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Creative on Purpose Blog

Insight and Inspiration for Flying Higher in Endeavors that Make a Difference

Creativity in Times of Crisis

Crisis hijacks the healthier impulses we need to leverage when things go sideways.

"What am I to do when [INSERT CURRENT CRISIS HERE]?!"

Let's start by contextualizing the situation at hand. Yes, the current crisis is new and now, but novelty and proximity don't have to be exaggerated to amplify our anxiety.

Additionally, and this may not be the best time to state the obvious, death will happen for all of us. The time and manner of our death matter less than spending the time we've been granted to live it well.

Here are additional thoughts on weathering the crisis of this moment.

What helps us purposely work through any crisis are basic human instincts like consideration, compassion, and care. These can be replaced by contempt, cruelty, and carelessness during times of trouble.

Creativity is the antidote to caving into an unhealthy response to a crisis.

Creativity is collaborative. It builds trust, encourages...

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The Antidote to Judgement

personal development Mar 09, 2020

Judgment is a belief or a collection of beliefs clung to in order to maintain the status quo.

We want to know where we stand and what's expected of us, for sure. But what we really want to know is where we belong and how we stay there.

But is the status quo really serving us so well that there's no room for improvement?

What happens if we suspend our certainty and judgment? After all, most of what we believe isn't empirically true. It's anecdotal.

What if, instead of certainty and judgment, we practiced a little more curiosity and consideration toward others and ourselves?

Wouldn't that change things?

"Things themselves don't hurt or hinder us. Nor do other people. How we view these things is another matter. It is our attitudes and reactions that give us trouble." - Epictetus

Let's keep stepping into possibility together!

Scott Perry - Difference Maker at Creative on Purpose.

Ready to get out of your own way and get going in endeavors...

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The Virtues of Overwhelm

personal development Mar 02, 2020

We live in a world full of information and distraction. In this world, overwhelm can be a real and debilitating response. Confronted with an abundance of  stimuli and choices, we may well choose to do nothing.

And sometimes, doing nothing can be an entirely appropriate response.

Overwhelm is a fraught subject, for sure!

At the same time…

Overwhelm is a result of an abundance of opportunity. It can be reframed as an invitation to make a decision and own a choice.

Just typing that, I feel tension. How about you?

And yet…

If you aspire to make a difference, that’s the gig.

If you're to level up as a difference maker, you'll have to face the overwhelm and become a decision maker.

And, here's your next chance to exercise your decision making muscle and step into possibility as a change agent.

The thing about choices is they want to be chosen. Making the best decision you can in this moment places us in a new moment with new choices and another decision to make.


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Less Is More

This is an excerpt from my best-selling Amazon title, Endeavor: Cultivate Excellence While Making a Difference.

“To attain knowledge, add things every day. To attain wisdom, remove things every day.” - Lao Tzu

This is the hardest lesson I’ve ever learned. In fact, I relearn it daily. I’m sharing it with you and imploring you to pay attention. 

Less is more.

You are born into a world where more isn’t enough. This impulse is fueling the woes and suffering you wrestle with today.

As you unpack your endeavor and identify who it’s for and what it’s for, think small. Keep it simple. 

You aren’t going to transform the world overnight. Your idea won’t become an immediate change agent. Your actions won’t instantly initiate a movement. 

The cosmos doesn’t owe you a thing. But it does reward thoughtful, ethical, and determined effort. 

Be deliberate. You can lean in and leap when what’s...

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The Formula for Making a Difference

personal development Feb 24, 2020

Here's my current working model for a formula for making a difference:

Creativity + Character = Change for the Better

Creativity - the act of bending, breaking, or otherwise bringing something new into the world.

Here's how I define it in the Creative on Purpose Handbook, "Creativity is the simple act of making change happen. Our creative impulse is what gets you from where we are to where you want to be."

Character - a combination of your virtue and values as you live them.

Here's how I define character in Character Loans, "Character is who you really are and reputation is who other people think you are. Character and reputation don't always align. However, if you consistently show up and act with the intention and integrity you talk about, your character can strongly influence your reputation." (See also, Character Is Fate)

Change for the Better - An iteration or transformation that improves the prospects and prosperity for all.

Change for...

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How to Decide

personal development Feb 17, 2020

What's your attitude and process toward decision-making?

Actually, making the case to be a decision-maker might be the place to start.

You don't have to decide, of course. But if you're going to make change happen or make progress in your endeavor, you must become a decision-maker.

And for many of us, embracing the mindset and posture of a decision-maker can be terrifying.

Why is that?

I think part of it is our default programming as human beings. We love knowing where we stand and what's expected of us. We're comforted by and feel safe with the status quo, aka the way things are and the way we are.

However, if you've already adopted the posture and mindset of a difference-maker, you're already at peace with the idea that the status quo, external and internal, is not enough.

Another dynamic that conspires against our desire to be decision-makers is that we get really hung up with the outcomes...

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Lessons Learned at the Modern Elder Academy

personal development Feb 15, 2020

My wife, Lisa, and I had the privilege of recently attending a session of The Making of a Modern Elder program at Chip Conley's Modern Elder Academy.

Lisa and I arrived full of curiosity and eager to level up in our quest to gain clarity and skill in creating and contributing as modern elders.

Toward this end, the session was expertly led by Jeff Hamaoui and Janis Nakano Spivack and augmented by the contributions of mindfulness and yoga facilitator Teddi Dean Bennett, resident shaman, Saul Kup, and the culinary wizardry of chef Tony Peralta.

But the real magic came from the being a part of our student cohort, AKA the Dancing Howlers. Wisdom, it turns out, is easier to come by and apply when it is pursued with and for fellow travelers.

Here are the top five lessons I learned during our week at the Modern Elder Academy.


Taking stock of your current situation is a necessary and sometimes challenging requirement for stepping into...

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Speed Vs. Velocity

personal development Feb 10, 2020

I often catch myself confusing or conflating speed and velocity. I mistake my going fast for making progress toward an intended target.

Here's the deal.

Speed is the rate at which an object covers distance. It's the distance traveled over a specified amount of time. Speed is ignorant of direction.

On the other hand, velocity is a vector quantity. It's the speed of something moving toward a destination. Velocity is direction-aware.

How fast are you going? Do you have a specific destination in mind? Wouldn't it make sense if you did?

Let's keep flying higher together with intention!

Scott Perry - Difference Maker at Creative on Purpose.

Ready to get out of your own way and get going in endeavors that make a difference? Stepping Into Possibility is a 3-minute read that shares three questions that will get you unstuck and on track doing the work you're meant to do!

If what you just read resonated, please share it with a friend.

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Embracing Uncertainty

personal development Feb 01, 2020

It seems as if the ‘right’ ideas, beliefs, or causes ‘win.’ Those in positions of authority or positioned as successful seem to earn that status through certainty and audacity.

But appearances are deceiving. They don't tell the whole story. And they don't have to define the culture.

What if we championed uncertainty and consideration instead?

The Situation

It's seductive to pretend we're rational agents applying ourselves intelligently and deliberately to endeavors when things work out as we intended. When things don't work out, it's tempting to tell ourselves that it's because events conspired against us or, worse, tell ourselves that we're unworthy, lazy, or stupid.

The truth is, neither  impression is correct. Most of the time, we're on autopilot. The subconscious is making decisions based on instinct and intuition informed by our habits and experience. Things happen as they happen, and the rest is all just storytelling after-the-fact.


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Stillness in Motion

What do you do when you don't know what to do?

Discussing this question with friends led me to contemplate the virtues of both stillness and motion.

What do you do when you don't know what to do?

One perspective is that uncertainty about what to do next is an invitation to adopt a posture of stillness. Resting with the tension of uncertainty is, after all, an exercise in acceptance, acknowledgment, and presence. 

This approach can be effective for staving off the usual reactions to indecision, such as distraction and over-analysis. 

An opposing perspective is that indecisiveness is a call to action. A challenge to put yourself in motion. Doing something coupled with the trust that you'll be able to thrash your way to clarity is often my default attitude.

But I wonder if stillness and motion aren't mutually exclusive?

Some of the greatest moments in history exemplify the capacity to practice stillness in motion. President John Fitzgerald...

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I'd love to share the Stepping Into Possibility guide and two additional resources with you. Where should I send them?