MONTHLY PUBLICATION OF THE ONTARIO COMMUNITY NEWSPAPERS ASSOCIATION
‘When Is Your Creative Time?’
When’s your creative time? Do you have any creative time?
Yes! No! I do not know!
Well, let’s pause for a moment, and allow me to ask you to do this simple search. Take a look at
last week’s calendar, or for that matter, look at the last two weeks or past month, and highlight
those times you set aside for your creative time.
Surprised? You are at a loss inasmuch as you cannot find any such time ... exactly the point of this
As a reporter, media rep, marketing executive or publisher, creativity is fuel for the ongoing
nurturing and growth of your newspaper. It not only feeds your paper, it feeds your soul!
New ideas, new products or services, new questions in search of answers and new opportunities
to target for your newspaper’s vitality, both in print and online - all need some time on your
calendar to bubble up into that “aha!” moment.
According to my artist son and many of his fellow artists, creativity is play. That’s the easy part.
Learning to allow ourselves to play is the hard part and the hard work, my son will tell you.
Likewise, to live a creative life, one must lose the fear of being wrong.
Let’s pause again for a moment … some of this sounding familiar to you?
In today’s changing and challenging environment, finding your creative voice is one of the most
critical skills you can invest in. As things change around us, we sometime forget that things need
to change within us also. The heart of that change is inside us - the seeing, the observing, the
Enhancing your creative voice to find new ideas, new answers and new solutions will keep you at
the forefront, setting you apart from others and a step ahead of your competitors. To discover new
things, you will find yourself stepping out of your comfort zone, conceiving and developing some
new ideas while challenging and overcoming some accepted norms. You’ll observe along the way
that as you ASK (Always Seeking Knowledge) questions and uncover new possibilities you will
develop a hunger and a motivation for new learning and SUCCESS!
Let’s pause one more time ... and clarify this thing called creativity.
Creativity is simply being able to conceive, develop and utilize new ideas or strategies when
working with existing resources. Your creative thinking will flourish best in an ASKing
environment that allows increased questioning and thinking plus an acceptance of challenging
the ordinary while utilizing your past experience and knowledge.
Much like a changing a habit or driving a diﬀerent way to and from work... the change itself will
cause you to notice things in a new way, to increase your awareness of what’s out there.
Creativity is your personal treasure! Enhancing it ever so slightly will help you develop new
approaches and find new solutions for every day challenges.
Discipline yourself, a step at a time, to use the power of questions ... within yourself,
brainstorming with yourself, to stimulate your creativity and assure both your continued learning
and growth ... continual questioning will help stimulate the flow of creativity. Once you are
comfortable (and confident) with yourself and your newfound creative freedom, considering
bringing your staﬀ and fellow employees into the loop. Again, the benefits to your newspaper,
your work environment and your life will grow.
When’s your creative time? To find it .... schedule it! Start slowly ... reserve one hour a day, three
days a week, for the first month. At the end of the first month, check how well you did and then
challenge yourself to do more next month. The best time to schedule your creative time? Creative
people will often tell you it is first thing in the morning, as soon as you wake up and begin your
day. And yes, it’s ALWAYS best do it BEFORE you check your phone or email!
Last, but not least, something good is going to happen today ... make sure you are looking for it!
© Murray & Nau, Inc.
Chuck Nau of Murray & Nau, Inc. is a Seattle area based publishing
consultant and sales and management trainer. He has been a speaker for and conducted
advertising, marketing, management and sales training workshops with newspapers, niche
publishers, publishing groups and press associations, throughout North America.
Comments and questions are welcome and may be directed to Chuck via email:
[email protected]. or at (425) 603 - 0984.