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Unleashing Creativity: Making it a Daily Practice in 2024

For 2024, I personally will be setting into motion the commitment to build in an act of creativity into every day. Think of it as a manifestation of Break the Tape Leadership's purpose and vision rather than a resolution. While there is plenty of evidence that looks at the bleak staying power of New Year’s resolutions (91% quit by year’s end), there is thankfully evidence on the effectiveness of having regular practices or habits. Habits go beyond intentions and focus on repetitive behaviors that can have staying power. As a creativity and growth coach, I help leaders and organizations reach their goals through desirable and productive practices. Yet for those practices to be sustainable, they need to be enjoyable, accountable, and in alignment with their strengths and values.


hand painted leaves with a notepad that reads 2024

Those that work with me also know that I often remind aspirational thinkers that:

“You can’t hit a goal you can’t articulate.”  

I often suggest creating five statements that help clarify the goal or practice and using those statements regularly to keep progress moving forward.


My Five Statements for Creativity as a Daily Practice

Why five statements? First, odd numbers are easier to remember and in the world of composition they create a more interesting balance and perspective. The human brain can remember five distinct ideas before wandering into the world of distraction and rote thinking. The five statements should be easy, quick, and/or utilize an acronym. They can appear in any order but should comprehensively address the following questions:

  • What will happen/change/be different by reaching the goal?

  • What strengths and values can be deployed?

  • What accountability practice(s) are in place?

  • When will the goal be accomplished?

  • How is success measured?

 

Since Break the Tape Leadership’s purpose is to help leaders and organizations tap into their own creativity for a less boring world, I chose to organize my five statements for daily creativity into an acronym around my business name using the letters B-R-E-A-K.


1. Banish the Boring.

No day will be boring, mundane or without light when at least one creative act is accomplished. Whether it is a minimum of 5 minutes, or an entire day dedicated to creativity, it counts. (And who can’t fit in 5 minutes in a day?) In my world creativity is defined as the ability to combine two separate ideas or actions into a singular output. That means a creative act can be any activity that takes advantage of the do mostly nothing brain network and also involves some sort of kinetic creation (something more than thinking). Examples might be knitting, writing poetry, playing a musical instrument, sketching, photography, painting, etc. It means that there is a tangible output based on intangible inputs. Reading or social media scrolling would not be considered a creative act, but reading or scrolling and then creating something based on any of the ideas or subject matter encountered would be (i.e. journaling about something you read or saw.)


2. Resiliency is in the Doing.

The strengths and values that drive me and Break the Tape Leadership involve fascination with new ideas and possibilities combined with taking action. Rule of thumb: When stuck, do something simple to get started. A small step toward a big idea creates momentum. You need momentum to take the bigger leaps down the road.


3. Execute Every Day.

For this goal I am most interested in creating a practice or a habit. I will execute at least one creative act every day for a year (knowing that it takes 21 days to create a habit). I’ll be moving from best intentions (highly engaged periods followed by periods of bleakness) to a regular cadence. I’m most interested in seeing how a regular cadence changes measurements of happiness, effectiveness, productivity, and insight.


4. Ask for Accountability.

As an individual, I’m highly independent and self-motivated. But for this goal, I’m very interested in how creativity begats more creativity. So, I will be creating an accountability and sharing community using the Break the Tape Leadership Substack platform. The substack feed should be live next week. This is where I will share my challenges, successes, insights and learn from others invested in exploring creativity as a daily practice. It will also allow me to share some of my creative insights and outputs in an effort to overcome one of the biggest obstacles to creativity: vulnerability.


5. KPIs Measuring Joy.

For this goal I could simply track tick marks. But I’m acutely curious of how creativity shows up in various domains. I use Clickup.com as my project and process management system that is simple and allows me to not only track business goals but personal goals as well. I can simply build in a tagging system that will allow me to pull statistics based on my calendar and daily actions. And if I want to get “creative” I can pull it into a visualization or mind map that will also give me insight and perspective based on my “joy meter” that looks at any activity as joy, neutral or drain. The key is to understand what helps engender joy and happiness and what causes a drain of energy. Two questions to answer are:

  1. Does creativity lead to more joy?

  2. What types of creative activities create abundant resources vs. a drain on resources?

With those insights, it will be interesting to look at both the outputs of the joyful acts and the outputs of the draining acts. What should be continued and what should be abandoned?


Break the Tape Leadership helps leaders unleash creativity and potential in themselves and the organizations they lead to generate meaningful momentum. (And in doing so we help bring joy and purpose to your daily practice.)

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