From the early days of school into our professional pursuits, we all face pressure to get things done by a deadline and deliver results that achieve the desired outcome.
How does that pressure affect our ability to be creative though? Can you have a truly inspired idea on demand?
Phil Cooke is an American writer, television producer and media consultant who’s had a long career studying the craft of creativity and learning how to deliver stand-out ideas under pressure.
Speaking to Hope 103.2’s UNDISTRACTED podcast Phil said, “creativity is simply solving a problem”.
“Creativity is simply solving a problem,” – Hollywood producer Phil Cooke
“You don’t have to be a professional creative person: you don’t have to be a writer, or a designer or a media professional. [We all] need to be more creative in our life.”
In his new book Ideas on a Deadline, Phil writes for those of us who, no matter our industry, have to offer breakthrough solutions as requested – not necessarily when we feel inspired.
“I really want to break the myth [that] you have to wait for inspiration,” Phil said.
“There’s something intentional for us to do, we can’t wait for that moment or those ideas.
“The ‘aha moment’ happens, but only after a lot of preparation and research. A lot of thinking about it in your mind [where] connections suddenly are made.”
“The ‘aha moment’ happens, but only after a lot of preparation and research,” – Hollywood producer Phil Cooke
Deadlines can make us panic, but “my feeling is that a deadline provides the roadmap”, Phil said.
“I tend to be on the lazy side, and I don’t really kick into gear until I see the deadline out there.
“I think a lot of people suffer from writer’s block, and it’s because they start the project too soon.”
In the full UNDISTRACTED conversation, Phil talks about how to stir ideas in a finite window, remain open-minded as you age and why limitations are helpful in life.
Listen now via the player above, or find UNDISTRACTED with Laura Bennett wherever you get your podcasts.
Phil Cooke’s Ideas on a Deadline: How to Be Creative When the Clock is Ticking is out now.