Want to be more creative? Invent a musical instrument.

Oh, you’re an __(occupation goes here)__, not a musical instrument inventor.  That’s, my point.

Leonardo da Vinci wasn’t a musical instrument inventor either, until he had the idea for this viola organist recently built by Polish pianist Slawomir Zubrzycki.  Leonardo is generally regarded as one of the great minds of any era.  He had diverse creative pursuits.  Best known as a great painter, he was also a sculptor, architect, musician, mathematician, engineer, anatomist, geologist, cartographer, botanist, inventor and writer.

So, did his success in so many fields come from his keen mind or did is keen mind come from his activity in many fields?  Hmm.

How diverse are your creative pursuits?  I might suggest that if you want to be really good at your job, do something else. People with diverse creative activities bring fresher thinking to their primary party because they go to lots of parties.

I suggest you contemplate your next creative field while listening to Zubrzycki playing da Vinci’s wonderfully melodic viola organist.

© 2013 Tom Monahan

Tom Monahan is Head Creative Thinking Coach at Before & After, a company specializing in training business people to think more creatively and facilitating brainstorming sessions.  B&A works with major marketers and ad agencies worldwide, including Target, Virgin Atlantic, Budweiser and Unilever, among others. Previously Tom was a founder and ECD at Leonard/Monahan, a major incubator for advertising creative talent. Tom has published The Do-it-yourself Lobotomy for John Wiley & Sons, under the Adweek imprint, he was advertising columnist for Communication Arts for over a decade and was written up in The Wall Street Journal’s long-running “creative leaders” series.