The world is currently experiencing a storm on all fronts. Economic historian Adam Tooze popularised the term polycrisis for multiple challenges happening all at once – from climate change to wars. He finds the variety of different shocks of the type we are dealing with right now extremely unusual and told Time magazine: “It’s an indigestible mixture of ingredients that do not normally go together in a constellation of forces.”
Our task is to stir up potent responses to devastating events, as well as to settle troubled waters and rebuild quiet places.Donna Haraway
Especially in times of crisis we need creativity to find solutions. Creatives examine experiences and use previously collected knowledge and abstract thinking to develop insights and innovative ideas. Evolution is indeed the result of creativity; crisis sparks innovation. Those who survive and strive in unprecedented times have the ability to welcome challenges as opportunities to be and do better. Like artists they enthusiastically put their creative gears in motion and I have previously written about how we can all learn from artists.
Fortunately creativity is limitless and can be cultivated. Creative Abilities strongly depend on mindset and habits. Especially during challenging and stressful times these abilities need to be nurtured and cared for. I am participating in the Mindfulness Collaboratory at the PRATT Institute in New York for mindfulness practices as creative leadership tools; it has helped me with creative ideas and output. Other creativity-friendly habits include digital balance, time in nature and regular movement.
The future belongs to creatives. I will be speaking about creativity for future in a free online-workshop this month hosted by Collaboratio Helvetica on 26 October, 19:00–20.30 CEST, and you can register for it here now.
Times of polycrisis can be times of poly-innovation, if we find the courage to leap into the unknown. As Henry David Thoreau once said: If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.