Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Thinking Inside The Box

We hear the phrase all the time, think outside of the box. I have never learned to appreciate that motto for creative thought. I also am not the most creative person in the world either. I have no artistic talent and my thinking is strongest in a support role, not an idea role.

But alas, there are times where we have to think outside of the norms and defy conventional wisdom to construct the best ideas for our problems. To follow the analogy however, we're going to need to build a box.

To think outside of this box we need to create better parameters. We need to create structure and routine. We need to create strong habits and organize our thoughts. Once that box is created, then will we be able to think outside of it.

So let's build a box, shall we?

Let's start with the foundation. Everything needs a solid foundation. If a box is not properly sealed and secured, the box is no longer a box. It's an awkward piece of cardboard. The key to a solid foundation is routine. We need routines. We need proper eating and exercise regiments. We need regular sleeping schedules to ensure proper circadian rhythms. We need routines for car and house maintenance.

Creating these routines give us time to think outside of the box when necessary. We gain a foundation of simplicity which allows us to be better prepared to focus on the complex issues when they arise. We're also more relaxed, less stressed, and better focused to handle the strain of finding creativity when it's needed.

Once that foundation is created and solid, the rest of the box starts to take shape. In most cases the boxes are already perferated, so all that's needed is the patience and discipline to finish the job. Lastly with that completed box, all we need to do at that point is take the extra time we have to calmly and constructively fill it with great ideas that we'll all get just by thinking outside of that well structured box.