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From Pillow Slides to Boardrooms

This past weekend, I spent time with my niece and nephew. It had been far too long since our last round of shenanigans, and I missed them! Between their bustling schedules filled with after-school activities, homework, and social commitments, and my own whirlwind of work, networking, and social engagements, finding a date that worked was a rare alignment of the stars and I wanted to take full advantage of it!  I hold the esteemed title of their “favorite uncle”; though whether this is because I am their only uncle or because I let them run amuck around my house is and always will be a topic of family debate. 😊


Since my home isn’t a toy wonderland, if they are eager to play with something, they know they need to bring it along. Sometimes they do, and sometimes they don’t. This weekend, they arrived toyless, but kids, being the imaginative beings they are, found no trouble at all in diving headfirst into play, especially on a lazy Sunday. And that’s when their creativity truly shone through.


In short order, every pillow and cushion in the house was commandeered and artfully arranged into an impressive pile on the stairs. Next, the comforter from my bed was repurposed as the final touch on their makeshift masterpiece. Once this happened, I was promptly instructed to sit at the top of the steps, perched on the edge of the comforter, as they unveiled their latest invention: an indoor slide!!!


Once I set aside the thought that I would be expected to try this slide out, I was amazed at their creativity and imagination.  I was reminded that within each young mind is a natural-born artist, a visionary capable of seeing the world not just for what it is, but for what it could be.  It’s something that all of us were born with.


Unfortunately, as we grow our imaginations often fade into the monochromatic hues of adulthood. The pressures of daily life, the pursuit of practicality, and the fear of stepping outside societal norms all dampen our creative flames, and we have little time and inclination to think creatively or to simply play.  In today’s fast-paced, efficiency-driven world, finding space to nurture our artistic inclinations is a challenge, but it’s a challenge we must embrace if we wish to keep the spark of innovation alive.


This is particularly true in the workplace, where creativity and innovation are not just welcomed but essential for growth and success. Encouraging a work environment that celebrates out-of-the-box thinking, supports risk-taking, and values diverse perspectives can ignite the creative spirit in all of us, yet it’s missing from many of us. From design thinking workshops to brainstorming sessions, creating a culture that allows for experimentation and embraces the unconventional can lead to breakthrough ideas and revolutionary solutions.


As I reflect on the laughter-filled afternoon with my niece and nephew, I’m reminded that creativity is not something we lose but rather something we too often leave behind. By fostering an environment that encourages creativity —at home, at work, and within us— we can rediscover the joy and wonder of seeing the world through imaginative eyes. Let’s not just grow up; let’s grow creatively.


I did take a few trips down that slide on Sunday, it was a bumpy ride but well worth it! 😊


“Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up.” – Pablo Picasso


Have you witnessed or facilitated a moment of unbridled creativity in your own life, perhaps with your children, friends, or even in your workplace? We’d love to hear about it! Share your stories in the comments below and inspire others with your innovative spirit.


Have a fun filled weekend.