Respect the Unexpected. Expect the Unexpected!


Psychology 101 has this to say ” The brain remembers what it least expects, so deliver the unexpected “. The brain being the laziest organ in the body is mostly on default mode, plucking our accumulated behaviors and responses that have taken space in its warehouse over the years and wanting us tenants to respond in the  ‘ usual ‘ manner.


That said, in a zeitgeist craving for attention(the most coveted social currency), with all the deficit of time, resources, patience and buying power, default mechanisms will not work.


Build in enough flexibility and buffer to prepare for the unexpected. A margin of safety. Life does throw curve balls ever so often. So, make provision for the unexpected when you design your life. That way, we will not be caught like a deer in the headlights.


To expect the unexpected shows a thoroughly modern intellect. Resilience is all about being able to overcome the unexpected.


Most people want to be circled by safety, not by the unexpected. The unexpected can take you out. But the unexpected can also take you over and change your life.


Probably easier said than done but it is uncertainty which fills life with beauty, excitement, and joy. For an adventurous life, seek not security. Dance with uncertainty to create magnificence and beauty.


Fear is a reaction, creativity is a response.


When nothing is sure, everything is possibleMargaret Drabble


For those keen on understanding the importance of it, I would urge you to read this blog on uncertainty.



Knott Do-able? Or Do-able?

Doorstep at-your-feet delivery, touch screen inspired command and control at our fingertips, the increasing absence of humans in any interaction with an organisation( and therefore the superfluousness of our emotions) and many such in our zeitgeist has made us the sacrificial lamb at the altar of ease and convenience.



In the school industrial complex, we were taught compliance from an early age. Non compliance equalled failure, mind you, we were made to believe that. In order to amplify compliance, people in authority have instilled in us not just a fear of failure, but worse, a fear of fear.



The diktat going around is that of ease and convenience. And the freedom from the fear of failure. A fear of weakness only strengthens weakness. You are only adding fuel to the fire. Fear of failure is a mental virus that stops us from taking risks and trying things in life. It tells you a scary story. It says you are not good enough, and things will turn out terribly bad.



Eloise Ristad put it beautifully ” When we give ourselves permission to fail, at the same time, we give ourselves permission to excel “.



The reason it’s hard to push ourselves, even when there’s no external downside of doing so, is our fear of fear of failure. That feeling, the feeling of insufficiency and doom, pushes us to seek the comfort of compliance instead.



Easily do-able is the default whereas great work be it for enterprise, art, music, literature, new inventions etc stem from us allocating our time to things that may not work.



Failure. The perspective would be to see it as a lure( to create or make things better) rather than see that as a speed breaker.



An interesting throwback on failure can be witnessed in this article from BrandKnew about ” What Designers Can Learn From The Museum Of Failure (Yes, It Exists) “.


It’s good to remember that ” fear is a reaction, creativity is a response ‘.




How about changing your ‘ mailing address ‘ ?

When you look back at life, do you pat yourself on the back or turn your back on life?


We never forget the postal address of our past. Where we often mail metaphorical letters. Mostly letters of beration. Admonishment. Of the mistakes we made. Of the wrong decisions we took. Regretting the missed opportunities. Spending valuable time wallowing in self-pity.


Often taking the easy route or short cut to blaming our younger self for the mess we may be in.


Let’s do something contrarian. Begin with changing the mailing address. What would you be saying to your future self?  And how would you feel when you read that letter in a few months or few years from now?


May be you would realise that the crisis or cataclysm that you are facing right now did not turn out as badly as you feared. Maybe you would express some optimism that you could convert to action. And maybe you would develop some empathy for your past self, who was just doing the best you could.


So, let’s change where we where we post to. Begin at the destination and travel back to a better addressA future back perspective is a much better one than a present forward one.


Nothing is a mistake. There is no WIN. Or no FAIL. There’s only MAKE. Not everything that can be counted counts; and not everything that counts can be counted.


In an expanding universe, time is on the side of the outcast. Those who once inhabited the suburbs of human contempt find that without changing their address they eventually live in the metropolis. Karma has everyone’s address. Yours is in the mail now.


Yesterday has passed. We can treat it as a gift or an asset from our previous self. Having said that, there is no gun on the head. You don’t have to accept it if you don’t want to. Tomorrow is a bigger, better opportunity. But, if you are still defending that stuck project of the past( where you have sunk in big emotional labour among other things), you are not making headway as you can’t show up for the new better. Oh! that sunken feeling!




Creativity is Futureproof !

Did you know? The future apparently is already here, albeit a tad unevenly distributed.


Perhaps a lot of us get caught out like a deer in the headlights because the future arrives slowly and then all of a sudden.


That said, I can understand the obsession behind predicting the future. But why are predictions popular? Because they appeal to human nature. They create a sense of certainty in an uncertain world.


But they are wrong far more often than we assume.


Nobel Prize winner in Economic Sciences(circa 2008) Paul Krugman famously wrote in 1998 ” The growth of the Internet will slow drastically, Most people have nothing to say to each other! By 2005 or so, it will become clear that the Internet’s impact on the economy has been no greater than the fax machine’s.”


That one may have slightly missed the mark 😀. Well, well, the best of them can’t get the future right, so what are we crowing about? The problem isn’t just with experts. No one is great at predicting the future. Much of life can’t be forecasted, diagrammed, or reduced to a PowerPoint deck. When the future doesn’t match our expectations, our projections get thrown out (or worse, they’re still followed).


How about changing the narrative from predicting the future to ‘ creating the future ‘? Now we could be talking! And one of the strongest arsenal that you have in your armory in creating the future is ‘ creativity ‘.


Creativity is human.


It’s global.


Creativity is technology-agnostic.


It doesn’t discriminate.


From people working on the bleeding edge of their fields..


To others bringing more humanity to technology and industry..


The call to action is for creatives to take control of our tomorrow.


In it, we’ll seek to recapture the feeling of optimism, not fear,  for the future. Because in the hands of creatives, the future is bright.


The creative process is often a matter of changing ‘ What is ‘ to ‘ What if ?’. We first observe the ‘ Status Quo ‘ and then imagine a ‘ Status Novus ‘- Keith Reinhard, Member, Advertising Hall of Fame.

The creative process is a process of surrender, not control.


Every time you have an idea pop into your head and don’t muster the self-confidence to act on it seriously, think about the opportunity cost you are likely to pay.


In the balance sheet of creators versus consumers, the world rewards creators by an overwhelming majority. You will get far more from writing 100 blog posts than reading 100.(BTW, all good writing begins with terrible first efforts).


Consumption is deceptive because it makes you feel that you are productive when you are not. Artistic progress is the result of creation NOT consumption.


The myth going around is that creativity and productivity are mutually exclusive. But they are NOT.


So let’s create more than we can consume.

“You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.” – Maya Angelou


Creativity is an infinite game. You can’t use up creativity. The more you use the more you have.


To survive, to avert what we have termed future shock (Alvin Toffler), the individual must become infinitely more adaptable and capable than ever before. We must search out totally new ways to anchor ourselves, for all the old roots – religion, nation, community, family, or profession – are now shaking under the hurricane impact of the accelerative thrust. It is no longer resources that limit decisions, it is the decision that makes the resources.