In Steve Chandler’s book, “100 Ways to Motivate Yourself” he writes that many adults use their imaginations for only 2 things – worry and to imagine worst case scenarios. Ugh. Proactively using the imagination would seem advantageous since what we create with it becomes our reality.
The imagination fascinates me. As a kid I spent most of my time there, later as an actor it allowed me to become the character, it was the heart of all Imagineers work and through it I saw the Red Shoe Zone.
As Imagineers, we even came up with our own derivative of it — Imaginating [verb]: harnessing the power of imagination to create new.
Claire and I were often asked to work in the classroom. We noticed that our signature Imaginating games, played to the delight of students, were equally popular with teachers in professional development workshops. Laughter, excitement, out of the box creative and critical thinking prevailed in both situations.
I later used the same principles to warm-up corporate teams. It was universal, everyone regardless of age or position, loved to Imaginate. The unleashing of unrestricted thinking felt good!
In reality we are doing much more than playing and having fun, we are tapping into our higher order thinking when reaching for the Imaginated response. It is the essence of creativity, combining old ideas to create new ones and produce the all important….unexpected.
It’s commonly thought that imagination and creativity is the sole dominion of those in the Arts (artists, actors, writers) of course they have it, and may use it more often, but it’s in all of us. Especially those who have raised children, that’s the ultimate test of one’s imaginative and creative ability.
Imaginating and the resultant creative thinking allows us to think beyond the parameters of what we know and see things from a different perspective. It’s also a valuable tool when we seek to rediscover ourselves and launch Part II of our lives!
“Imagination is everything. It’s the preview of life’s coming attractions.”
reACTION [to change in the response to stimulus]: Day 16– Belly button lint
Want to imaginate and see how creative you are?
This is something you can do alone but it’s definitely more fun to do it with a friend or in a group. Building on the ideas of others always brings a dynamic that produces really exceptional ‘unexpected’ responses. I asked my friend Karen (that’s her in the picture) if she would come over and play a creativity game with me. Luckily she’s a gamer and said – “Sure!”
Karen was playing it for the first time. However, she has successfully raised 2 great kids so her creative muscle is pretty well developed.
Here’s what you do. Put a black spot in the middle of a piece of white paper.
You have 2 minutes to generate as many answers as you can to the question, “What could this be?”
Karen and I came up with 37. Beat that! Some of our best were— a belly button full of lint, a blackhead on an albino, tunnel in a snowstorm, squished spider in the bathtub, ink stain on white jeans, escaped black balloon, a nose of a polar bear and a mole that needs to be looked at.
We laughed a lot…..which is good too… it opens our hearts and allows our hearts and minds to work together.
Imagine applying this kind of magic to our lives.