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Diminishing returns vs virtuous returns - the difference between my rational and aesthetic lives

Updated: Jan 4, 2022

Working in the business world, since 2009 by founding my own brand of consulting and a team of associates, and drawing on a mixture of my own research and training in business psychology and an MBA, I am now thinking how much I was ultimately working on from a strongly rational point of view. lens. Even my background in psychology (certified with, a school pioneer of Dynamic Cognitive Skills in Developmental Psychology) was a robust and highly calibrated tool ... but focusing only on rational faculties. It did not cover the developmental dimensions of ego, morality, or aesthetics.

From my MBA in 2001, I carried out a longitudinal research project in organizational design, with a book project in mind on the theme of decentralized and self-organized structures and cultures. I have organized a website with loads of book and article references and direct interviews called Organization5point0.

BUT, the more I searched, the less I felt I knew. The more articles I read, the more references and bibliographies to dig. The proverbial rabbit hole, and less and less confidence in what I had to say. Traveling around the world in 2006, I visited a professor at a New Zealand business school who edited a journal called "Journal for Radical Organizational Design". In his office, he nodded to his large bookshelf and said, "Forget all those books, in the real world it's a lot more complex than the wishful thinking of these mostly academic writers might think."

It was a dawning feeling of diminishing returns that plagued me for so many years.

However, in my creative work, I can safely say that the opposite is true. The more I create, the more creative I become. The more I step into the unknown with my art materials, wood materials, and artifacts in nature, the more revelations come. Accidents become divinations. Mistakes become catalysts.

My whole being and my person are transformed by this feeling of self-esteem by being on a generative path. The redemptive powers of the creative life.

Of course, I am aware of how my psychological make-up (behavioral profile and life experiences combined), pushes me much more towards a creative archetype vs the managerial archetype (ref: clear distinctions Jordan Peterson makes here in this interview) , but I'm very curious how many people repress their creative side.

There are of course large swathes of our societies, from entrepreneurs and explorers to media and entertainment professionals who fully inhabit their creative side, but what are the percentages, how many people suffer from being in a professional life? where is the core of their business on diminishing returns, which undermines and drains?

Photo : Laura Williams

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