Learning Creativity and Innovation From Children


I read something recently that really resinated with me about how we can look at creativity and innovation in a way that we once could, but have learned to suppress.  As adult in the adult world, we can really benefit from the wisdom of children. 

When we approach children with the awareness that they can teach us, we automatically become more present ourselves. As grown-ups, we often approach children with ideas about what we can teach them about this life to which they have so recently arrived.  It’s true that we have important information to convey, but children are here to teach us just as much as we are here to teach them.  They are so new to the world and far less burdened with preconceived notions about the people situations and objects they encounter.  They do not avoid people on the basis of appearance nor do they regard shoes as having only one function.  They can be fascinated for half an hour with the pot and the lid, and they are utterly unself-conscious in their emotional expressions.  They live their lives fully immersed in the present moment, seeing everything with the open-mindedness born of unknowing.  This enables them to inhabit a state of spontaneity, curiosity, and pure excitement about the world that we as adults have a hard time accessing. 

Yet almost every time we need to change, envision, decide on, move forward with, something (in business and in life) it calls for us to rediscover this way of seeing. In this sense, children are truly our gurus. We need watch and learn to be more like we once were.