‘Think out of the box’ has become a cliche among many who want to be creative. But let’s think for a moment, from where and how does this ‘box’ come?
A child doesn’t have this 'box'. And that is why his or her imagination knows no bounds.
What happens to the grownups? As we experience, learn and grow, we get conditioned to think in a pattern. It happens mostly subconsciously. Because of this comes the tendency to react rather than respond. Reaction is a result of conditioned reflex, while response is a more conscious decision. For some it is also a shield against the anxiety of uncertainty. That’s why many are hesitant (or rather incapable) to explore beyond their conditioned thought process. And this is the ‘box’.
Knowledge (acquired through schooling or experiences) should usually be of help in taking informed decisions. But to think that all the decisions can be made only based on knowledge or experiences is going to the another extreme. As the saying goes “Known is a drop and unknown is an ocean”. Beyond our limited ideas, there are always new possibilities. There are different perspectives and sometimes unexplored scenarios.
We need to free our imagination from the clutches of memories. Only then at perception level we become objective, only then we truly can appreciate any experience without contamination.
So let’s our knowledge not interfere in perception. Let’s ask “why” and “why not” little more frequently. Let’s open the doors of new possibilities. We may not be able to get rid of the box, but let’s be aware that we have a box to deal with.
Dr. Vivek Modi
Success Coach and Corporate Trainer