Monthly Archives: September 2012

Set Yourself Up To Cultivate “Aha!” Moments

Being a creative being you are constantly having “Aha!” moments. In the Acceleritis cloud, however, like everyone else you may rarely notice your own “Aha!” moments.

These insights often go by unnoticed simply because they are obvious to you and you have heard them before. However, your subconscious continues to present them to you because some aspect of the insight has still not been fully realized. There is another layer there your subconscious wants you to get.

Give yourself permission to have “Aha!” moments. Give proper inner recognition to “Aha!” moments. Expect these moments to try to sneak by. Jot down even one-word fragments your mind seems to have some reason to offer you. These may be words and/or they may be images, feelings, or a cluster of all of these in a jumble. What do they mean? What action is indicated?

One test of the relevancy of what seems to be an old idea is, if it is so obvious, have you fully acted on it? If not, what is stopping you?

The day starts with dream wisps fast fading. Assume there is an encoded message that some part of you is communicating to some other part of you. Jot down the content in the fewest words that will bring back the original dream. We call these trigger words because they trigger whole thought-streams and/or other memories encapsulated in the most condensed code-words that capture the essence of the meaning the content has for you.

The shower is another place where ideas seem to come to everyone. Perhaps it is the negative ionization created by the water stream evoking a physical brain process. Develop memory discipline to count the number of ideas you have had in the shower and string together the keywords for those ideas into one funny picture. Have paper or electronics or whatever you use to jot notes close by at all times including right outside the shower and next to the bed and in fact wherever you might happen to be.

Clearing the mind is conducive to getting new ideas. A change of scene helps, especially stepping outside into nature and away from the work you have been doing. A sense of goofing off, not working on anything, just taking a break, a mini-vacation, giving yourself permission to just veg out, deeply enjoying just breathing — this often leads to the highest quality ideas of the day.

As the mind tries to continue what it has been obsessed with, gently cut off any words in midstream. The fewer words the more likely the subtlest parts of the self will be able to get an “Aha!” idea in edgewise.

A large sheet of blank paper can evoke automatic writing and/or drawing, e.g. a freeform diagram with trigger-word ideas or entities or processes in balloons connected by arrows or lines to other balloons with trigger words in them.

Meditation with eyes closed either on a chair sitting up straight, or face down on the backs of your hands on the floor stretched out (Sphinx position), just breathing and waiting and listening can summon a Master voice that speaks only deep truth to you, sometimes when you least expect it.

If you give presentations, creative Flow can occur if you prepare and rehearse but then avoid referring to any notes — just have fun with it, and take the tack “I can’t wait to hear what I’ve got to say.”

Just have fun with every moment and everything else will work itself out.

Best to all,

Bill

Do Something Different this Advertising Week

Volume 2, Issue 25

Can You Make a Quantum Leap in Your Own Creativity?

If you’re in Manhattan the first week of October, it’s likely you will be attending some of the great events that will be happening as part of Advertising Week. The one event that is totally different from all the others will be the first-ever ARF Creativity Playshop led by myself and Richard Zackon, the formidable facilitator of the Council for Research Excellence (CRE). From 8AM to noon on Wednesday, October 3, come join us to stimulate your mind in some new directions conducive to breakthrough thinking. This will be an intensive immersion with groundbreaking participatory experiments that have the power to change your ways of engaging challenges and opportunities at work and everywhere.

Before the event, participants will receive the Human Effectiveness Institute 60 Day Course consisting of a book, a DVD, and a guide; a Playbook designed by Richard Zackon and myself to capture realizations stimulated by the pre-event-through-post-event process; a questionnaire to set your own goals and to later measure the extent to which they were reached; and the Xyte self-profiling instrument, which is a sensitive new litmus paper test to discern your strengths in mental/emotive processing.

During the event, the many sides of creativity will be explored in a participatory manner. Creativity is a complex cluster of dimensions, like intelligence. We know now that intelligence is not a single variable but dozens of interacting skillsets — some cognitive, some emotional, some perceptual, and many intuitive. Creativity is a special case of intelligence involving thinking the unthinkable, transcending one’s own ingrained ideas and style. In order to effect real and positive change, we won’t just talk about these subjects, we will use exercises by which each participant can find their inner truths regarding these subjects, thus creating the environment in which you will be able to discover for yourself how you tick and the levers you can pull to improve upon your strengths and transmute “weaknesses” into strengths.

Not all of the conversation will be about creativity since underpinning creativity are deep layers of mental behavior that themselves constrain or potentiate creativity at the conscious level. So there will be bold theoretic investigations into P300 waves, Observer state, Flow state (the Zone) and other subjects you’ve seen dissected here before, presented in a more comprehensive and systematic manner than blogposts allow.

We will look at obstacles, obstructions to and distractions from creativity, and how to get around them.

The Playshop will be at ARF HQ on Park Avenue and will be part of the Masters Classes offered by ARF University. It’s not called a workshop because the whole point will be that Flow state does not happen if you are focused fearfully on some outcome, the Zone happens when you are enjoying what you are doing for its own sake. We will be there to have fun together, it will be a “play date” and we will all have permission to let it all hang out. Hope I can persuade many of you, my special friends, to be there and to add your own life’s unique realizations, insights and perspectives to the party.

Best to all,

Bill

Win/Win Is the First “Rule”

Volume 2, Issue 24

So many writers have impressed me with at least one thing, if not everything, they said. Crowley for example in Liber Aleph makes the point that there are no rules, just principles to balance in every given situation. Yet probably just a few principles come closest to being rules that apply strongly in virtually every circumstance.

Pondering this, it occurs to me that Win/Win is such an important principle it comes near the top of the list if not at the very top.

In my cosmology we are all holograms of the One Consciousness, or more precisely facets of the one Conscious Hologram. So it follows logically that we would do unto others as we would do unto a reflection of our very own self. This is truly enlightened self-interest.

Even in a humanistic materialistic worldview such as some of my best friends have, Win/Win follows logically from their chosen noble stance. My lifetime favorite writer F. Scott Fitzgerald notes in The Beautiful and Damned and elsewhere that such a stance is even more meaningful if it is taken after assuring oneself there is no moral imperative to do so, no value that is not ascribed, usually unconsciously, à la Shakespeare’s “there is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so” (Hamlet).

The intention and fact of only making agreements that are good for all parties is the essence of Win/Win. It ideally permeates to the minute level of almost invisible tacit agreements going on every second of social interaction. It is the most palpable form of omnidirectional unconditional love.

Win/Win is hardest to maintain when one has a score to settle with someone. We want them to lose, as a lesson to them, so they stop being the way they are. In the end this contamination of attitude undoes any good. “Vengeance is mine” as a concept gives us permission to not carry the burden of corrective punishment, absolving us from that task, and enabling us to continue Win/Win even with folks who have harmed us. More good is done by this than by any other strategy. We ourselves benefit more long-term and often short-term by Win/Win, even when dealing with known sociopaths. By definition one does not make a deal with a sociopath that inflicts harm on oneself because each party is required to win by the strategy itself. It comes down, as so many things do, to a deepening of creativity to make it possible to achieve Win/Win even when up against such a Win/Lose “opponent”.

Two Win/Lose players met years ago and Mr. Z humiliated Ms. Y in front of others. I had a feeling and said to the other onlooker later, “She is going to find a way to get even someday.” Sometime later there followed an unrelated Lose/Lose lawsuit set in motion by a quiet remark to her boss from Ms. Y, which ended with both Y and Z injured.

It is a glorious fact of existence that each of us is a far more powerful player on the stage of this world than we ever suspect based on appearances. Words or even facial expressions can escalate things disproportionately. Win/Win as a deep-seated metaconscious attitude is not only the best way to win oneself, and the way to do the most good in the world, but it is also the best protection against undoing oneself even in a careless or tired moment.  

Best to all, 

Bill

Where Does Value Reside?

Volume 2, Issue 23

I had the pleasure recently of attending the Summer Board meeting of MASB, the Marketing Accountability Standards Board created by Meg Blair. Top marketing people from some of the largest advertisers met with world leaders in the business of estimating value of companies and their brands, to discuss the linking of marketing with finance. One of the most fascinating aspects of this unusual gathering was the discovery that accounting people are also by training philosophers, mentally athletic in the analysis of what value means in different contexts. This gave me ample stimulus to think again about what value is, and where it actually exists in the world.

To cut to the chase, value is in the heart (feeling core) of the perceiver. It is not in the perceived object that the perceiver associates with this feeling of value. Value is a perception/feeling cluster in consciousness. Consciousness is where value actually lives.

Why care? Because value is what drives us, what makes the world go ‘round. This is not just true under capitalism but in all cultures and conceivable (and inconceivable) economic systems. All action is driven by motivation and all motivation by value. We would have nothing to do — no action we would feel like taking — unless there is something we value that leads to such movement. Everything we do is driven by value — the value perceptions/feelings in our own selves.

This also answers the question of why we should care what consciousness is. If all action is impelled by value, and value resides in consciousness, then everything that we value and do, who we ourselves are, is all about consciousness. For us to not care what consciousness is, is to admit that all of one’s life is meaningless, based on unquestioned (and even incognizant) assumptions that at their essence say: everybody else is just going along with it, who am I to stop and question it, ok I am being a victim of herd mentality but so what, so is everyone else, I can’t do anything about it, so why not just drift along with the mob?

This line of self-reasoning would make sense to a person who places low value on independence of thought, and high value on belonging. That person is at a certain place in their own evolutionary path and those values and the ignoring of the Observer state — which uses consciousness to observe consciousness — are natural to him or her at the time. My only hope is that environmental stimuli will catalyze a creative spark, waking him or her up to a world of new possibilities, a vista of depths to life that make life new again, ripe with value.

We are closer than ever now as a culture to coming to grips with the foundational questions of existence. We see books flying off the eBook servers and shelves about something beyond current materialist science, some even gravitating to the center of the sea of questions, which is consciousness itself. But the near-miss of all of these books in my view is emblemized in one of the best, by Daniel C. Dennett, Consciousness Explained. Although evidently deep into the Observer state himself, Dennett is really just still trying to explain what in the material brain is happening that is associated with consciousness. This is typical of the near-miss — itself exciting because it portends that soon we will no longer be missing the point. The point is that what is is this experiential domain — this phenomenological fact that we are consciousness — and matter and energy are merely unproven constructs that we use to label and organize the perceptions we receive within consciousness. Consciousness in fact is the only thing we can empirically prove exists. It is where we perceive and receive value, where our actions begin and perhaps end. To know what consciousness is — is to know what and who we are.

Best to all,

Bill