By Australian Business Limited and Australian Commonwealth ITR Department

Adapted by Dean Prebble and Prof. Howard Frederick, Ten3 NZ Ltd.


  1. Creativity takes time and silent space.  Each creative talent needs to stake out some quiet time regularly. You can schedule time daily or a couple of days a week. This needs to be an appointment and commitment you keep with yourself.

  2. There are cycles of creativity.  Just as there are seasons in a year and cycles in preparing, planting, nurturing, waiting and harvesting there are creative cycles. We are not always in the harvesting phase. We do go through the dormant cycles of winter that feel as though nothing is happening.  We complete the cycle and move into the planting and harvesting phases.

Yin-Yang of Entrepreneurial Creativity

  1. Select mentors, friends and dream partners wisely.  "Don't expect anyone to be happy for your success or big dreams. If you have a loved one and a friend or two who are happy for you, consider yourself lucky."  Other people can stop or delay your project or idea before you even act on it. So select your creative team carefully.  Remain friends with lots of people but when it comes to working creatively, choose like minds and train them to be honest and unconditionally constructive.

  2. Commit to yourself.  Many people feel guilty when they take the time to engage in their projects. It may mean leaving something undone, not over committing and saying no.  In a study of women and creativity the biggest fear was fear of lost or weakened relationships.  People still need to be connected. This may mean speaking with friends, lovers and children about staying connected and nurtured during this process.


Be Different and Make a Difference!


  1. Set strong boundaries.  "I say no to many things, so that I may say 'Yes!' to what gives me life." We need strong boundaries so that we have energy and time for our creations.

  2.  Work from your strengths.  If you were to spend 80% of your effort to become good at a weakness you might improve that area 20%. But if you were to spend that same 80% of your effort to improve an area of strength, you may improve your strengths 100-400% or more!

  3. Fear is a companion of creativity.  Make friends with fear.  Unless you have a high risk, thrill seeking personality you will experience fear when you venture out into unfamiliar territory. It's OK to pause, look at it, slow down for a moment.  However, do NOT let it stop you!  Feel the fear and continue!  The only way to lessen fear is to do the things we are most afraid of.  We are always in a higher state of emotional arousal when we try something new. Expect fear, redefine fear as performance energy and move on.


Failure as a Stepping Stone to Success

  1. Stop criticising yourself.  We can defeat ourselves before we start by constantly feeling we come up short.  When you try something new always stay positive about your performance. Yes, you can polish it and improve, but you don't have to make yourself 'wrong' to make something better.

  2. Get over perfectionism.  When you have to do something perfectly, you will rarely try something new because you can't do it perfectly the first few times. Yes do great work, but don't hold onto it until it's perfect.  By the time it's perfect, it'll probably be outdated anyway.

  3. Play, have fun, feel joyful, get in the energy flow.  Creativity is about play, fun and flow. When you lose track of time and have boundless energy, doing the things you love, you know you've found your highest creative expression.