When we try to improve or invent a product or process, we often get stuck in negativity: “Oh, no that won’t work!” Part of the problem is that we need to separate out IDEATION from EVALUATION. These are two different mental processes, using our right and left brain hemispheres, and we can’t do them both at the same time!

The underlying meme for evaluation is “No, because…” When we’re trying to decide between options, we want and need to be able to imagine how they might fail. However, when we start doing this too early, it kills the idea generation process. Idea generation is more like improvisation, in which our underlying meme is “Yes, and…” We accept the proposition that is offered and build on it.

Creativity thrives on volume, failure, and playing with opposites. The most creative people generate the most output, most of which is doomed to failure! Putting ourselves into a playful space and knocking opposing and even impossible ideas against each other can be a valuable means to generate new solutions.

I’m in the midst of designing a creative session for a client, and heavily under the influence of the book Gamestorming…a new game is on the horizon, I’ll keep you posted!