Challenge the Mundane

Maybe it’s because spring is a time of renewal and growth or perhaps I just need a dash of something different but this past weekend I found myself wandering through fabric stores. My overwhelming desire to create trumped the fact that I haven’t sewn in years.

According to many, everyone is creative and should be making the effort to nurture and celebrate it especially during World Creativity and Innovation Celebrations that occur every year from April 15-21st. 

It started as the result of a headline in the National Post in May 2001 that read, “Canada in Creativity Crisis”. Creativity specialist Marci Segal felt compelled to take action because she truly believed there was plenty of creativity and that it could be used to shape a better future. She made a call to other Canadian creativity colleagues who brainstormed to originate World Creativity and Innovation Day on April 21 to encourage people to use their creativity to improve their lives, their work, and their communities.

The first celebrations occurred in April 2002 in Hamilton and Toronto as well as the Netherlands, Bangkok, Thailand, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and Chicago. The use of the Internet made it easier to spread the word and over the years the celebrations spread to Belarus, India, Australia, Egypt, Peru, Chile, India, Malaysia, UK, Italy, France, and throughout the US. 
World Creativity and Innovation Day became World Creativity and Innovation Week in 2005 so people would have more time to access and explore their creativity and make something from it. World Creativity and Innovation Week begins on April 15th and runs through to World Creativity and Innovation Day April 21st. It’s no coincidence that April 15th is Leonardo da Vinci’s birthday. The creativity and curiosity of the famous Italian painter and inventor personifies him as one of the world’s most talented and best known innovators.

In schools, organizations, businesses, and homes the celebration continues to grow as more and more take advantage of a time to deliberately focus on generating new ideas, using imagination, and making new and creative decisions that will make a difference.

Why is creativity so important?  It adds quality to our lives. Call it a good mood or a natural high but when we create we typically end up with more joy, less stress, greater energy and more and better ideas and ways of thinking. When we tap into and respond to our own creativity and imagination, we honor the gift of inspiration and connect to a universal wisdom greater than our own. Creativity is also a way to find one’s own authenticity because as we create we learn more about what we know, what we think, and what we believe.

So here’s the question and challenge. What might you do this year to celebrate creativity and innovation?

It could simply be a matter of implementing a brainstorming technique or talking about a time when you felt really creative. Maybe it could involve doing something different, doing more of something you love or have always wanted to try, or just being more curious and asking more questions. 

Organizations and businesses can use the week to promote innovation and families can use it to add value to their time together by trying something new. Schools can engage students in activities that spark their creativity. Friends can try a new activity. Even on an individual basis each of us could choose to do one thing differently.
Listen to music, walk, dance, stretch, read quotes and classics. Take time for real and meaningful conversations with colleagues, friends, and family. Write poetry, start up a blog, or dust off your guitar. Take time for meditation, prayer, and spiritual study. Spend time observing and participating in nature. Plant a garden. Paint something even if it’s only with fingerpaints. Invest in a piece of visual art that “speaks” to you or rearrange your furniture. Attend a workshop, book club, theatre or concert. Try a new recipe or organize a potluck where everyone brings something they’ve never cooked before. Tap your nap by using the first stage of sleep where you can be aware of your surroundings while mining your subconscious for creative ideas.

Just do it. Imagine. With a little effort it can be a week where we can each find within us the potential for a brighter, more invigorating, and vital future.

Ultimately perhaps it’s a challenge to be daring, be different, be impractical, be anything that will challenge the mundane and ordinary with the potential and possibility that only creativity and imagination can bring.

Posted on 04-04-10


An acquaintance and I were arguing about an issue similar to this! Thanks for the information.

•Posted by Mark  on  04/21/10  at  07:21 AM


Thanks so much for this! This is exactly what I was looking for.

•Posted by Mark  on  05/04/10  at  12:06 AM


What an interesting read, I agree to that Creativity is also a way to find
one’s own authenticity and there’s really no limits if you play your cards

•Posted by Will Plane  on  09/08/10  at  03:07 PM

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