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AC Podcast: Creative Inversion

by | The Accidental Creative

Are you trying to squeeze too much creativity out of too few raw materials? You may be creatively inverted.

Todd Henry

Todd Henry

Positioning himself as an “arms dealer for the creative revolution”, Todd Henry teaches leaders and organizations how to establish practices that lead to everyday brilliance. He is the author of five books (The Accidental Creative, Die Empty, Louder Than Words, Herding Tigers, The Motivation Code) which have been translated into more than a dozen languages, and he speaks and consults across dozens of industries on creativity, leadership, and passion for work.

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  1. Robert Longley

    Great episode although I can see it from a different perspective. In many respects I think creative inversion should be your goal. If you are going to build from your available ideas and inputs you are likely to solve the problem with an incremental improvement. If you empty yourself of all of the obvious inputs, you are opening yourself to the universe for inspiration. It’s at this point that truly new and innovative ideas have room to blossom.

    • Todd Henry

      Robert, this is certainly true. My concern is when I’m in an on-demand role that requires me to produce every day, but I’m not positioning myself to have the kinds of stimulus I need to generate those ideas. I also see your point, that de-cluttering and getting rid of the noise is sometimes the best path to clarity and innovative thought. Thanks for your comment!

  2. Otiti

    I listened to this twice and am still processing the information. I think your strategies for dealing with creative inversion are truly powerful because they focus on stoking the firebed of our creativity. You need fuel to keep a fire burning or else it goes out and you’re left with nothin’ but ashes; that’s what happens when we’re stuck in creative inversion.

    This episode is particularly poignant for me because I’ve been in creative inversion longer than I’d like to admit and I wasn’t really doing anything to switch my game up.

    So I love these lines: “Your growth and your engagement is your responsibility, and your work is too important for you to coast. It is.” because now I have no excuse to stay stuck, right? :D

    I’d add to Robert’s perspective about emptying yourself and freeing your mind up for inspiration, and note that even an empty mind still draws on an inner well of creativity that’s been fed by experiences and emotions over time. Clearing your mind is necessary to tune out noisy distractions, but the creative process still circles back to having material deep in your core that inspires you to write or paint or dance or however you express yourself. And the only way to access that material is to lead a rich life; you gotta meet the universe halfway, y’know? ;)

  3. James Thomas Canali

    Two things I got from Creative Inversion, if we don’t feel inspired (creative inversion) —we need to spend more time simply being inspired (asking ourselves or others, what inspires me) and mining our experiences…processing…this is so good to know, because it’s a tool we all have access to! Thanks Todd.

    What are some things that inspire you all to create?


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