April 3, 2017

How to Find Your Zone of Creativity

Today's post was inspired by a video clip that my boss messaged me about sharing to Facebook. The clip is of Meg Whitman, President and CEO of HP Enterprise, on "Integrity & Courage in Leadership" at a talk at Stanford Graduate School of Business (watch the full video here).





The clip is two minutes of Whitman talking personal branding and "finding your zone of genius." According to Whitman, knowing what you love to do and what you're good at is key. Being personal brand-obsessed myself, this really resonated with me and got me thinking. What is the key to finding your zone of creativity?



I think knowing what you love to do and what you're good at is critical to finding and developing your zone of creativity/your creative sphere, too, but there's even more to it. You also need to...


+ Know what you hate to do. 


Just as knowing what you love to do is important, so is knowing what you hate to do. Maybe you're stuck in the middle of a big project. Maybe you cannot get your newest idea off the ground. If you're stuck in a creative rut, it could be because you don't know what you hate to do, or you're pretending like you don't hate what you're doing when deep down... you despise it.

You're stuck on that project because you're trying to strategize the way everyone else does or the way someone else told you to. You can't launch your idea because the way a successful someone else launched her idea isn't working for you.

In fewer words: you hate how you're doing things, which is standing in the way of your doing anything. If you can pinpoint exactly what you don't like to do, you're one huge step closer to finding your zone of creativity.


+ Know who your community is.


I talked about the importance of community in this post (how to build your blogging "squad") and in this post (how/why to build an online community), but it really is so important.

Tweet it: A strong, reliable community can inspire your creativity every day. 


A strong, reliable community— people who help you and support you because they want to, not because they want something in return— can inspire your creativity every day, whether in the form of advice or watching others succeed with their amazing projects, launches, and pitches.


+ Know how you're going to reach your creative goal. 


You don't need an exact creative plan (after all, are any creative plans truly exact?), but having a general idea or some sort of preliminary outline of how you're going to reach your creative goals and find that zone will definitely help you. What is the nature of the project? What will you need to do/what can you do to get there? Who can help you?

Finding your zone of creativity is closer than you think: know what you love to do and what you hate to do, know what you're good at, know who your community is, and know how you're going to reach your creative goal. And get to it. But don't hustle.

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