“People remember different in a way they don’t remember better.” -Christopher Lochhead
Think about that for a minute. ‘Different’ versus ‘Better’. In contrast, most of what we are taught or the habits we model involve talking about or other wise proving the ways we are better than someone else. From the way corporations are run, (who has the biggest bottom line in the industry), to school sports, (who runs the fastest), to personal finances, (where do I stack up against my peer group?) You may deny being part of this and maybe you are amongst the lucky few who have transcended this way of thinking, but take a look around. Most people have not.
I’ve never liked this form of competition. There is no way to play the game of being the best unless there is an implication of someone or something else being not as good as you, or your thing. There is a rank and a scale. You are the best and someone got knocked out of that spot to allow you to stand there. This has been a fact of life for a long time. But not anymore.
Increasingly, we have very little capacity to care about how your features or product offering or service is better than the next one. There is way too much information being hurled at us to make a reasonable comparison. And our biases cloud all that activity anyway. There is simply too much noise in those nuances of ‘better’. What is the solution to this? To be different.
Obviously not just a little different, but as Seth Godin would say, ‘remarkably’ different. It is important here, not to misunderstand the meaning of remarkable. Remember the definition of the adjective remarkable is ‘worthy of attention; striking’. Anything which is truly different makes us stop for a second and think, maybe even say, hmmm that is worth something to me.
Of course, it goes without saying, these remarkable things are not for everyone. In fact, what makes them so, is the niche audience they are targeting with the message, product or service. For example, when Picasso invented cubism art and still to this day, it is a genre which is not for everyone. That is completely OK. I would argue this type of breadth and depth and variety to life is what makes it all the more interesting.
But, it feels scary at the same time. Even as I write this, I realize that I have an idea which is different. It is unique and it is not for everyone. Some people will not get it and others will say, ‘it is not for me’. I need to become comfortable with that reaction. Just as we are each unique individuals and our personalities are not compatible with everyone else, the work we want to do won’t appeal broadly, all the time.
I am going to give credit for this breakthrough in my way of thinking to Christopher Lochhead. According to his bio, Christopher Lochhead (@lochhead) is a former entrepreneur, retired Silicon Valley three-time public company CMO, category designer, host of the Legends and Losers podcast, and co-author of Play Bigger: How Pirates, Dreamers, and Innovators Create and Dominate Markets. I heard him speak on the podcast, Art of Charm, episode #681.
First, he validated my thoughts on the distasteful practise of comparison, the who is better thinking that pervades the world today. Which is fine and well, but what to do instead? His answer was to be different. Think different. Act different.
He talked about how we are heavily influenced by the thoughts of others. So much so, we rarely have our own original ideas. He went on to say, “Once I understand that I can have my own thoughts, a demarcation point in thinking creates a demarcation point in language, which often leads to a demarcation point in action.”
Out of that podcast, I challenged myself. What is different about the wellness industry that I want to contribute? Long ago, before I even really understood there was a huge wellness industry, I felt there was power in creativity. There was something in the daily practice of creativity in all its forms, which makes people happier. I knew this from my personal experience and with a survey of 125 others, my assumption was confirmed. But what to do with that? The topic was so broad and could be interpreted in so many different ways, where would I even begin?
My husband has long been a huge fan of me hosting a creative women’s retreat. That encouragement helped me niche the idea down a bit more, but I still needed to be more specific. I went out to survey monkey again, trying to see what women thought ‘an epic creative retreat‘ would be. Thank-you from the bottom of my heart for the 77 responses, so far. What became clear, early on, was the focus towards certain self-care wellness activities. Another great data point, which ultimately lead me to a breakthrough.
I have invented a new word and effectively created a category in the wellness industry. Welcome to – crea.spa.treat. It means, a daily creative practice, with spa-like self-care in a retreat setting. I will create content, structure and support for a variety of experiences, both online and IRL, (in real life).
- Attending IRL retreats getting the highest level of interpersonal interactions.
- Or attend an online retreat, self-paced, with access to a community of others, sharing as they feel comfortable to do so.
- Or host local IRL mini events.
- Or create her own personal experience at home, the ultimate in customization.
If you are interested in this kind of thing, let me know what you think of this idea! After a year away from my career, I finally know what I am about and what I am working towards. It feels great! I fully accept this will not be for everyone, but I have received positive responses from like-minded women, which is all I can hope for.
#creaspatreat – Join me in this creative journey. I am on a mission to start a global movement, focusing on the importance of creativity in our daily lives. Together, let us see where we can take this. I look forward to hearing from you! Please share your thoughts. Feel free to send an email to: Christine@dailycreatives.com
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