Thursday, September 27, 2007

What Color is Your Plane?

Today's post is a guest post from Jim Moon of jimmoon.com.

Many people are intimidated by the use of creativity and imagination within their day to day lives.

Their days become bland and existence just becomes commonplace. I learned a while ago that if you try and interject a little creativity and imagination into your day to day activities, life becomes much easier and enjoyable.

It is very disheartening to me when I hear people claim the they are not talented, or creative. How can you not be creative in one way or another?

A few years ago I learned the true meaning of creativity and imagination from the most unlikely place. One rainy day I went to the mall to pick up a few things, and I would have never imagined, that from this trip I would learn the true meaning of imagination and creativity.

When I parked my car, it was raining pretty hard, so I figured I would wait it out for a few minutes. After the rain slowed, I decided to make a run for the doors, without my umbrella.

Once I was at the door, I was greeted by a friend; we talked for a while and then she left. While standing there, I noticed a mother and her small child, probably about four years old. Both of them had umbrellas and were standing in the rain. The mom was protected from the rain under her umbrella, but the girl had her umbrella in front of her with the handle to her belly, and was twirling it.

The girl was pretending to be an airplane, flying around in circles, twirling her umbrella furiously like the propeller of the plane. The whole time she was describing the plane she was flying to her mom, pointing out all the details: the tires, the wings, and the color of the plane. Then she asked her mom:

“What is the color of your plane?”

In my head, it clicked that this the true untainted meaning of imagination, from a 4 year old. I asked myself that same question: “What is the color of my plane?”

I couldn’t answer.

As we grow into adults, we often forget how to imagine, or how to be creative because we don’t allow ourselves that freedom. We tend to believe there is no place in adulthood for story time or make believe. It’s all business.

This is where we are wrong. When we allow ourselves to imagine and be creative, it actually strengthens our ability to create.

Next time you’re in the rain with your umbrella, put the handle to your belly and ask yourself: “What color is my plane?”

Thanks for reading…

Jim Moon

2 comments:

Jim Moon said...

Hey Geoff, Great blog !

Jim

Geoff said...

Jim,

As an experiment, I acted like I was holding an umbrella. I asked my four-year-old daughter, Jamie, "What color is my umbrella?" Without reservation, she said "Yellow". I love that she "saw" it and went along.

Great stuff you've got here.

Geoff