A friend and I were talking yesterday about creativity. I confessed that it wasn’t until just a few years ago I had realized I’m creative. He was shocked, saying he thought I was one of the most creative people he knows.

But for most of my life, I had a flawed view of what creativity is. I thought that creativity was the domain of artists, musicians and fiction writers. I’m not much for writing poetry or novels, I’ve failed on three musical instruments and I can’t draw, paint or sculpt. (Seriously, I can’t make a circle with a compass.) So I figured I wasn’t creative.

That belief stayed with me for years until I began to comprehend that creativity is simply the ability to create things. Anything. Including (but certainly not limited to):
• Articles
• Jokes
• Ideas
• A project timeline
• An improvement to an existing product
• Photographs
• A legal argument
• Flower arrangements
• An instruction manual
• A funny voice
• Software
• Advertising copy
• A new service
• Parties
• A meal
• Travel routes
• An investment plan

It dawned on me that so many of the things I do (speaking, writing, coaching, consulting, acting, stand-up comedy) are in fact very creative. Ergo, I’m a creative person.

Why am I telling you this? Because you’re creative too! How do I know? Because everyone is creative. And if you don’t believe it, then that mindset is holding you back, the way it held me back for so long.

Whether you’re a salesperson, a sales manager, a small business owner, a professional or a CEO, if you want to increase your sales, you need to be creative. Think about it. You have to come up with solutions to ever-changing problems. You have to adapt to different prospects’ needs. You have to design sales presentations. You have to figure out your goals and how you’re going to achieve them. All of these things require creativity.

Fortunately, you’ve got plenty of it, even if you haven’t realized it until now. The next step is to tap into your creativity and maximize its potential. Here are a few ways:
• Read a book on creativity.
• Watch a video on creativity.
• Attend a creativity seminar or workshop.
• Talk with a friend or mentor.
• Read articles about creativity online.
• Subscribe to a newsletter or e-zine about creativity.

Figure out the ways in which you’re creative. Then work on developing your creativity and using it in your daily life. The more creativity you apply to your sales challenges, the more success you’ll achieve and the faster you’ll achieve it.

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