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Get Unblocked - 33rd Degree Conference

Get Unblocked - 33rd Degree Conference



As a developer and a creative, you need ways to work better so that you can create more, but what do you do when you hit a seemingly insurmountable mental wall? You need to get unblocked: to bust ...

As a developer and a creative, you need ways to work better so that you can create more, but what do you do when you hit a seemingly insurmountable mental wall? You need to get unblocked: to bust through that barrier to allow creativity to flow. Beware: this presentation challenges the standard norms around concentration, focus, productivity, and may change how you work…for the better.



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Get Unblocked - 33rd Degree Conference Get Unblocked - 33rd Degree Conference Presentation Transcript

  • @denisejacobs @33rdDegreeConf #33rdDegree #getunblocked
  • Blocked?
  • “The entire industry is broken.” - Ted Neward, Managers are from Mars, Developers are from Venus
  • Managers
  • Office-bound http://www.flickr.com/photos/stewf/393637161/
  • Time pressures http://www.flickr.com/photos/indraw/4857101224/
  • Demanding clients http://www.flickr.com/photos/clairity/154640125/
  • Bureaucracy http://www.flickr.com/photos/opensourceway/4749431435/
  • Oppressed http://www.flickr.com/photos/johannahobbs/2412291551/
  • Instead of this http://www.flickr.com/photos/anieto2k/8156999698/
  • You run into road blocks http://www.flickr.com/photos/99301367@N00/8497106802/
  • And you run completely http://royhoes.deviantart.com/art/Out-of-Inspiration-85588391
  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/myfear/289257055/ When in the creative flow
  • We are alchemists http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Faust_image_19thcentury.jpg
  • It feels like http://www.flickr.com/photos/torley/2761300969/
  • “Creativity is magical, but it is not magic.” - Dr. Charles Limb, Your Brain on Improvisation TED talk
  • We’re powerful creators
  • “Developers are like the Jedi: we’re all tapped into The Force.” - Ted Neward, Managers are from Mars, Developers are from Venus
  • Instead of using it fully http://www.flickr.com/photos/h-k-d/3310336516/
  • We give our power away https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/6D-O5ECr5EUow5jrck2A2A
  • Instead of power, we feel… https://www.flickr.com/photos/70938871@N05/8230432077
  • Building Blocks
  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/barretthall/3036598475/ &http://www.flickr.com/photos/carbonnyc/3135103537/ It starts early
  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/lorenjavier/7324305636/ Three stories
  • Age 6
  • Father Photo: Deloria Jacobs
  • Photos: Deloria Jacobs Mother & Sister
  • Me? More of a graphic artist Photo: Deloria Jacobs
  • Compared myself http://www.flickr.com/photos/kharied/3315558702/
  • ( I have to be like them to be creative. )
  • Age 10
  • Photo: Deloria Jacobs Oldest friend in the world
  • ( “Who do you think you are?” )
  • https://www.flickr.com/photos/mcsdwarken/7490078656 “I should tone it down”
  • Age 24
  • I graduated! Yay! Photo: Deloria Jacobs
  • Maybe be a writer?
  • “Do you know how hard it is to get published?” - My father
  • My father was bad-ass Photo: Deloria Jacobs
  • “I have to be superlative”
  • I binge-created for years
  • But never felt deserving
  • Always a bit in the closet http://www.flickr.com/photos/kenzzz_14/7031233649/
  • After writing this…
  • I had an epiphany http://www.flickr.com/photos/44085287@N05/4055814772/
  • We ALL hold the power http://www.flickr.com/photos/assbach/267598910/
  • For Empowered http://www.flickr.com/photos/designandtechnologydepartment/4771136128/
  • Internalized critical voices http://www.flickr.com/photos/mikeapalooza/553545517/
  • Paralyze and imprison us http://www.flickr.com/photos/b3ni/2990601183/
  • We give so much away
  • = Blocks http://www.flickr.com/photos/mr_g_travels/860951845/
  • Lies that we tell ourselves
  • Adds up; Shuts us down
  • Instead of creativity
  • Destructivity http://www.flickr.com/photos/kevygee/3265941065/
  • How do we… http://www.flickr.com/photos/opensourceway/5445602998/
  • Get Unblocked? http://www.flickr.com/photos/rvm_71/5011353192/
  • “You can’t force yourself to get into (creative) flow, but you can set the conditions for it.” - Ted Neward, “Managers are from Mars, Developers are from Venus”
  • The Process
  • Recognize & Banish
  • Physical evidence of fear http://www.flickr.com/photos/grumpyfeline/4626401443/
  • Internalized criticisms + fears https://www.flickr.com/photos/remoto/5313967682
  • Evil voices in your head http://www.flickr.com/photos/epsos/4887528060/
  • “If your demons are such that they fill the room the instant you contemplate creating, your studio will be too dangerous a place to enter.” - Eric Maisel, author of Fearless Creating
  • You can’t outrun them http://www.flickr.com/photos/wester/504925076/
  • Face and ID your Inner Critic http://www.flickr.com/photos/lambdachialpha/203904103/
  • Impostor Syndrome
  • Impostor Syndrome Paradox http://www.flickr.com/photos/x1brett/2279939232/
  • Comparisons http://www.flickr.com/photos/automania/126698126/
  • Perfectionism http://www.flickr.com/photos/diepuppenstubensammlerin/7648792510/
  • “Perfectionism is self-abuse of the highest order.” ― Anne Wilson Schaef
  • Focus on the finished product… https://www.flickr.com/photos/phatcontroller/3667889959/
  • Instead of the process http://www.flickr.com/photos/spyndle/474122586/
  • The real problem http://cuttingthecheese.files.wordpress.com/2012/06/26810560251953842_ede18tng_f.jpg
  • “The Best” vs “The most” https://www.flickr.com/photos/villify/10871945326
  • Procrastination http://www.flickr.com/photos/irrezolut/2311904560/
  • Feed each other
  • Fear of failure http://www.flickr.com/photos/laughingsquid/2717325940/
  • F.E.A.R. = http://cdnpix.com/show/imgs/7a361666e107cd36656d5a66ea2e4e80.jpg
  • Or, the alternative
  • “Fear is not real. It is a product of the thoughts you create. Do not misunderstand me. Danger is very real. But fear is a choice.” - character of Cypher Raige (played by Will Smith), After Earth
  • Become a Fear Alchemist http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Joseph_Wright_of_Derby_The_Alchemist.jpg
  • “The goal is to manage anxiety so that our energies are used for the productive and satisfying art of creating…
  • …rather than the destructive and debilitating art of self-torture.” - Clare Warmke, Idea Revolution
  • Banish the Inner Critic http://www.flickr.com/photos/mythoto/3822942678/
  • Comparisons aren’t real http://www.flickr.com/photos/suvodeb/2559017400/
  • “You alone are enough. You have nothing to prove to anybody.” ― Dr. Maya Angelou
  • Reframe failure http://www.flickr.com/photos/laughingsquid/2717326642/
  • And mistakes https://www.flickr.com/photos/stevendepolo/4498817330/
  • “Failure is only the opportunity to begin again more intelligently.” - Henry Ford
  • Be bad/make it ugly https://www.flickr.com/photos/kpwerker/6051104684
  • “If you want a creative life, do what you can’t and experience the beauty of the mistakes that you make.” - Marcel Wanders, Designer and “Professional Amateur” (marcelwanders.com)
  • Take it a step further Photo: Denise Jacobs
  • Change your body, change your mind http://www.flickr.com/photos/thirteenthnile/4546397775/
  • “Our bodies change our minds, our minds change our behavior, and our behavior changes our outcomes.” - Amy Cuddy, Your Body Language Shapes Who You Are TED talk
  • Cop a Power Pose
  • Adjust & Replace
  • “It’s all preparation. The magic happens at the stove.” - Daniel Steinberg, Crazy and Focused
  • Laying the foundation Photo: Denise Jacobs
  • Train Your Brain http://www.flickr.com/photos/tiarescott/3211540197/
  • Left v. Right brain? http://browse.deviantart.com/?q=left%20brain%20right%20brain&order=9&offset=48#/d10qlpq
  • Left hemisphere http://www.flickr.com/photos/smittenkittenoriginals/4451172538/
  • Right hemisphere http://www.flickr.com/photos/lorelei-ranveig/2294885580/
  • A balanced brain http://www.flickr.com/photos/47691521@N07/4639590640/
  • Our brains produce…? http://www.flickr.com/photos/cblue98/7254347346/
  • Know your Brainwaves
  • Get your Alpha on
  • 5 Easy ways access to Alpha http://uniteunderfreedom.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/09/Brain-waves.jpg
  • (1) Breathe to refocus http://www.flickr.com/photos/eldave/3065425105/
  • (2) Lay down; be prone http://www.flickr.com/photos/snazzy54/4581347651/
  • (3) Daydream/Space out http://www.flickr.com/photos/fuzzylittlemanpeach/4633972431/
  • (4) Takes a shower http://www.flickr.com/photos/stevendepolo/3761878381/
  • (5) Get physical http://www.flickr.com/photos/miguel77/2728104156/
  • “When your brain is supposedly doing nothing, it’s really doing a tremendous amount.” – Marcus Raichle, Neurologist
  • Manage time http://www.flickr.com/photos/paolocampioni/2168286027/
  • To DON’T https://www.flickr.com/photos/superamit/1043379069
  • Say NO to Distractions http://www.flickr.com/photos/gideon/6582069/
  • Instill the Headphones Rule https://www.flickr.com/photos/thomashawk/9824922293
  • RescueTime.com
  • HeyFocus.com
  • Added bonus
  • Tools RescueTime.com GetConcentrating.com HeyFocus.com Browser Extensions Firefox: LeechBlock Idderall Google Chrome: Strict Workflow StayFocusd Aids for digital blocking
  • Single-task http://www.flickr.com/photos/33498942@N04/6009639079/
  • Pomodoro Technique http://www.flickr.com/photos/lucamascaro/4975166968/
  • Airplane mode http://www.flickr.com/photos/pieterouwerkerk/699475144/
  • Connect & Play
  • Do It With Others http://www.flickr.com/photos/u-suke/5668302030/
  • Mo’ people, mo’ ideas http://www.flickr.com/photos/seretuaccidente/147686396/
  • Avoid sameness http://www.flickr.com/photos/dahlstroms/3774973833/
  • Diverse environments http://www.flickr.com/photos/shirinwiniger/3680885289/
  • Share ideas http://www.flickr.com/photos/nanpalmero/4278466639/
  • Don’t keep them to yourself http://www.flickr.com/photos/anieto2k/8127201319/
  • Share mistakes http://www.flickr.com/photos/neilt/26322670/
  • Amplify the ideas of others http://www.flickr.com/photos/roland/54381130/
  • Improv http://www.flickr.com/photos/roel1943/5740295789/
  • Plus it http://www.flickr.com/photos/66568868@N00/6032481145/
  • The structure
  • Make your partner look good http://www.flickr.com/photos/31246066@N04/4597640798/
  • Expands, does not contract http://www.flickr.com/photos/opensourceway/5752191246/
  • Power-Push Writing Photo: Anna B. Scott
  • Free & Clear
  • Before http://www.flickr.com/photos/mr_g_travels/860951845/
  • After http://www.flickr.com/photos/visualdoubts/4087935894/
  • The stage is set for Flow http://www.flickr.com/photos/sgeithner/5290115839/
  • Find
  • •  Clarity about & confidence in you want to achieve •  Level of mastery •  Cleared space; materials on hand •  Time carved out; distractions eliminated •  Practice in place The previous steps lead you here:
  • (Re)Gain Creative Confidence http://www.flickr.com/photos/44085287@N05/4055807492/
  • “…the confidence that, when given a difficult problem, we have a methodology that enables us to come up with a solution that nobody has before.” - David Kelley, Founder of Ideo
  • Ideas are on and poppin’! http://www.flickr.com/photos/7730492@N03/4957946157/
  • A transformation happens http://www.flickr.com/photos/opensourceway/5392982007/
  • Reclaim our power http://www.flickr.com/photos/anieto2k/8216666102/
  • By realizing
  • Nudge your comfort zone
  • “Creative minds have always been known to survive any kind of bad training.” - Anna Freud
  • Value yourself and process http://www.flickr.com/photos/pocait/2847866615/
  • Moving forward http://www.flickr.com/photos/opensourceway/6005503875/
  • “Creativity makes day to day experiences more vivid, more enjoyable, more rewarding. When we live creatively, boredom is banished and every moment holds the promise of a fresh discovery.” - Mihali Csikszentmihalyi, Creativity
  • It’s how & why I do what I do Photo: Derek Kearney
  • “The new scarcity: the time, energy, and brainpower of bright, creative people.” -Mary Poppendieck, “Think For Yourself”
  • You’re a precious resource http://www.flickr.com/photos/siutou_amy/2306794554/
  • In order for you to create
  • Need to Get Unblocked http://www.flickr.com/photos/bcymet/3564484236/
  • You are my starfish https://www.flickr.com/photos/bestrated1/3323936783
  • Make better things AND http://www.flickr.com/photos/opensourceway/5319988695/
  • I hope that you http://www.flickr.com/photos/boojee/2781415869/
  • The End…? http://www.flickr.com/photos/imuttoo/232100469/
  • Thank you http://www.flickr.com/photos/wwworks/4759535970/
  • Four Secrets to Enhancing Creative Productivity www.creativebloq.com/inspiration/four-secrets-enhancing-creative-productivity-9126098 Banishing Your Inner Critic alistapart.com/articles/banishing-your-inner-critic/ Reigniting Your Creative Spark alistapart.com/articles/reigniting-your-creative-spark/ Breaking the Perfectionism-Procrastination Infinite Loop webstandardssherpa.com/reviews/breaking-the-perfectionism-procrastination-infinite-loop/ My articles for further reading
  • DeniseJacobs.com  Sign up on my mailing list here! denise@denisejacobs.com twitter.com/denisejacobs facebook.com/denisejacobsdotcom slideshare.net/denisejacobs Connect with me! Photo used with permission: http://www.flickr.com/photos/aarronwalter/4629078087/