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Best Books for Career Development: Edition 1

Updated: Mar 23, 2023

"Creative Confidence” by Tom Kelley and David Kelley

"Creative Confidence" is a mind-broadening book that has impacted the way I work, brainstorm, plan, and communicate.

This book expanded my definition and understanding of the word “creativity.” I, like many people, thought of creativity as a trait that you either have or you don’t have. Something that you are or are not born with. I thought being creative simply meant you were artistic and right-brained.

Limiting creativity to this narrow definition is doing ourselves a disservice. Whether you’re an artist, teacher, stay-at-home parent, accountant, or doctor - everyone possesses the ability to be creative in their lives.

Creativity is much border than art or innovation. This book defines creativity as “using your imagination to create something new in the world. Creativity comes into play whenever you have the opportunity to generate new ideas, solutions, or approaches.”

Additionally, authors and brothers Tom and David Kelley explained that “there’s no word in the Tibetan language for ‘creativity’ or ‘being creative.’ The closest translation is ‘natural.’ In other words, if you want to be more creative, you just have to be more natural.”

This concept stopped me in my tracks. As we grow and age, it has been proven that our creativity often decreases. But every child is naturally born creative. You can see it in the way children play. And to be creative is to be more in touch with the wild and imaginative ways of thinking we were born with - before society projected its expectations upon us.

This book is full of insight that can be applicable to anyone in any career who is interested in new ways of thinking, growing, and developing.

Below are some of my favorite ideas and concepts from this insightful and inspirational book.

  • Instead of being paralyzed by the prospect of failure, see every experience as something you can learn from.

  • If you want more success, you have to be able to shrug off more failure.

  • Creative confidence is a way of seeing your potential and your place in the world more clearly, unclouded by anxiety and doubt.

  • Growth mindset: the deep-seated belief that your true potential is still unknown.

  • You are not limited to only what you have been able to do before.

  • With Creative Confidence comes the desire to proactively guide the course of your life, or your organization, rather than be carried along the prevailing winds.

  • Like a muscle, your creative abilities will grow and strengthen with practice. Continuing to exercise them will keep them in shape.

  • Wherever you fall on the artistic skill curve, half the battle is to resist judging yourself.

  • Language is the crystallization of thought.

  • Most people are vastly more creative and capable than they know. Normalcy is overrated. If you tap into your natural creativity, you have a chance to be extraordinary.

  • Approach the world with a sense of childlike wonder, and see what new ideas you can identify and explore.

I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in gaining confidence in your creativity, dreams, ideas, and goals.

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