Five critical skills you need to pivot: #1 Creativity during a system shock

By Jacqueline Allschwang
Raizcorp Guiding Quality Manager

It seems as though we are all living in a dream or, more accurately, a nightmare. What is happening right now is surreal. In the dictionary, “surrealism” is defined as a twentieth-century avant-garde movement in art and literature which sought to release the creative potential of the unconscious mind by, for example, the irrational juxtaposition of shapes. (If you’re interested, you can Google the Spanish artist Salvador Dali who was a leading figure in the surrealist movement.)

I have been observing the vast range of responses and reactions from different people in my life to the events happening in our world. I see many grieving over the loss of their imagined futures, some are angered by wrongs committed against them, while others are experiencing deep fear and anxiety relating to their loss of control. There is a sense of powerlessness and rising worry about the uncertain futures we are all facing.

Some people, on the other hand, continue to spread messages of light, hope, kindness, unity and love, while yet others are choosing a pragmatic approach and are focusing on springing into inspired action and are already planning for a future that we cannot yet even begin to imagine.

As always in a time of difficulty or crisis in my life, my response was to turn my attention inwards and seek inspiration from a little red book called A Guide for the Advanced Soul which was given to me many years ago by a dear friend. The idea with this book is to hold it in your hands for a little while and then allow it to open randomly to reveal a message of wisdom by a sage.

Here is the wisdom that the book shared with me today:

“Time is an invention. Now is a reality. So much creativity is happening for the simple reason that we have withdrawn ourselves from the past and the future. Our whole energy remains blocked either in the past or in the future. When you withdraw all your energy from past and future, a tremendous explosion happens. That explosion is creativity.”

Extract from The Goose is Out by Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh

With all of the chaos and uncertainty in the world right now, there are five critical self-leadership skills that we, as entrepreneurs and individuals, need to activate immediately. These will be particularly relevant for people in industries that will be the hardest hit during the COVID-19 crisis – entertainment, education, travel, leisure, hospitality, health, beauty, etc. These five critical skills are: creativity; yearning for learning; resilience; adaptability; and proactive responsibility. These skills will help us to lead ourselves through the crisis and survive the social, psychological and economic fallout.

I will talk about all five but, in this first article, would like to focus on creativity.

Creativity is the ability to create something from nothing, the ability to seek, see and seize new opportunities, to find the cause of problems and find innovative ways to solve them. It is the ability to flexibly adapt to new situations, to apply one’s imagination to solve complex problems and to turn ideas into physical forms.

But before we can start becoming creative, we first need to see ourselves as creative beings, and we need to believe that we have the capability to pivot quickly and create new. Most importantly, we must embrace our individual gifts and talents and start exercising our creative muscle by engaging in practices that open up new neural pathways and inspire constructive action.

Below I have shared four articles that offer tips and guidance on how you can develop your creativity: