What does Idea Deprivation Feel Like?

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I am the type of person who thrives on ideas – coming up with ideas, finding connections between ideas, learning about new ideas. Unfortunately, I am not always able to live true to my idea-loving nature. Sometimes, I go through periods of time where I am pulled away from ideas. Recently, I’ve become better at finding outlets for getting my ideas out of my head and into a productive place. But, this was not always the case. Here’s a description of what idea deprivation feels like.

In early 2009 I was under a significant amount of pressure. There were numerous tasks on my plate that required detailed thinking (and, I’m not the detailed-type), working within the box, and lots of routine. As each day passed, I felt my creativity being pummeled into non-existence. Then one day, I was invited to a client meeting to discuss all the ways in which the brand could create a relationship with the consumer. The team began to develop ideas. As the momentum of idea generation increased, I began to feel a warm glow radiating through my brain. The sensation started in the back of my brain, traveled left, veered right and pushed toward the front of my head; connecting ideas and creating a sensation of pure joy. At this point, I realized I craved ideation. I also realized I had been living in a state of idea deprivation.

When I was coming up with ideas I was in a state of “flow.” In, Michaly Csikzentmihalyi book Flow, he stated, “The happiest people spend much time in a state of flow – the state in which people are so involved in an activity that nothing else seems to matter; the experience itself is so enjoyable that people will do it even at great cost, for the sheer sake of doing it.”

When I am living my life within my preferences and style, I am in a state of flow. The notion of generating ideas, being original, seeing patterns and creating connections provides a high degree of satisfaction.

What’s did I learn from this experience? Find your flow and you will be happy! Spending too much time doing things that are outside of your natural preferences causes stress. For me, something as simple as writing down all my ideas, then blogging about them has helped tremendously. It provides an outlet for my ideas, gives me the opportunity to give back to the creative community, and helps me connect with like-minded folks.

Thank you for your interest in my blog and for sharing your energy and enthusiasm!

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