By Endre Voros, Pathwise Instructor 

Perhaps disorientation is the first step towards Innovation. But what could the second hurdle be? I think that, in general, we are too impatient, too focused on getting to what we think is the goal. This approach often gets in the way of the creative process and it also often leads us towards missing the mark when exploring the potential of an idea or product.

How so?

If we think we know where we are trying to go, if we have a preconceived idea of what the outcome will be, we filter out all other possibilities and become more rigidly attached to our idea of what we think is right.

There is, of course, an ideal cadence and rhythm – one that leads us to engage with enough “pressure” to keep the momentum. Hurrying, it turns out, is only one way to get it wrong. Not engaging is another.

Remember all those great action movies? The mythological ones and the more recent, Marvel comic book hero ones? There’s always this trajectory of the story: life seems ideal, there is a disappointment, the adventure begins, and there is an inflection point where it seems all could be lost.

There are a few more stages that come later, but this is the one that interests me now: the inflection point where it seems all could be lost.

This inflection point is generally one of intense discord.

If we give in to this feeling too much, if we believe that there is something permanent about the state of discord, we lose momentum and cannot find our way back. But instead, if we see discord as just another step along the path to the final destination (for the hero this means a recreation of the world– a recreation which adds something new and essential), then we open ourselves up to deeper and more useful levels of creativity.

I think a common error is that we always forget that we’re just at one stage of an overall journey and we allow the data of that stage to create misinterpretations of what’s actually occurring.

If instead, we allow discord to take its proper place, we then have the possibility of really moving into what the product or the creative idea needs and how it can fulfill some necessary and essential part of the world.

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