Creativity Bootcamp: Socialize

April 27 2010 – 02:42pm

This is week 4 of Creativity Bootcamp, based upon the Eight Life Hacks for Creative Thinking. Last week, I told you to Use Your Senses by cooking something. This week, I want you to Socialize.The more you socialize with others who have genuine interests, the more you get the opportunity to observe the patterns that make passionate people successful at what they do, and the more you begin to see the opportunities that are present in your own life.

This week: attend a social gathering around an interest that is outside of your core competency (but is still something about which you are curious). If you’re a designer, go to a gathering of computer geeks. If you’re an architect, go hang out with some web designers. As you talk with these people, what do you notice about them that is different from what you observe in people from your own field? What are some similarities that you find?

Sometimes when we get too involved in a particular interest, we forget that there are communities around other interests, which approach things differently. I’ve encountered many different communities of interest working in Advertising, traditional Graphic Design, Architecture, and startups – and they all have their own unique ways of seeing the word, and different sets of things which they value.

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For example, the people I encountered working in Architecture tended to have an appreciation for design, history, and credentials that was completely different from what I encountered working for startups in Silicon Valley. While an Architect will tend to be interested in the material honesty of a real brick wall vs. a brick veneer – the tech startup person tended to be interested in disrupting the status quo. When I moved to Chicago, I wanted to reconnect with the Architecture community, so I went to a Young Architects Forum happy hour just to get that fresh perspective.

Where can you find these groups with which to meet? Meetup.com is probably the best place, but there’s also Yahoo Groups, Google Groups, or even Craigslist.

So get out there and have some conversations with some people who are passionate about something that may just be a curiosity of yours. It will open your eyes.

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This post is filed under Creativity, Life Hacks.