Stop Fueling and Start Driving

America values two things more highly than just about anything else: creativity and productivity. Once one might have said wealth or ease were the highest cultural values, but in the past several years a discernable shift has taken place. Entire genres of literature are devoted creativity and productivity. Conferences and webinars are built around them. Seth Godin and others like him helped to make these values valued and now ride their wave. People devour TED talks and blogs in a hunt for inspiration and to learn the latest life hacks and new ideas.

A strange thing has happened, though. Two values built on invention, innovation, and formation have been subverted for the sake of consumption. Instead of becoming more prolific in the production of goods and services in a creative manner we have become consumers of information. We have settled for intake instead of output because it makes us feel like we are involved in creation and production without actually doing any of the hard work.

Creativity literature — all those books, seminars, conferences, blogs, and TED talks — should be viewed like fuel for a car. If you are heading a road trip, getting from point A to point B, you need fuel. But it’s driving that gets you there. Gas up the car and nothing happens; turn the key ignition and hit the highway, then you’re going places. Somewhere along the line we confused filling up the car for actually traveling.

And like fueling, consumption of creativity literature should be a tiny portion of how we invest time and effort. It has value. It does provide inspiration and motivation. It stocks with ideas and gives us what we need to do the work, the driving. But without hitting the gas nothing is ever actually produced. Our ration of consumption to production should be 1/5 or 1maybe even 1/20. For every TED talk you watch or hour you spend reading David Allen or Seth Godin you should produce 5 blog posts or spend 20 hours on that project, be it a work of art or a business proposal.

If you want to be more creative or productive nothing will improve you faster than work. And consumption isn’t work. More often than not, it’s a sorry, rationalized excuse for “creative activity.” You know what inspiration and motivation that aren’t put into action are? Nothing, they are nothing, just noise and a stimulating mental massage to convince you that you are doing something worthwhile. All that fuel in your tank is nothing but latent energy until you fire up your engine and drive.  That’s when creativity and productivity actually happen.

photo credit: loicdupasquier via photopin cc

Introducing: Creative Coaching / Brainstorming

Okay, I had this brain flash. I love helping people be creative. I love helping people overcome their fears and get a project started. I love helping people take something boring and turn it into something creative. So I want to do that. I want to get a bunch of us together online and talk about how we can be more creative.

So here’s what I’m going to do. On Saturday, July 14th, at 12pm EST, I’m going to do my first ever, online virtual creative coaching session. Using Skype (or some other tool), we’re going to talk about creativity, and what keeps us from being creative. We’re going to talk about using our creative gifts for the glory of God. We’re going to talk about songwriting and novel writing and gardening and sewing and all other creative endeavors. I want to help you get moving, get going, get creating for the glory of God.

Here’s what you’ll learn:

  • How to overcome the fear and actually get started.
  • How to keep going in the face of resistance.
  • How to finally finish that project that.

I want to help you become a creative ninja.

Now here’s the thing: I can’t do this for free. I wish I could, but I’m not that rich. So I’m going to set the participation price at $50 and I’m only going to accept 10 people for this first session.

If more people sign up, I’ll do additional sessions based on a first come, first serve basis.

Are you excited about this? I hope you are, because I am! I can’t wait to get talking to you guys!

If you want to sign up, click on the button below: