Monthly Archives: Oct 2015

Creativity

The God Factor

Our greatest dignity as creatures is not in initiative but in response. God speaks, we hear. He knocks, we open. – C. S. Lewis

I have chewed the knob of my pen and left the nib idle in time past, I have sought the stars at night and had to wait till dawn if inspiration will rise with it; I have tried to fill the air with substance but all that was left was the intellectual dust. I have had days without inspiration, days that the client demanded result or else, the cheque is not gonna be signed. There are days the ‘world inside’ is clumsy, that we have this inward uneasiness, that the mind knows nothing but the ‘writer’s block’, that the brainwave frequency is flat due to several interferences, that the inspiration dead-end is met, there will be such days. The best place to seek solution is to have an external influence for immediate opening and revelation. In the words of Og Mandino, Who is of so little faith that in a moment of great disaster or heartbreak has not called to his God? Who has not cried out when confronted with danger, death, or mystery beyond his norm experience or comprehension?

There is ‘the God factor’ in processes, in making, in designing, in planning, in invention, in modification, in coordination, in creativity. There is no veil that can conceal him in our affairs.  He’s very evident in acts. I myself, I have reasoned God: He’s unreasonable, the reason I go to him for reason.  The best advice I give to myself is to call him in the days when revelation streams less. He’s the Creative Force “…and the Word became flesh”.

 

Don’t beat yourself up against it further whenever you are short of revelation, inspiration or insight; all I’m saying or have been saying is simple: believe in your heart, call Him, he will tell you marvelous and wondrous things that you could never figure out on your own.’

 

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Creativity

Maximized Mentorship

When the student is ready the teacher will appear. -Zen Proverb

I like great lives. Every great man was mentored at point. Albert Einstein had Max Talmey, Da Vinci had Andrea del Vercocchio, Isaac Newton had Isaac Barrow; even in spiritual things, Elisha had Elijah.

Do you have someone you can imitate and emulate his virtue, the finest part of him?

What mentoring does is, the mentor passes the condensed knowledge, the curated experiences, his mastery of a subject and confidence to his mentee. Mentoring cuts your years of floundering by half; the other half should be spent honing one’s skill. Mentoring affords one the opportunity to ask question(s) and receive quick judgment. Mentorship is not monitorship.

Don’t forget to pay attention; everything becomes your teacher when you pay attention. But you have to be willing, disciplined and patient.

*On Africa, one of Africa’s problems is leadership. Many so-called “leaders” in African aren’t interested in the survival and making of the upcoming generation. Leadership is the finer and successful replication of oneself both in skill and grace, worthiness and impression. The joy of life is that you pass your knowledge to someone, yes, to the next generation. The essence of life is that we serve as a bridge of knowledge for the generation to come.

From the Movie LUCY (2014), Let professor Norman [played by Morgan Freeman] be the mouthpiece,” You know…if you think about the very nature of life. I mean, from the very beginning. The development of the first cell divided into two cells. This whole purpose of life has been to pass on what was learned. There is no higher purpose. So, if you’re asking me what to do with all this knowledge you’re accumulating, I’d say, pass it on. Just like any simple cell going through time”.

 

*Tips: Tips to help you maximize mentorship

  1. Know your field/Area needing improvement
  2. Be submissive and patient; you are not in competition with your mentor
  3. Check the mentor’s spirit. Ensure he’s not a slave driver
  4. Have a time frame
  5. Listen and ask question
  6. Don’t become a ‘bug’ on your mentor; don’t demand irrelevant things from him.
  7. Self-study/Practice
  8. Appreciate your mentor
  9. Teach others too
  10. Assess your growth
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Creativity

See through the eye of a child

Children are our most valuable natural resources – Herbert Clark

Stupid thing to do? See through the eye(s) of a child sometimes. Ask a child his solution to a problem. We have heard of and had those “power moments” of brainstorming, the big board meeting, the big tables and the big chairs, the markers with big wigs and their gadgets that lead to nothing.

Adults could be regimented because of their formed opinion and experience but the heart of a child is always inquisitive, curious and wanting to know.  Children aren’t afraid of making mis-take, they see the fun in the activity, and are willing to make ‘trying’ a tool for exploration. Everybody thinks. Everybody including children thinks. This is the age of Experience. Children are quick to state their experiences about places, products and services.

I once went to a “Bank” in Nigeria, after spending half an hour on the queue, a child next to me said, “Mummy, I don’t like this place!” Those lines triggered my thinking system. I was curious to know why he said so. Was it because of the crowd, the long queue, the time spent and wasted? I asked the child, “Why don’t you like this place?” He said, ‘cause he needed to go do his homework’. For the Child, other than spending long time in the bank, there are priorities of his to be taken care of; perhaps the Bank didn’t know that the long queue is an indicator of ineffectiveness.  Of course you will say that the Bank is not an environment for play or a classroom for working on an assignment, but what if the bank makes her brand homely & friendly? What if the bank redesigns its process of attending to customers? What if there is a special section for nursing mothers, for physically challenged? What if the bank values the time of my client’s client invariably? When as a business or a freelancer you have succeeded at making your client’s client better, then you are in business.

The creative prowess of a child can be utilized to solve a problem. Children are valuable natural resources. Don’t be afraid to ask a child to come up with a recipe, the prototype of your next product, the sketch/wireframes of your next app, the answer to your research questionnaire, the script for your next play… The result might be the next BIG THING; the result might just be phenomenal.

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Creativity

Free your mind

The Eyes are useless when the Mind is blind. – Anonymous

We all as Creative professionals are performers. A performer could exhibit stage fright on function. Let’s admit it, the artist shivers at the sight of a blank canvas, a writer could stare at a blank page for hours without a drop of ink, the Composer might dread the sound of silence looming his studio. It is easier to watch the ‘Angel on the piano play’, ‘the butterfly fluttering its wings’ but such grandeur takes immense practice and conduct at act.

Fear has a way of blocking the “muse”, the source of inspiration. The mind breeds various studs; some are bold but lack wisdom; some are skillful but lack a muscle of boldness.   A free mind knows no bound and fear, It is like a boundless galaxy liberated from various species of monsters. To free one’s mind is to allow the exploratory spirit to be at work. Take that step; forget the naysayers, forget those that are ready to ruin before the product is formed and bring your Chutzpah to work.

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Poetry

Fearful Prince

For while the monster blasts its voice behind the kingdom’s hall,

The Fearful prince glued his face to his shield,

Locking himself behind the armoury…

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Others Perspectives

It is happening

It is happening. It is happening now, the loss of vital information needed to connect the dots of time and space.

It was a hare-brained beast that ordered another madcap to set the scrolls in the library of Alexander on fire and tons of works became a mound of ashes. It is happening now. How can Gilgamesh’s fame survive his death if it was not a devotee of knowledge that etched it for posterity? Was it not the guard Yinxi, the famous sentry who appealed to the old master to record his wisdom for the good of the country hence Tao Te Ching? The Bhagavad Gita? Marcus Aurelius gave meaning to his life through his stoical writings and meditation, someone published it. ‘The Sayings of Epictetus’ his teachings written down and published by his pupil Arrian. Lucretius’ Book ‘on the nature of Things’ was discovered in the Monastery. It is happening.

It made headline news, “A Marabout strangled by a group of bandits…because he knew too much”. “Timbuktu attack, a revenge for an unaccepted, unacceptable ideology”. It is happening now. One person preserved the Dead Sea Scrolls, another found it. Atlantis became a myth because of no traceable manuscript.

Piece by piece time can be documented to understand and solve the riddle of our existence. But how can we when we are losing our heritage, our stories, our origin, the cord between man and divinity? How can we when a madcap is destroying our evidences, our relic, our facts, and our antique? Someone somewhere is documenting life, another planning to destroy it (sighs).

It is happening now, “ISIS blew up monuments in Syria”. Someone somewhere in Nigeria is fighting against the advancement in Technology, not because a phone-making company is exploiting “planned obsolescence” but because the better part of his mind is ignorance.

Shhhhh…an arsonist lurks around ‘Gutenberg’s Press’ because Jesus Said, “I am the Truth” and Peter quoted…it is happening.

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Creativity

What creativity is not

There is always the inventive part of what we do. A speaker ends with a pearl of wisdom or cliché every time he speaks, a footballer calculates the angle to best place the ball, a cake-maker blends colors to impress the kids, an architect thinks an additional arc will beautify and make the building monumental, a barber patterns the hair into furrows to successfully displace the chief Mohawk, the clown pauses suddenly to intrigue his audience. There is always the ‘Aha moment’, ‘the transformation of silence into eureka’, ‘the marshaling of sheep against the pack of wolves’; there is always creativity and her offspring roaming the street of our concerns. We can all be creative in what we do. Creativity is making, designing, forging, fabricating, breaking rules, defining patterns and systems. Forging something out of something is creativity. Creativity is problem solving. To pick an existing raw material, modify it, improve it and introduce it into the market is creativity wrapped in profitability.

What creativity is not?
If you can make ‘something out of nothing’ is nothing short of an empyrean production. The God-like imitation. To create nothing out of something is laziness and waste. To create nothing out of nothing is just a fallacy and that is not the abstraction and the rationale of this piece. The rationale is to bring our imagination to work and earn the badge of ingenuity, the laurel of a pioneer.

Creativity is not making stupidity a regular but the discontinuance of it.

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Inspiration Others

A good Site

I woke up this morning to realize that I haven’t/never checked (on) certain people’s blog/site and not ever bothered to take a peep at Bill Gates’ very own, I decided to hunt the link down.

You will find a beautiful timeline of his life and achievements on his biography link (http://www.gatesnotes.com/globalpages/bio). Check on his “improving education” link as well and read his reflection on ‘what teachers mean to me’. Can you recall the names of the great and good teachers that had had influence on your life? Gates did.

I love this page most, an overview of what he had read and what he is currently reading. See how many of these books you have fed your eyes and mind with.(http://www.gatesnotes.com/Education/TEACH). Be cognizant of the fact that he mentioned Steve Jobs’ biography written by the wry and quintessential biographer Walter Isaacson. (We all have something to learn from one  anoother 🙂 . Abundance (by Peter Diamandis) is a great book. If you have never read Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell rush to the store, don’t ask for the price, get one and start readin’.

Did you find Mills and Boon on gates’ reading collection? Best of luck on that.

This title is already a great advice, you don’t have to read it (work hard, be nice by Jay Matthews).

I will recommend you flip through his book too ” Business at the speed of thought”. You will find patterns helpful in the thinking mechanism of this great man. The book for me many years ago was futuristic and prompting. Oh, he didn’t pay me to do this, just thought it might be helpful to you or for someone.

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Perspectives

Like or Dislike?

Someone asked me, how do you feel when your page is liked?

In one word: Good!

For your page to be liked is an indication of approval and message well received? We like to be approved, to be endorsed in our duty…but when not liked? We should keep at what we do; we should sharpen our axe and aim persistently for the trunk of the tree.

If your work isn’t liked, it is an indication that you “the carpenter” are not driving the nail in the right direction; It means value is not reaped from the display of your goods. Be willing to embrace criticism when done out of a sincere heart and assisted growth, not out of vulgarity & parody.

Permit me to ask my questioner, “what will you do when your page isn’t liked?”

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