OK, so, maybe you’re not an extrovert.
Maybe you’re not the life of the party.
And maybe you’re not the type of person who can just talk to anybody.
Does that mean you’re headed up Approachability Creek without a paddle?
Not at all! Especially when you bring creativity to the table.
Because creativity is magnetic.
Let me say that again: CREATIVITY. IS. MAGNETIC.
For example, think about the most creative person you know.
A former English professor.
A crazy aunt from your mom’s side.
Are they the type of person others LOVE being around?
See, creative people are magnetic for a few reasons. First of all, consider this equation:
Creativity = Fun = Smiling = Approachability
Secondly, creativity brings out the inner child. And we all know how approachable children are. Think about it: have you ever met an uncreative five year-old? No way!
Lastly, creative people tend to be challenging. (In a good way, that is.) They make you think – or rethink – differently. They break your patterns. They ask great questions. They make suggestions you never would have considered.
Kind of like my friend Matt Homann. He’s been an idea collector his whole life. He founded LexThink!, a collaborative brain-storming consultancy that brings together cool, big-thinking people to discuss innovative ways to change professional practice.
He’s actually a lawyer by trade, but he tells people not to hold that against him.
But seriously folks…
Anyway, in the last few months, Matt Homan has become one of my favorite go-to guys. Especially when I have a new idea or project. Every time we get together, either for lunch or at a networking event, I’m always bummed out when our time is up.
Because his creativity is just THAT magnetic.
So here’s the point: if you want to be more approachable, be more creative.
It’s that simple.
And don’t you dare say, ‘But I’m not the creative type,’ or ‘I’m a left brain person!’ or ‘I wasn’t born creative.’
Creativity is a SKILL. Which means you can LEARN how to get more of it. Try these four suggestions:
1. Affirm it. Rid yourself of any negative self-talk related to a lack of creativity. Even if you can draw a straight line, never tell yourself you’re ‘not creative.’ If you do, that’s exactly what you will become.
2. Hang with it. Think about the top ten most creative people you know. Plan to get together with one per week. Listen, watch and learn. Their brilliance WILL rub off. And if it doesn’t, at least you’ll have fun hanging out.
3. Practice it. Write. Journal. Use whiteboards. Draw. Go online and search for ‘creativity exercises’ or ‘creative prompts.’ Attend creativity workshops. All these resources are readily available and perfect practice.
4. Study it. How many books on creativity did you read last year? I suggest exploring the works of Edward DeBono, Michael Michalko and Steven Pressfield. Try one a month.
Oh yeah, one last thing.
The other day (while reading a creativity book), I ran across the following quotation from Maya Angelou.
‘You can’t run out of creativity. The more you use it, the more you have.’
Creativity. Is. Magnetic.