The Creative Method and Systems Debut

Download a PDF of The Creative Method and Systems.

Sign up for the Creative Method and Systems workshop on May 9th in Toronto

After five years of promising myself I would write a book on creativity, I finally got most of my ideas together in one package. I presented this package on April 28th, 2009, at FITC Toronto (an eclectic innovation, design, and technology conference). Cramming half a decade of thinking into a one hour presentation is challenging, but the net result is this distillation of The Creative Method and Systems. It has garnered some attention on, becoming the Top Presentation of the Day in less than 24 hours after posting. I know this was due, in part, by some wonderful Twitter followers who kept broadcasting and relinking to the slideshow. Thank you very much for the attention. This was also due to a timely interview in BlogTO about creativity at FITC by Corina. Thank you to her as well.

So what’s next? An audio addition to the SlideShare presentation is coming in the next few weeks. I’m also creating a Ning community to challenge, use, and discuss these ideas. If you are interested, you can sign up here. But please note that there is very limited space to start and that you may be placed on a waiting list.

There will be a lot more, as this is just the beginning of The Creative Method and Systems. It will continue to grow and evolve as I work toward improving the sections that need more attention, and reacting to comments and suggestions.

If you are interested in inviting me to speak at your school, institution, or agency, feel free to contact me at Jason.Theodor[at] Please put CREATIVE METHOD in the subject.

Thanks again to everyone who has downloaded, watched, favourited, re-tweeted, and linked to The Creative Method and Systems.

1st Grader Suspected of Distributing Bio-Hazardous Material

Imagine for a moment that you are a father. Now imagine that your 6 year old excitedly shows you a plastic tube that was given to her by a schoolyard friend. Now imagine examining the tube closely, which is filled with a textured, viscous beige-and-green goop, and seeing a medical waste warning label. Wouldn’t you be a little bit anxious at this point? Wouldn’t you immediately put it in a Ziploc bag, wash your hands, wash and quarantine your daughter, take pictures of the offending vial, and contact the principal of the school immediately to find out the source? Wouldn’t you also call Public Health to make sure you weren’t going to become the epicenter of the next SARS-like outbreak?

I would. But I wasn’t that father.

Biohazard Detail

Let’s imagine a separate scenario: Let’s say that over 2 years ago you worked at an ad agency that had a drug company client. Let’s say that the client sometimes had sample kits to give away to doctors. One of those kits ended up in your hands because it was extra, because it was free, and because it came with a cool bag. In this kit were a few ‘realistic’ looking items. One of them happened to be a plastic vial for disposing of insulin needles. You thought it would be cute to put them with the other items in your kid’s Fisher-Price doctor bag and forgot about it. For 2 years.

Then, one Friday on your commute home you received a strange text message from your wife. Your daughter had been caught with a vial of bio-hazardous material. Under interrogation, she told the principal that she got it from… you!

Having absolutely no memory of this vial from 2 years ago, you try desperately to figure out how your child would be in possession of bio-hazardous material. You gave blood a few months ago, but you weren’t allowed to take any of the vials home. You were in the hospital for a day last year, was it from then? Your wife was a practicing doula for a while, was it from her birthing kit? None of these options made any sense.

On your walk home, you pick up your daughter from a play date at a friend’s. You ask her if she got in trouble for bringing anything to school that day. She frowns and doesn’t want to talk about it. You press her gently. Finally she says, “It was YOUR thing! It was from YOU!”

“I know, I know,” you say. “It was entirely my fault. But it scared a few people.” Pausing, you finally ask, “What was in that thing anyway?”

“Cotton balls and hand soap, of course,” is her matter-of-fact reply.

“Of course,” you say, most relieved. Then you go home and write a long letter of explanation to the principal of the school so that everyone can relax for the weekend without visions of viral contamination.

Yup. I was that father.


More LifeFocus is Working

I just spent a few days ‘up north’ at my wife’s grandparents’ cottage. The kids love it up there, as do I. But there is no internet. I know this is not important to normal folk, but when you’re in the midst of posting about your LifeFocus cards it can be a bit rough. Here is Friday, Saturday, and Sunday and a wee bit of commentary.

LifeFocus System Card 002LifeFocus System Card 003LifeFocus System Card 004

There something extra motivating about posting the results of these cards. I am happy with my vitamin intake, even this early on in the process. It has taken me years and years trying to make sure I get proper nutrition in the morning, but taking vitamins never seemed to stick. Since I’ve been on medication for my sore back (from the car accident in Dec), it has turned into more of a routine. Cutting back on pain-killers and keeping on with multi-vitamins works fine for me. I just need to eat more fruit.

I also like the short diary-like sentences that remind me of the day. It’s like a Twitter journal. The accordion style in my wallet worked well for keeping track of how many glasses of water I drank, but I enjoyed creating a digital version at the end of the day much more.

This week I will explain some of my 10 choices, and hopefully create an editable PDF version for people to test along with me.