Einstein: the scientist and the artist

Today I’m researching for a talk next week, on ‘Creativity in Business’. I could do something I’ve already done- but I prefer to put together something new. So I’m researching the creative icon that is Albert Einstein. I’m writing this blog mid-research- as I have had a jump out of your chair  “Yes!” moment. Do you have those?

einstein-violin

Albert Einstein is famously known for the quote “Imagination is more important than knowledge” but there is so much more to his thinking on creativity. As well as a scientist Einstein was an accomplished musician he played the piano and violin. This recording of Einstein playing Mozart has only recently been discovered.

Music played a significant role in his life. If he was stuck, he might play his piano and when finished, he’d often say “Now I’ve got!”. The playing of the piano not only allowed him to take his mind off ‘the problem’ but also stimulated his creativity in a wider sense. There is now evidence to suggest playing  music can increase your ‘intelligence’ and brain elasticity- which is a big part of creative thinking.

What was most interesting in all of this was also finding out that Einstein didn’t think in words- but in ‘images, feelings and musical architectures’.

“”I very rarely think in words at all. A thought comes, and I may try to express it in wordsafterwards” 

Just for a moment consider how our working practices, problem solving and decision-making are all based around words- either written or spoken.

Einstein is also big on intuition and inner knowing.

“All great achievements of science must start from intuitive knowledge. I believe in intuition and inspiration…At times I feel I am right while not knowing the reason”

Whilst I’m sure no business would object to an image of Albert on their wall- would they also welcome the use of ‘intuition and inner knowing’ as part of their regular business practice? Einstein is not only an icon for creativity but also for intuition in ‘the board room’.

The final nugget from my reading today Id like to share with you is this: ‘personal creativity enables professional innovation’. Wow!

So why did this research cause a Yes! moment?

I’m working on my own big idea at the moment, which is partly based on past experience, but largely based on intuition and inner knowing.  Firstly Einstein has just given me permission for this to be more than okay- thank you.

Secondly, and more significantly the subject of my big idea is relates to thinking through images. I’ve always had a strong feeling that people can have better ideas, express themselves more, be more creative and innovative if they just ditched words for a while and learned to access their own visual langauge.

There’s so much richness in the ‘right brain’ and I’m going to create a space for people to explore it, at a deeper level, in a buisness context. Can you imagine the potential? Today was one of those dots on my journey as I bring this idea into the world.

 

Read more about Einstein’s thinking here

 

 

Advertisements

After the party

A party to celebrate "Who says you're not creative?"

Last week I threw a book party!

Over the last 18 months I have been working on a book “Who says you’re not creative?”

I finally published and celebrated this milestone in my life on Monday July 22nd- which also happened to be my birthday. (I usually ‘take stock’ on my birthday so this seemed like a good day to launch!)

I was overwhelmed by the support in the room- around 30 people came after work on a hot sweltering Monday evening. I showed my book to the world: business pals, close personal friends, my husband and son. My presentation went well, I felt relaxed rather than nervous and I had lots of positive feedback. A little light drinking was also had- including a matching blue cocktail which the Manager of the bar kindly supplied- what a party!

A week after the party

So after all the fun and celebrating what happens now? Now that people will begin to read my work? Am I nervous? Maybe slightly. Writing a book is an interesting process on many levels. During it’s creation you question your credibility for writing a book. You also think of particular people, maybe work collegaues or family members, that will read it. What will they think of it?? Will their opinion of you change for the worse?

For me to have published I had to confront these questions and be able to deal with them. On a concsious level I feel ok about everything. My job, for me, was to put the book into the world. I needed to see if I could do it, I needed to discover for myself what I thought about this fascination subject that is the basis of all my work.

I recently re read Susan Jeffers book Embracing Uncertainty and she said something that struck a chord. She gave the example of Drew Barrymore ‘letting go’ of her movies once they were released. She almost kissed them good bye and disconnected herself from what people might think of it- as this was beyond her control. Jeffers calls this the ‘scissors of the mind’ exercise. “As long as you are tied [to an expectation] you are not free”

An audio I recently listened to also provided a perspective on this situation I now find myself post party.   ‘You are not the opinion of others..in fact you are not even the opinion of yourself’. This took me a while to understand but once you get it- it’s great one to have as part of your belief system.

So it’s gone- I’ve done my bit to create it. Some people may not like it- others may love it. But if there’s one thing in there that inspires someone to change and create something positive for themselves – I think that’s pretty good. Also- as long as I like it- I’m ok with the opinions come my way.

Post party feedback

So far I’ve had a couple of tweets back. Saying ‘love your book’ which is great. A friend of mine Deborah Burdette also mentioned me on her blog today.

“I had a major clear out of my office this morning. I’m in need of some fresh ideas and the thought was that if I clear my desk for new things I’ll clear my mind for new things too.
I’m reading ‘Who says you’re not creative’ by my friend Prith Biant and will be doing some of the exercises she recommends to get some INSPIRATION!”

I’m meeting her on Friday so I’ll be able to chat more then.

Do I have post party blues? No not at all. Now is just the beginning of more that I want to create around the book. I have a vision board full of ideas! More new workshops, an audio version, note cards with quotes from the book, may be even a full colour version of the book. This is just the beginning- the party in my head has only just started!

The launch party photos

book marksbook small944241_10152063367877355_1137032302_n

Wow the launch – what a fabulous evening in beautiful Cardiff Bay! Thank you to all the lovely people who came to share the moment with me.

Steve Williams: At @prithb‘s book launch. Great to see so many here. Let’s start #daydreaming again!   Aimee Bateman: Great evening at @prithb new book launch party. Lovely to see @GreenGrassWales & @moneywales also. Victoria Dere: Great book launch @prithb. Looking forward to reading Who Says You’re Not Creative. Lee Sharma: Congrats to @prithb – great turnout at the new book launch in the Bay. Love the personal message in my copy #GoPrith Clive Thomas: Enjoyed @prithb ‘s book launch tonight – fabulous book “Who says you’re not creative” #buyitnow! Gareth Jones: Fantastic evening celebrating @prithb‘s book launch w/ @CoffeeAppleUK @meirionm @ZokitCardiff @GreenGrassWales and more. Very enjoyable. Neil Lloyd:  Looking forward to reading @prithb ‘s new book

standing  Picture7Picture8Picture2

Picture18   Picture11 Picture13 Picture12  Picture16 Picture15 Picture6  Picture10  Picture1Picture3

“I’m going to take this book on holiday with me along with Celestine prophecy which I haven’t read for ages. Will come back renewed!”

“Wow you were so inspiring. I have to give a talk later this week and now I feel much better about doing it. I’m going to read this book tomorrow morning first thing!”

“I’d like to buy 3 books please. One each for son and daughter and one for my business colleague who is my Sparkler!”

“I felt very inspired when I got home and can’t wait to read the book. It will probably live on my desk in work xx”

10 people also signed up to explore their creativity through for my new ‘Break Out Break Free’ workshop which is based on the book. Can’t wait to put that together later this month.

Please do post your comments about the book on here as the website is still under development.

The book is now available on amazon. http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1489574026

P.S Thank you so much to the gorgeous people at Salt who provided complimentary snacks and the co-ordinating blue cocktail! It all added to the magic of the evening.

Proof arrives- reactions from my aunt

I set this blog up to slowly release the book into the world prior to publication. I’m pleased to say that this is coming closer. I’m just at the final proofing stage of the printed copy. I made this short video of me opening my parcel as it arrived …

It’s also been an interesting process showing the proof to people. At the weekend I showed it to my aunt who is just turning 70 next week. I thought it would be the perfect answer to the usual question of “So what have you been up to?”

She does the crossword daily and as she saw the slim volume she assumed she’s be able to ‘skim it’ while I was there. (Luckily this was not the case – she did pause for thought between sections)

It’s fascinating and slightly nerve-wracking to have someone read the book in front of you. In the introduction I talk about ‘taking a leap’ from employment to self employment. This immediately struck a chord with her and she went on to tell me about the leaps of faith she had taken in her life and the risks and pay offs that were associated with them.

Her interpretation of how she ‘thinks outside the box’ was fascinating to hear and her views on the innocence of childhood and play was also something she picked up on and wanted to discuss.  Unfortunately other people in the room didn’t know what she was reading, as there was only one copy, but she was commenting as if we all had the book in front of us!

One of the funnier comments she made, apart from “Who is this Ken Robinson chap?”,   was in relation to the section on “There is no one right answer”. Here’s a short extract:

If you are to take a more creative path you have to let go of this notion of the ‘one right way’ and accept there are many ways of doing things. You may also have to believe that there is no right or wrong way of doing anything, just different ways.

“It’s going to sound arrogant but I am always right at most things. Aren’t I?” She said this with all seriousness turning to her husband for support. “Of course” he nodded. Maybe she’ll want to spend a bit more time on this section when the final version comes out.

One final point of her reaction to the book, she suggested it would be good for people ‘suffering from depression’. I thought it was a book primarily about creativity but for her it was just as much about positivity. Interesting how we write with one intention but people then add their own layer of meaning to something…

On the plus side, she as a 70-year-old great-grandmother, identified with the book and wanted her grand-daughter to read it too! So maybe it has a wider appeal than I had imagined. On the downside being the avid crossworder that she is – she spotted a typo that I and the proof reader had missed! 🙂