121 Days till Mindcamp!

Thursday to Sunday August 21-24, 2014
Orillia, ON, Canada

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Welcome to Mindcamp

First time here? Mindcamp is an annual creativity conference. If you feel like you’re missing something, check out What is Mindcamp? to find out what the heck this is all about.

Come here often? Add your email to “Read the Blog” (look in the right sidebar) to get an email every time we add a new blog entry, or Like us on Facebook to get updates in your feed.

First Out

first-nineThe first eight sessions are out of the gate!

Once again in the lead for Mindcamper-Who-Travels-Farthest-To-Be-A-Mindcamper, Wayne Morris returns to remind us that we have NO EXCUSES not to be more creative, and then tells us how.

You may recall Tessa Manuello’s star turn on the Passeggiata last August. She and friend Nathalie Doré will be there again this year, that is, be presenting a session about being there. About us being there. Then. About how. Oh, just click the link.

Just in case being there isn’t enough, Tim and Laura Switalski direct our attention to, well, directing our attention. Michel Neray helps us tell stories, while Steven Shama enjoins us to present it with heart.

Meanwhile, Liz Monroe-Cook helps us develop some good creativity habits, and Ginny Santos reminds us that we are playing for high stakes here.

And after all of this, Mary Ellyn Vicksta provides us with an opportunity for a little self-reflection.

Stay tune for more session releases very soon! And meanwhile, if you haven’t yet registered, now is the time… we are nearly half full :-)

And what would a session release be without a skill-testing contest? Less exciting, that’s for sure. Here it is: the first person who comments below with the name of the photographer whose work will be used to inspire us in a certain session wins a free drink at Mindcamp!

New Ways to Be Creative

terrisegalshotby Terri Segal

I have always considered creativity to be an artistic and an intuitive process. I am creative when I draw, paint, drum, write, express through the arts. Nobody ever told me in school, nor in my home that I was being creative when I found a solution to a problem, made a decision, or came up with a new idea that I was excited about.

It wasn’t until quite recently that I realized my definition of creativity as being only an artistic expression is actually a MYTH. Creativity goes way beyond the arts, it intersects with every aspect of life, it is a skill, it is a thought process, and when used effectively, helps us embrace change and drive change.

We are wired to shut down new ideas before they have even had a chance, for fear that “it will never work, that it is a bad idea, that we will be judged.” As children, our creativity is free, we play and engage our imagination without inhibition, without limits. And as we grow up and enter the school system that tends to favour “one right answer,” our new and different ideas are shut down. As we become youth, then adults, then seniors, our creative thinking skills are not fostered and developed. We close our minds to possibilities, we stay within our comfort zones, we stop taking risks, we become afraid of the new, we maintain the same self-limiting patterns of thought and behaviour that repeats old patterns and keeps us within the confines of fixed mindsets.

The good news is: creativity, like any skill can be developed and improved upon! Scientific research shows that creative thinking encompasses two distinct thought processes; divergent (generating many ideas) and convergent thinking (analyzing, judging and selecting). We are trained to flip flop between divergent thinking and convergent thinking without even realizing it. We judge our ideas before they have had a chance.

divergeconvergeCreative thinking separates these two thought processes. First, it is important to generate lots and lots of ideas, without judgement, without limiting ourselves. We allow our ideas to flow, we allow one idea to spark another idea, we make connections between two ideas that may not seem to have any correlation. The more ideas we allow ourselves to come up with, the more connections we make, the more possibilities we have to choose from and the more likely we will be to create a “breakthrough” solution to our challenge or opportunity. Only after many ideas have been generated do we engage in convergent thinking; we evaluate, analyze, choose and turn our idea into a reality.

Change is occurring more and more rapidly. Finding solutions to challenges and opportunities that do not have a prescribed answer or a blueprint or a map we can follow requires us to make use of our creativity and creative thinking ability. To fully embrace change, we need to give all of our ideas room to be heard and explored, we need to suspend judgement of ourselves and others and approach challenges as opportunities, with a creative mind-set; openness, flexibility & adaptability.

Terri Segal is one of our amazing presenters, and will definitely be offering something this year… we just don’t know what yet!

In Keeping with Our “Elements” Theme…

In keeping with our “Elements” theme this year…

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Time is Running Out

The Pie!Time is running out to save by paying your Mindcamp fees early! Anyone who pays in the next 10 days gets a 5% discount on their current fees: that’s nearly $35 to those of you filling half of a regular room.

Check your “Mindcamp Deposit Receipt” email for your current, un-discounted balance.

Click here to pay that balance right away by Paypal. If you pay before April 1 we will rebate your discount.

To pay your balance by Interac e-Transfer, email [email protected] for the correct amount.

Speaking of filling, Mindcamp is already 35% full! That means that more than one-third of the pie have already been taken. Don’t miss that last two-thirds of Mindcamp Pie! Register now!

We Had to Do This