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Behind the poster: “Choose your wants over your fears…”

Entrepreneurship is fundamentally about creativity and optimism. Looking for the opportunities, the potential, the possibilities… and then taking action to make them a reality.

That’s why I love this quote from entrepreneur and life coach Brooke Castillo:

Available in the shop

Brooke’s coaching, and her entire business, is based around consciously creating the results you want in your life. Looking past fear and imagining a future that you have designed for yourself, and for your clients.

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How to prevent inspiration ‘blindness’

When was the last time you really looked at the art on your walls? Read that framed quote? Actually seen your desktop background?

Our brains are wired for novelty, to notice whatever is new in an environment. In order to do this efficiently, with minimal use of resources, our brains quickly learn to ‘tune out’ the constants – reducing the things that don’t change into the equivalent of wallpaper.

This means that the motivational quote you have on the shelf, the inspiring photo, even the custom-painted portrait of your dog, quickly fade into the background. We become ‘blind’ to them, and their initial impact wanes. In fact, the only people who can really appreciate them are those who rarely enter our work space – new customers, colleagues in other departments, etc. Because they’re not habituated to your objects, they get the benefit of really seeing them (as well as the opportunity to interpret what your objects say about you).

Fortunately, there are several solutions to this ‘blindness’:

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What your objects say about you

The objects we choose to surround ourselves with, to decorate our spaces with, act as a reflection of who we are.

Whether we like it not, our clients, our teams, and even our own unconscious selves, are scanning them for meaning.

That first dollar bill from a paying customer. A festival wrist band. A photo of the first company office. Pictures of family.

“people’s possessions tell us even more about their personalities than face-to-face meetings”
– Sam Gosling, PhD and author of Snoop: What your stuff says about you

We keep these objects because they generally serve two functions:

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The science behind using art to reduce stress and increase creativity

Detail from a work in progress

“As ten-thousand studies have shown, when you are chronically stressed, you’re less able to be at your best. Particularly when you’re talking about a knowledge economy which really places a high premium on creativity.

Dr. Rick Hanson, Ph.D.

Stress reduction is a huge part of Health and Safety research and legislation, plays a significant role in management training and literature, and even has an economic impact. Consider these findings from both the EU and the US:

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Auditing your Artwork

How does the art reflect your goals?

The artwork in your workspace needs to be challenged and changed on a regular basis.

Too often we add art to our environment and then forget about it. After a few weeks or months, it starts to blend into the wallpaper, virtually invisible.

Where this can be problematic is that the artwork is still functioning in the space – it is still sending messages to you, your team, customers, and clients who visit the space.

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