Expand Your Creativity. [volume 1]

Have you ever heard the term: “think outside the box”? Okay, do you know the origin of the phrase? Complete this puzzle:

Draw four straight, continuous lines that connect all 9 dots without lifting the pencil off the page (or in this case your finger off the screen):

Here is the solution: Click Here for Solution

If you couldn’t figure it out, you probably assumed you had to stay inside the box. If that’s the case, you know have the first major step in thinking outside the box. Eliminate your assumptions. The rules presented didn’t say you couldn’t draw outside the lines.

How do assumptions affect our ability to create success? Write down or type out your answer or answers, and think about what you came up with. This whole post can be applied to just about any area of your life, if you apply it properly.

This is a core element of the Blue Ocean Strategy. The Blue Ocean Strategy is geared towards business, and is spoken on and written into application towards business. But even if you’re simply drawing a design in a competition, or even just for fun, this will expand the creative processes your brain goes through. (refer to my past posts on the brain: Brain Train [part 1] and Brain Train [part 2])

Some DOs and DON’Ts are as follows:

Follow sequence in your plan – if you plot out steps, follow them step by step.

Focus on the big picture FIRST, focus on numbers SECOND. – If you have a time constraint, first take a look at what needs to be done, what your mission is, then think about the time, or the money involved, then tweak it.

Get into the field – see what other people are doing, and ask questions but listen when they answer.

Build enough time into the project – If you do have a time constraint, and you feel it’s a tight one, plan for it.

Approach field work as an anthropologist – Ask questions about the things they love and hate in the particular field you’re dealing with. If you’re drawing something for a contest, you may think of this as a no brainer, but ask what they look for, what “strikes their fancy” so to speak.

Do this work in a vacuum – Don’t do this work in an environment where the creativity is vacuumed out. If you’re drawing, like our examples are following, set yourself down in an inspiration environment.

Go too fast – Haste makes waste. Going in line with making a time plan, or some sort of schedule (preferably a time plan like a guideline rather than a strict schedule) so you aren’t rushing and lowering the quality of a specific part of the work.

Skip steps – If a baseball player skipped a step while running to home plate, the consequence to his action will be simple – he’ll trip and miss home plate. You’re going for a home run, run through all the bases without missing a step!

Too locked into current mindsets – Take time to think, without thinking about others in the field. If you’re drawing something, don’t think about other people’s drawings. Don’t think about any drawings. Just think about your own. Create a vision in your mind, visualize your completed drawing, and do it. However, you will eventually need to make some sort of comparison, but only to see what has been done, so you aren’t copying something else.


This is all part of the Blue Ocean Strategy. I highly, highly recommend you research it, buy a book on it if you can find one, or watch some videos online. If the place or company you work for is having any seminars or speakers on Blue Ocean, GO TO IT. You will reap major benefits. It will not be like any seminar or lecture you have ever been to, and it will be fun – guaranteed!

The book “Blue Ocean Strategy” is published by W. Chan Kim and Renee Mauborgne and you can find it at any bookseller.

Another great post I stumbled across is here: http://techiteasy.org/2006/12/05/nintendos-wii-the-blue-ocean-strategy/

Please comment with feedback on your experiences or anything you know about Blue Ocean Strategy as well!

[ Source: The Change Agent Group ( changeagentgroup.com ) ]

God speed, and Best wishes.


About GN

From brushing your teeth, to handling your money the way you know you should, GN has the experiences, scoops and tips for your disconnected and wired life.

Posted on June 26, 2008, in Advice, Career Development, college, Culture, education, Entertainment, Fun, Life, Lifestyle, Money, News, Technology, That's GN, Tips & Tricks and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. Great article and I have enjoyed reading it. However; thinking “Creatively in the Box”, a presentation that I have published on the web recently not only offers many new creative ideas that I developed and tested; but also challenges that thinking inside the box is even more creative. Here is the link

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