"There is nobody so irritating as somebody with less intelligence and more sense than we have." Don Herold
THE VALUE OF PLAYFULNESS IN PROBLEM SOLVING
The March/April 2002 issue of Utne Reader outlines steps for social inventing. The article, "You Can be the Einstein of Social Ideas!" starts off with this advice:
Like other types of creativity,
social inventiveness flourishes when you begin thinking outside conventional
boundaries. Charles Girsch, a St. Paul, Minnesota-based creativity consultant,
suggests that you start by playing with obviously absurd explanations for everyday
events. "If traffic is slow, you'll be tempted to say, 'Hmm. Must be an
accident up ahead.' Instead, try saying, 'Must be a family of turtles crossing
the highway' or 'I expect there's some kind of alien abduction going on.' You'll
be amazed how soon you will be looking at familiar problems in new ways."
Concerned about the homeless in your neighborhood? Imagine a Homeless Parliament, a Homeless Circus, homeless families forming an orchestra, a homeless museum...and on and on. Generate like mad with no regard for feasibility in order, as social invention pioneer Nicholas Albery advises, to "overcome worthy-but-dull ideas." Eventually the two or three best ideas will begin to stand out.
For a creativity tool you can use in staff development, check out the Anti-Ordinary Thinkbook at www.ChildCareExchange.com.
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