The Mess of Creativity

Have you noticed that creativity can be messy sometimes?

Does this mess of creativity cause you to be frustrated?

This week, Dr Amy Climer shares an inspiring story about the mess that often results when collaborative creativity turns up.


Creativity Is Messy


Creativity is messy. It’s hard to understand this when you look at polished, finished results. You see a brilliant new product, an engaging performance, or an eye-catching book cover. You might even smile as you recognize the creativity that went into it.

We don’t often think about how that end result came to be.

Recently, Marie Forleo, online business and marketing expert, shared a video explaining the process of creating the book cover for her forthcoming book Everything is Figureoutable.

In the video, she and her team explain the process of creating the book cover from idea to implementation. The video revealed the collaborative, creative process that went into the book cover. It conveyed the anguish and excitement, the challenge of collaboration, and the mess of the creative process.

You can tell the experience was both fun and hard. Take a look…



When you look at the final cover it seems so simple. It’s hard to imagine that it came from the work of multiple teams who put in hundreds of hours of work and explored countless ideas. All for a book cover!

Yup! That’s how creativity works. It’s messy. That’s why so many teams bail. They get frustrated. They get annoyed. They struggle with each other. Some work through it and it brings them even closer. Others disengage and slide further into dysfunction.

When teams understand how the creative process works they are able to push through the anguish to the other side. They avoid mediocrity and get to innovative results.

Embrace the messy middle of the creative process. It’s not easy, but it’s worth it!


Weekly Challenge


How good is your team at managing the creative process?

When you are feeling frustrated or defeated with your team, take a moment to pause and pay attention to what’s happening. Is this part of the creative process? What can you do to help the team get more energy and re-engage?


Dr Amy Climer is a speaker, trainer and coach. She also produces a podcast called Deliberate Creative and a wonderful reflection and processing tool called Climer Cards. If your team needs help in understanding how to be more creative, drop Amy a note.

You can find Amy’s original post here.


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