Creativity Street

I was thinking the other day. …Has today’s challenging and volatile real estate market taken the wind out of your sails? Do you know of someone involved with a “Problem Property”? Are you not making any money and starting to tap into your reserves? Are you starting to wonder why your bank might be calling every other day to check up on you and how you are feeling? Remember the loan you took out a couple of years ago with a “Lender’s Insecurity” provision that says that any time the lender feels insecure it may call the loan due?

Did you miss the “Junker Trade Tax Incentive” so you’re stuck with that damn Range Rover that is always in the shop? Is your tank on empty, and do you feel like you are running behind all the time and the bad guys are catching up? Are you tired of hearing the whispers around you? Is your wife so unhappy that there is not going to be an Aspen ski vacation this year that she is gone every weekend playing golf? Do you sit staring at the walls wondering if you qualify for an Obama Bailout Bucket Full of Money?

Are you just plain, old stuck…going nowhere with nothing to do when you arrive? When was the last time you had a new idea? Did you do anything about it or just say, “nah … that will never work” so you didn’t even try?

We’ve all been to the world you find yourself visiting — some more often than others. It’s not easy breaking out of that funk. In fact, it’s mighty hard. There is a way. It is a simple one-way street that you can travel alone or you can invite someone to join you. There is already a bunch of folks traveling this path; any one of them will welcome you to walk along their street.

So, what’s the name of this traveling street and how do you find it? Well, let’s try a test.

There are a series of key elements required to start cruising down this street.

First, you have to be alive — awake — and have a wide open mindset so you are aware of everything that happens to you and around you. Your senses have to be on alert…all five senses plus your sixth sense — intuition — have to be engaged. Cruise control is not permitted on this street. Be aware of what goes on around you and dig down below the surface of the problem. Care. Be inquisitive. Get involved in the solution.

Now, here is the test. The question is “what’s the name of this street I just wrote about?” If you were living in the place where all those things I just described are found, you would have seen the title of this article, “Creativity Street” and connected with this theme.

See how it helps to be alive every day? Now, don’t laugh. Remember, I live in the Town of Carefree where the streets have names like Stage Coach Pass, Easy Street, and Nonchalant, Up and Down, Long Rifle Roam, Wampum Circle, Sidewinder Street and Lazy Lane, the street I live on.

Creativity Street is a place we can travel every day. There are a few other key elements that some into play. As Thomas Edison said, “Genius is 2% inspiration and 98% perspiration.” This means that we have to turn our thoughts into action. Do something with the ideas you have. Mentally focus your thoughts on the subject at hand. You need to “feel” that not only can you solve the problem, but that you already have solved the problem. Or as the ’69 Mets said “Ya Gotta Believe” first in yourself and then in the ability of others.

The next element is to carefully share your creative ideas with others. Remember, if I have an idea and you have an idea, we both have one each. If we exchange ideas, we both have two ideas. Two is always better than one. If we each then exchange our two ideas with someone for their two ideas then four people now have four ideas each. Four ideas are better than two … and ideation is underway. That is a good thing. Remember, there is no such thing as a bad idea. There are only ideas that worked and ideas that did not work once explored. The key to success lies in trying out our ideas. If the idea doesn’t work, find another idea and try again. Always hope for the best for everyone and the best will happen to you.

This next part of walking down Creativity Street is fundamental. I am amazed how often many of us are afraid to implement when not implementing causes even more problems.

So, imagine you are a little kid again and….

Ask questions. Lots of questions. Don’t accept the obvious answer as the desired answer. Ask the same question a different way to seek clarity. There is no such thing as a silly question … some are just more insightful than others. Be inquisitive and curious. Ask questions … ask, ask, ask, and ask.

Then there is my favorite key element. Digging deeper. How many times have you heard someone say they had to dig themselves out of a hole? What a waste of energy. The only thing that happens when you are at the bottom of a hole and you start digging is that they hole gets deeper. Period. Nothing else is physically possible. You dig inside a hole, the hole gets deeper.

Now, to get out of that hole, what do you have to do? You have to climb out, right? But you gotta want it bad otherwise digging deeper is easier. You get to keep your head down while the world passes you by. Been there, done that. You must want to improve yourself. If you bring along a desire to help others as well as yourself, your mind will open and you’ll get out of the hole much sooner than later

This next key is hard to work into your life when life has beaten you up … Really hard. But if you have the other elements cooking you will wake up and remember what it felt like last time, which is a good first step. Because that trigger will go off and then it’ll happen again … and again and before you know it, you’ll have your Mojo cookin’ for sure

What is Mojo? Well, that’s another story. Just remember this we have to be enthusiastic and self-confident in facing the problems we confront. Be confident you will find the correct solution. It’s true that as you believe in your mind, you will achieve. It can be harder and take longer than you expect.

Here’s a mantra that is part of the rules for walking along Creativity Street. “Winners never quit, and quitters never win.” Look, no one is perfect. if you’re striving for perfection, you had better be patient and optimistic. Remember, if you shoot for the moon and miss, you might hit a star. Be patient and optimistic. Stay loose.

This last element is pretty simple. Devote time and thought to fully understanding the problem and identifying the best possible solutions. Then select the solution you feel is best. When you make this selection, proceed as if the results are in and you were correct. Don’t look back — look forward to success. A positive attitude focused on the wanted solution that seeks out facts, organizes thoughts without preconceived notions of success or fear of failure. Let them simmer a bit and you will receive a bounty of creative ideas with the confidence to put them to action.

Look, we can only produce results, not control the outcome of any worthwhile undertaking. The mere act of trying beats the failure to try, even if that results in failure … hands down. It only takes 51% to be a “winner.”

Thanks for reading and thinking. The next move is all yours.

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