Why visioning is so hard

With nothing but clear blue sky overhead, creative work like visioning can at first, seem so enticing. There’s absolutely nothing standing between you and your wildest ideas.

Why then, does a blank page generate so much anxiety? It’s as if the brain locks itself behind a bullet-proof shell. Nothing gets in and nothing gets out.

The solution seems counterintuitive. We need constraints, boundaries, parameters. When we contain our thoughts to meeting a certain need, suddenly the ideas start to flow. Because now you have a challenge. A problem to solve. The old expression that necessity is the mother of invention has never been more apt than when it comes to creative work.

For example, instead of “…today I need to write a blog post”, you might say “today I need to write a blog post to appeal to a reader with X problem.”

“For my design to work, it must be this long, this high and have XYZ characteristics.”

“I will know when I have achieved my vision because my life will look like…”

So next time you’re struggling to get your ideas on the page, start by generating some criteria. Some boundaries for your work.

Right brain, left brain

Cost per click, search rankings, impressions, click through rates, conversion rates and relevance scores.

All will tell you how well you are performing, how likely a customer is to buy from your, where your efforts are getting derailed. Every action is measurable, every connection has a value that can be expressed in dollars and cents.

Our left brains love all this data - to be able to comb through it, analyze it and draw evidence-based conclusions. we all want to be able to prove it, to back up our findings, to draw logical conclusions and inform the next big push.

We live in a world where our left brains have been allowed not only to flourish but to dominate unfettered.

What then, has become of that other hemisphere? What has happened to our intuition, our connection to a deeper knowing? Intuition in business is a sticky subject. Yet, as we move towards automation, as AI becomes more adept and more reliable, cultivating our left brains - our centres for creative thought and emotional connection - could be where our competitive advantage will lie.