We were invited to Manchester Central to host a special workshop at the the city's first event dedicated to Mindful Living.
beanddofounder Mick Timpson lead a few creative flow exercises (pictured below), designed to help participants nurture and engage with their own flow experience and simply let-go.
Mick led three drawing-based exercises and and while they are great fun to do, there is a serious intent behind them, in that they replicate to a degree how one can work with intention but without interference or expectation. In other words, switch on and utilise our beanddo algorithm:
happiness = being + doing - interference
Mick uses these techniques when he is teaching creative thinking and drawing at the Manchester School of Art. The purpose creates the conditions for flow to occur while minimising one's inner critic, allowing you to let go and empower intuition. Often we might have involuntary flow experiences when we doing something we enjoy and are completely wrapped up in. However, with modern meditation we can learn to voluntary switch on flow whenever we need to and make everything we do a happy creative moment, because the experience of flow is identical to the meditation experience.
Here is Mick talking about flow and meditation:
There is a serious side to this approach. It's most likely you were never taught at school or trained at work how to open up to your insight and intuition and in turn, how to apply that purposefully to where you are and what you're doing. The worry is that although these creative mindsets are now required more than ever, education policy at the moment is working in the other direction - this is a worry for the continued growth of UK businesses and also for our wellbeing, because we know creativity and happiness allied with purpose are pretty much interconnected.
The World Economic Forum has concluded that within two years, the top three business skills required in the 21st century will be:
1. Complex problem solving
2. Critical thinking
You may ask, how does doing a fun drawing exercise help nurture these key skills? Well, all three of them are innate human capabilities; it's what we are good at given the chance and the right conditions.