:53 more powerful, potentially disruptive form of creativity happening in the future. 33:55 We can start to make that happen right now. 34:00 I get inspired by this quote, and I feel like this is actually what 34:03 makes me kind of move forward, and want to do the work that I do that. 34:07 Creativity makes day to day experiences more vivid, 34:12 enjoyable, more rewarding and when we live creatively, 34:16 boredom is banished and every moment holds the promise of a new discovery. 34:19 Super important, so I say, that if you feel a little out of 34:25 touch with your creativity, know that it is waiting for you, that it misses you. 34:29 And that you can leverage white space, and 34:35 leverage that in-between to really reach it and really generate it and honess it, 34:36 harness it, focus it, and do something really amazing. 34:42 So, thank you. 34:44 [APPLAUSE] 34:48 [APPLAUSE] Okay. 34:52 Three more things to say, and I have a little bit of time which is great. 34:56 So, the first one is, some people have said, and I actually did a talk, 34:59 that was talking about this a couple of years ago, and one of the tweets was, 35:03 was that, the one buddy said, it sounds like a lot of pseudo science to me. 35:07 Trust me, I assure you, I love information and 35:11 I love research, and I wouldn't tell you something that didn't have a basis. 35:14 Now you can't even see this, but there are, 35:18 if you go to delicious.com/denisejacobs, and 35:20 put in creativity, you'll find just about every article of which there actually at 35:24 this point hundreds that I use to to support my research. 35:28 Number one. Number two, 35:33 I've written several articles on creativity Banishing Your Inner Critic and 35:35 Reigniting Your Creative Spark for A List Apart and one for sorry, old screen shot. 35:38 One for Now Creative Block about enhancing creativity and newest one 35:45 is on Perfectionism and Procrastination and how to break that loop. 35:49 And finally I wanted to tell you guys that, I don't know if you noticed, 35:52 but this piece of artwork has been hugely, hugely inspiring for me. 35:59 And has really, kind of, sparked me and 36:07 kind of taken me forward, in my creative journey. 36:10 And the artist is Americo Morales, and 36:14 he is the brother of Nivi Morales, and I wanted to show you guys. 36:19 I actually had Nivi bring the original piece of artwork, so you can see it. 36:25 I'm actually, I'm so 36:30 honored they're actually letting me buy this piece of artwork. 36:32 And I want to show you guys like the stuff that he does. 36:35 I'm incredibly inspired by Americo as you can see he has Down Syndrome, 36:39 and he is this amazing artist who's got this amazing sense of color and, 36:46 and form and everything, and every time I think about him, and 36:52 think about him doing his art work. 36:56 I feel so inspired, because he's not holding himself back or judging himself. 36:59 He is just creating. 37:04 And that's what I aspire to do as well. 37:05 So I wanna show you guys this really cool piece of artwork really quick. 37:08 And then, and then outcome. 37:14 So this is Nivi her, his sister who I got introduced. 37:16 [SOUND] So, so beautiful, and so cool, 37:20 and I get to take this home with me. 37:26 So, yay. 37:32 So, if you guys wanna know more about Americo, please come and 37:33 ask Nivi about it. 37:36 And, and I got a certificate for authenticity too. 37:38 So, super excited, thank you Nivi. 37:43 Thank you. 37:46 [SOUND] Yay. 37:46 And also, Nivi just updated his website, so 37:52 you can go to Americamorales.net and look it up. 37:55 So, if you want to connect with me, I'm @denisejacobs.com. 37:58 And if you want to check out my my new endeavour it's The Creative Dose. 38:03 Thank you very much. 38:10 [APPLAUSE] 38:11
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