Thursday, September 16, 2004

Notice What You Notice

Remember that old public service announcement where Dick Van Dyke was teaching kids what to do if they find themselves on fire? (What a weird and eerie thought with many more discussion opportunities in itself ...) It was Stop, Drop, and Roll. There have been other declarations we've gotten along those lines over the years: before crossing the street, it was Stop, Look, and Listen. Even Mac Davis told us in the '70s to "Stop and Smell the Roses."

Notice what each of those commands has in common? If you didn't notice it, don't worry. We're a very fast society these days and the last thing we ever want to do is STOP, right?

I attended a seminar this past weekend by a wonderful author named Roseanne Bane who wrote a book about creativity called "Dancing in the Dragon's Den." She reminded me that in order to be most effective in my creativity, I need to be able to appreciate destruction as well. It's a Jungian thing about embracing your shadow side so it doesn't appear when you don't want it to. She demonstrated this by having us tear up (destroy) colored tissue paper she had handed out to us. It felt great to RIP! Then she had us take those bits of paper and glue them to a piece of cardboard (create). She gave us 5 minutes or so, and then she had all of us stand up and hold up our artwork. It was amazing to see the beauty we had created out of our destruction.

So if we become more conscious - or intentional - about what and how we notice things, we will probably see way more creativity in the world than we ever imagined was there. Simply noticing whatever it is that you take notice of from week to week or day to day or even hour to hour will probably give you some interesting insights.

So STOP sometime this week and see what you notice. I'd love to hear about it!