(Picture: Segagman via Creative Commons)
Steve Jobs and I. We never met, I never even interacted with him. He never consulted me on his creative work – the imac, ipad, ipod and iphone.
And we’re lucky he didn’t. Jobs imagination and vision transformed electronics, and in many ways shaped a generation. He was someone who thought differently. He went places no one had gone or even wanted to go, and began a revolution. And he once quoted the statement below as a maxim for both his and Apple’s work:
“I skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been.” – Wayne Gretzky
I’m always surprised when creative people ask their audience for inspiration. I have heard stories and seen examples of successful published authors asking both publishers and their own audience questions like “What subjects are selling well?”, “What do you want to hear about?”, “What’s popular now?”.
The reason I’m surprised is that it is, in fact, not creative in any way.There’s no innovation there. No imagination.
And let’s face it, the motive behind it is always success and achievement. Never being true to your passion or divine identity.
Now the creative impulse is one we all share. It’s part of our divine identity. Every single major advancement in history, came from the creative side of our identity. Explorers imagining new journeys, beyond where others had gone before. Scientists imagining new combinations of chemicals, to form medicines. Others coming up with theories which changed history. And people like Steve Jobs with the iphone, ipad and ipod.
All from the creative side. All people brave enough to go where others hadn’t been before.
You see, to be a creative is to be an explorer. To be courageous, to go places others haven’t been before – and take others with you.
This is what I’m interested in.
When I create, I’m not interested in what’s popular. I’m interested in what God is speaking to me about right now. (you can tweet that here)
If that happens to be popular now, so be it. But what’s really important is what’s stirring up inside my soul. What my heart is speaking to me about. As a writer and a leader I want to take others forward. I’m not only interested in what’s happening now, I’m interested in taking others forward. In using my gifts, my talents to serve others and move them forward, help them grow.
That, after all, is what gifts are given for. To help others on their journey. To be poured out for the good of the world.
And to take people forward involves taking risks. Because to take others into a new place, means having to be creative. And as we’ve seen, creativity is all about bravery.
Can you imagine if Steve Jobs had waited to find out if all the Apple customers like me wanted a unique, new form of MP3 player before inventing the ipod? Or if he consulted customers about tablets before the ipad?
He didn’t, is the answer. No one was sure either of those creations would take off. There was little or no market research beforehand.
Steve Jobs took the lead. He was bold and courageous. And he created markets which barely existed, and revolutionised others which did.Because he didn’t wait for approval, or fear rejection. He didn’t follow the so-called ‘rules’.
Steven King didn’t survey readers for thoughts on what should go in his first book. He simply wrote it down and shared it with the world.
He created. He was bold.
We should never be afraid to create. Let’s not wait for approval or to see whether people will want what we create, or whether we can guarantee success.Truth is, you can never guarantee success. And at some point, you will be rejected. You will fail.
Steve Jobs failed. He was sacked by his own company in the mid-1980’s. But like any good failure, it was only the catalyst for a new beginning. And, in fact, he said himself that it freed him to be more creative again, to imagine a new tomorrow – and began the path which led him back to Apple, and so to the imac, ipod, iphone and ipad.
No matter what happens, may we never be afraid to take a step of faith. Never be too fearful to imagine a new tomorrow.
As Steve Jobs himself says in the ‘Think Different’ advert below:
“The people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones who do”
So watch the video below and listen to the words. Let yourself be inspired.
And then follow in the footsteps of God, the divine creative.
Go and create.
Do you agree or disagree with me? Why?
Do you wait for permission before creating?
Are you willing to go places no one has gone before?
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