During a recent exchange of emails with a colleague, he mentioned “out of the box thinking.” His comments came along at an opportune time since we were preparing for an event in the fall. Some of his ideas will hopefully be implemented as they are out of the box and really great. “Out of the box” (OOB) pretty much sums up what I did with one of my small businesses for many years. We stepped out of the box, went against the grain and stretched ourselves in all areas of our business. This led us to working on many projects, and even a new company.
During a creative meeting last year, I was really inspired by some fresh ideas my friend David shared with me. While we were discussing various topics, some ideas were shared that opened a couple of doors that probably would have stayed closed. His inspiration and ideas opened up my mind to several concepts and reignited some dormant ones that I’ve since dusted off. Again, “Out of the Box” thinking comes into play and gets my creative juices flowing about stretching beyond what is right now and what could be if I implemented OOB thinking.
Have you felt that your daily routine can sometimes be stifling, not allowing for the creative juices to flow? If you need to get your creative tank filled, then consider meeting with other business owners who inspire you. A creative think tank can be very helpful in cultivating new ideas that you wouldn’t normally come up by yourself. I some times get really inspired by my wife Sheri as we share ideas. It may take creative energy to come up with out of the box ideas, and other times, you might find that the ideas come when you’re driving down the road. Many a day, I’ve found that listening to speakers like John Maxwell while I’m driving, helps to clear my head and set the stage for new, fresh ideas.
Even if you don’t use all the ideas right away, keep them in a notebook or record some on your mobile phone or an mp3 recorder. You might find these ideas come in handy during future creative sessions or when you least expect it. In my experience, OOB thinking has to be cultivated. The more you work on it, the more you’ll reap.
No matter what your profession is: online ventures, sales, marketing, advertising, manufacturing, distribution, etc., I encourage you to stay outside the box and in the creative phase of your business. Get inspired, stay inspired, and step outside of your box today, tomorrow, and every week for the rest of this year.