Creativity Alphabet Soup

Alphabet Soup

Before discussing specific steps on the path to creativity, we must acknowledge that there is “stuff” that gets in the way of creativity. 

For convenience sake, I’ve given this an easy-to-remember three-letter name: FBI


Michael’s Defintion of Fear: A contagious institutional conditioned characterized by we’ve-never-done-it-that-way-before-itis.

Afraid of failure. Afraid to try something new. Afraid to risk.

Depending on the severity of the condition, resistance may be futile.

“If your life is free of failures, you’re not taking enough risks. “
H. Jackson Brown, Jr., A Father’s Book of Wisdom


Michael’s Defintion of Boredom: A personal condition characterized by can’t-wait-to-leave-work-itis.

No energy. No spark. No fun.

Caffeine is not the solution.

“The opposite of play isn’t work. It’s depression.”
Brian Sutton-Smith


Michael’s Defintion of Insecurity: A personal condition characterized by 


Sometimes, the Fear that is present in the institution is transmitted to the individual. Sometimes the individual brings it with. Left over junior-high self-esteem issues?

Even though Fear, Boredom and Insecurity may be present, that does not mean that creativity can’t happen. It’s just harder, especially the longer you’re exposed to them.

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed people can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. “
Margaret Mead

I’ve distilled the specific steps which foster creativity into an easy-to-remember three-letter name: CIA


Seek Concentration in:

Time: block out a big chunk of time, or channel your energy for a short time.

Focus: remove distractions (sound, sight, smells, etc…)

“The Zone”: it may take some time to get the creative groove going. Keep at it.


Be ready for Inspiration. Be surprised by what Inspires you. Seek Inspiration!

Pay attention. You may come across something that gives you the creative spark, and it may come when you least expect it.

Get your mind working in different ways. Find a hobby or volunteer in ways that feed your passion.

Hang around people whose creativity you admire.


Anticipation: it’s an attitude.

Anticipation: it’s when you can’t wait to see what you’ll come up with.

Anticipation: it’s all in your head. 

If you want to be creative, stay in part a child, with the creativity and invention that characterizes children before they are deformed by adult society. “
Jean Piaget