Tag Archives: Mindful Work

Fulfilling Your Creative Purpose

Think creativity is just play-time fluff? Think again.

In a survey of 1,500 executives conducted by IBM in 2010, creativity was cited as the single most important factor for future success due to the ever increasing complexity of an increasingly interconnected world. From the C-Suite down to the factory line or the reception desk, every member of an organization needs to be tapped into their innate creative abilities.

Complexity

People who exercise their creative abilities and potential at work typically like their job. The constant engagement and challenge provides a kind of freedom that creative types absolutely need.

But, we know that more than half of all workers don’t like their jobs. A lot of factors contribute to this, but in another survey conducted by the Office of Personnel Management in 2011, only 42% of workers said that creativity and innovation were rewarded.

Hmm. Seems like there is a disconnect here. On one hand leaders say that creativity is the most important factor in achieving success. But, it seems leaders aren’t rewarding creativity. No wonder so many people would trade their current job for a new one.

“Creativity is not a fixed quantity, but rather a renewable resource that can be improved and nurtured by optimizing the environment that allows an individual’s creative potential to blossom.” From Inspiring a Generation to Create, Center for Childhood Creativity.

Let’s face it, the workplace has changed and it hasn’t. It has changed in that more and more organizations are employing part-timers, contract workers and freelancers while phasing out full-time jobs. It’s tough to implement part-time creativity (unless one is hired for a specific creative task like a designer or writer). The workplace has not changed in that most successful businesses rely upon tried and true systems to get the job done.

Tried and true systems don’t rely on creative thought or action. They simply need execution.

So, what is a worker to do?

Creative expression is a basic component of living a fulfilling, authentic life that you love to live. Most people desperately want to employ their creative abilities on the job. Evidently less than half of workers really are encouraged to do this. For the half that feel like zombies stuck in a rut walking on a treadmill, here are three choices you may want to consider:

Innovate as best as you can. While organizations depend upon reliable systems, just about every business is focused on performance. Can you find ways to make the system more efficient? Is there a way to tweak what you’re doing in order to make it more enjoyable while improving performance? Innovate if you can. If you’re not in a position that gives you much opportunity, consider the 2nd choice.

Design your own gig. Most of us can’t just quit if we’re not happy in our job. We have bills to pay, after all.  But, according to a report done by University of Phoenix in 2014, 40% of workers want to start a business. If you aren’t happy where you are, consider designing your own gig. Every skill on the market can be freelanced. And there are thousands of service-oriented businesses that can be entered. Focus on something you want to do and then find people who need what you want to do. Simple concept, not necessarily easy.  However, most people I know have something on the side. If your side gig finds some traction and a market, who knows, maybe your gig will become your main source of income and satisfaction.

Piano Hands

Fulfill creative expression outside the workplace. There are a lot of actors and artists that sling coffee and wait on tables. Conversely, I know high level executives who turn financial deals during the day, but pick up a paintbrush at night and on the weekends. Remember Richard Gere in the movie Shall We Dance? He was a corporate attorney whose train passed by a dance studio on his commute home. One night he got a shot of courage and got off the train. He began dancing in secret. Every day on that train the tension within him grew – something was missing. He didn’t want to leave his well-paying day job – he just wanted to dance. His life became richer and more fulfilling – especially so after his wife discovered his secret passion.

So…what’s your art? If you don’t care about income and just want to give freedom to your creative voice, what are you waiting for? Get off the train!

Living to Work, or Working to Live?

It’s so strange…

In survey after survey the findings are eerily the same: most American workers don’t like their jobs. In a 2014 survey prepared by The Conference Board, and reported by Forbes, only a little more than half of the people working actually like what they are doing.

They live to work. The job is a paycheck.

There’s nothing wrong with that, nothing at all. In fact, so many consider themselves lucky to have a job at all. I know many who were devastated by the Great Recession, some of whom were out of work for many, many months (some, years). They feel fortunate they have the job they are in now. But, two things can be equally true – they may feel fortunate, but they also would rather be doing something else. Something that fulfills them authentically.

What is it for you?

It’s said that Carl Jung (the anti-Freud) thought it was most fortuitous when one of his patients had lost his job. That’s when the real work could be done. What would be possible if you did the work before that happened? What if you started right where you are today?

Given the landscape today, with uncertainty being the only thing that is certain, most agree that we should all have a back-up plan. For many that plan includes having a gig on the side.

Some people invent things. Others write for blogs. I imagine that some still sell Amway and Herbalife. Some study to get their real estate license, others go back to school.

All of that is cool. Deciding to create a separate gig is part and parcel with the journey toward the authentic life – the life you love to live.

For me it is writing. I’ve always written – even in the jobs I didn’t like all that much. Writing has always been at the core of what I do. And now, with Blazing Mind, I write about the things I care most about – helping others realize their potential, encouraging them to grab their brass ring, follow their bliss.

For me ( and thousands of others, it seems), I discovered a community called Wealthy Affiliate. My objective is to establish Blazing Mind as a brand that people will trust. To do that I needed the knowledge and tools to accomplish this goal. I’ve found that at Wealthy Affiliate.

It’s like a university where one can learn just about everything there is to know about online marketing. The trainings are complete and diverse. What I didn’t expect is the supportive community – you’re never on your own.

And it’s free to join.

At no cost you can receive the basics. If you want to pay a little you get a lot more. If a part of your dreams is to establish an online business, I recommend Wealthy Affiliate.

But, whatever it is that’s whispering in your ear, whether it’s something that has taken silent residence in your soul since you were a child, or it’s something that caught your interest last weekend – whatever it is – you owe it to yourself to investigate and take action.

If you’re tired of living just to work, if you’re a part of that 53% hating what they are doing – take the first step toward your dream today. Maybe you’ll strike gold, maybe you’ll just gain more knowledge. Either way, you won’t regret taking that step.

Just like drawing a paycheck, there’s nothing wrong with that. Nothing at all.