Creative Play

All the world’s a stage,
And all the men and women merely players:
They have their exits and their entrances;
And one man in his time plays many parts…

“As You Like It”
William Shakespeare

So here’s the question—what role did you play at work today?

This post, we’re discussing “Creative Play.”   What exactly does “Creative Play” mean?  How well do you root around in the sandbox at work?
We spoke with three people superbly qualified to talk about the topic.

Deborah Roth

After a long career at TIAA-CREF, Deborah Roth decided to transition her life.  She got a Master’s Degree in Psychology, graduated from Coach University (the premier coach training program in the world), and became a certified Relationship Coach through the Relationship Coaching Institute.  Deborah knows how to put fun with a capital “F” into the world of work.

Deborah says that we need to create an environment at work that taps into our creativity.  She claims that symbols are the language of the unconscious.  What does she recommend?

•    Create transformative rituals to enhance every part of your life.
•    Look at your immediate environment—your office or desk space.
•    Create an aura so that people come get your sense of play.
•    Place little things around or on your desk—zen gardens, little toys, a favorite picture or shell to shift the energy and activate your right brain.

Deborah asked that we each “think of a time when you felt the least stressed.”  Was it in the woods?  On a beach?  Go back to that time and keep a bottle of any evocative smell in your drawer.  When you’re about to go into a stressful meeting or make a presentation, take a whiff of it!  For example, suntan lotion which reminds you of the beach.  Our sense of smell is directly connected to our limbic system which is connected to our memories.

Jodi Brockington

Jodi Brockington is President of NIARA Consulting.  Previously, she was VP of Corporate Social Responsibility & Philanthropy at NEXUS Brands and Vice President at Merrill Lynch Center for Philanthropy & Nonprofit Management.

Jodi was adamant that there needs to be work/life integration.  Each person must find their creative space in order to sustain themselves in the workplace.  For her, there is no perfect balance—you need to find your pockets of time wherever you can.  Jodi suggests carving out the time by doing everything and anything from late afternoon pedicures to simply closing your door and putting your head down.  What’s most important to her? To take a break from your environment.  Said Jodi, “To be on your ‘A’ game, you need to take care of yourself.”

Jodi believes that “creative play” derives from your own leadership style.  The important things to focus on:
•    Be well-organized
•    Have an open door policy so you can assist someone or get someone else to help them
•    Play to people’s strengths—make sure people know what their roles are
•    Bring others into decisions about your vision
•    Pay it forward by helping others

Katherine Leask

Katherine Leask is Director of Conferences and Presenting Artist for Bedlam Entertainment, Inc.  She is a veteran actor, director, and has performed Off-Broadway and at major theatres throughout the United States and in Europe.  Katherine has a particular talent to help people achieve “Creative Play” in the work she does.  “I teach people to find a way to express their voice and take joy in it—to have fun finding their unique expression of it.”

For Katherine, “Creative Play” is about finding your own reality—a way of giving yourself a structure that allows you to break down the old ways of thinking.  Katherine suggests you:

•    Throw your preconceptions out the window—when you don’t, you prejudge
•    Push the boundaries and get the unexpected answer
•    Look for surprises from people
•    Consider a  lot of options—imagine how you might deal with different situations in front of you
•    Always look at the possibilities, not the obstacles

Katherine’s modus operandi?  “I enjoy helping people look at what the opportunities and possibilities are and how they behave in their world. 
I bring that actor/director sensibility to that—creating a performance and a character.  What’s so fun is when I can get someone to open up a little, when they realize that they have a special spark.  I love being able to turn that light switch on and help people realize that they have a charisma and an energy.”

Next post:  Compelling Communication—do you have what it takes?

See you then,
The Team at “Producing Your Career”
Producing Your Career is a division of Bedlam Productions Inc.


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Categories: Creativity

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