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Where do brilliant ideas come from? And, is it possible to do great work under pressure every single day? The Accidental Creative podcast explores how to stay prolific, brilliant and healthy in life and work as a creative pro. Host Todd Henry (author of the books The Accidental Creative, Die Empty, Louder Than Words, Herding Tigers, Daily Creative) interviews artists, authors and business leaders, and offers tips for how to thrive in life and work. Listen in and join the conversation at Acci ...
 
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I was nine years old when my grandfather died. I still remember the funeral, not really understanding exactly what was happening, but knowing that I wasn’t going to get the chance ever again to throw football with, watch cartoons with, or make something cool with him ever again. Ever. That’s a tough concept for a nine year old to grasp. After the f…
 
Time is the currency of productivity. How we spend it is - in effect - how we spend our lives. But often we can allow time to simply slip through our fingers and find that no matter how hard we may work, it feels like we’re simply falling behind. It’s almost like we’re running on a treadmill that someone occasionally comes and moves slightly closer…
 
Some of the most effective ideas are those that solve a problem you are personally experiencing. If you have a need, it’s likely others have the same need as well. But often, we gloss over those moments of insight because it seems too daunting to act, or maybe we assume that someone else is probably working on it anyway. But, what if they’re not? W…
 
If you were to choose just one metric by which to measure your success, what would it be? Revenue? Well, we all know that revenue can be a tricky KPI because it doesn’t say anything about profitability. If I make a million dollars while spending two million, it doesn’t really mean much. Product shipped? Again, this doesn’t speak to the efficiency o…
 
The stats on the amount of information we encounter each day are staggering. And, the effects on adult humans are substantial. Researchers estimate that the adult attention span has decreased by about 12 minutes in the past decade. You have an average of 70,000 thoughts in a day. According to research cited in an article in Fast Company, in 2011 Am…
 
Everyone can see success coming well in advance, right? Of course not. When you're in the fray, you're often just trying to hold things together and get through this project, this week, or this year. It's only in retrospect that success seems inevitable. On today's episode, I share an essay from the Leader List (sign up for free!) about Mick Jagger…
 
We have heard the phrase "back to normal" often over the past year. But, is there really any such thing as normal? Now that we have had a taste of virtual and hybrid work, will we ever return to the way things were pre-2020? Today's guest is Mitch Joel. He's the author of several books, the host of the Six Pixels of Separation podcast, and an accla…
 
How you manage your time is often a key indicator of your success or failure. However, many of us think about time in terms of efficiency rather than effectiveness. What if a slight tweak in how we think about our time might be all we need in order to drastically improve our productivity and our sense of well-being? Today's guest is Jenny Blake. He…
 
What makes a great team... great? This is a question that many leaders wrestle with, and the complexity of the problem often causes them to settle for quick and easy solutions rather than really instilling a culture of excellence. In this interview, John U. Bacon shares his experience coaching the worst high school hockey team in the US and helping…
 
If you want to do your best creative work, you must learn to protect your "idea factory". This is the source of your deepest insights and value. A few years ago, I came across the Walt Disney business model from 1957. I liked it so much that I found a copy, framed it, and put it on my wall. The reason that I love this business model so much is beca…
 
My new book Daily Creative is available now wherever books are sold. Today's guest is Pat Hazell. Pat is the Chief Creative Officer at Sweetwood Creative and the host of the Creativity in Captivity podcast, where I was a recent guest. Showtime declared Pat one of the five funniest people in America. His 25 years of experience as a writer, producer,…
 
There is no shortage of advice about how to handle the start of a project, or how to push through and finish one, but what about that grey area in-between? What about the challenges and problems we encounter in the space between? On this replay episode, Scott Belsky is back to share wisdom from his fantastic new book The Messy Middle that will help…
 
Daily Creative releases on September 6th! Pre-order now to receive the audiobook for free, or pre-order 2+ copies and get Daily Creative delivered each day as an email or podcast episode. Learn more or register your pre-order at DailyCreativeBook.com. On this episode, I share two entries from the book Daily Creative. First, we discuss the nature of…
 
My new book Daily Creative is available now! Pre-order and get special bonuses, only available through launch. What do you do first thing? Is there any intentionality about how to enter your day? For the past twenty years, I've engaged in the exact same morning routine, and it's been both a calibrator and a life saver in many ways. In this episode,…
 
Some of what we think we know about relationships is actually... wrong. So many of the tried and true axioms that are passed along are simply not helpful. We need to better understand what the research truly says if we want to be better collaborators, better leaders, and better human beings. Eric Barker is the best-selling author of a new book Play…
 
What if the thing you do is highly competitive? How do you get noticed? On this episode, Amos Heller (touring bass player for Taylor Swift and many other artists) shares how he went from barista to touring bass player and some things he learned along the way that anyone can use to gain a foothold in a competitive industry. Mentioned in this episode…
 
Have you ever considered whether the work you’re doing today will still be around in five years? How about ten or twenty years? Many people don’t think strategically about how to create work that will resonate deeply for a long time to come. In this interview from 2017, Ryan Holiday discusses his book Perennial Seller that examines work that lasts …
 
I have been waiting for this announcement for over a year. Last Thursday I sent an announcement to all of our subscribers of 3 Things, my Sunday email that goes out each week with three creative sparks, that I've been working on a secret book during the pandemic. In fact, the book is about twice as long as any of my previous books and I wrote it in…
 
Everyone desires to make an impact through their work. But, there are some creative pros who seem to constantly separate themselves from their peers by delivering greater value. How can you become one of these impact players? Today's guest is Liz Wiseman. She's the best-selling author of several books, including Impact Players: How to Take The Lead…
 
Have you ever considered launching out into your own business? If so, today is just for you. We have on the show Jeffrey Shaw, author of The Self-Employed Life. We discuss everything from how to know when to make the leap to how to sustain yourself each day as a self-employed entrepreneur. This episode is sponsored by Shopify. Mentioned in this epi…
 
As I mentioned a few episodes ago, if I had to choose one gift to impart upon every person I meet – one master key that unlocks their potential – it would be bravery. We need radical bravery in our workplaces, our schools, our neighborhoods, and – God help us – in our politics. If more people committed to making brave choices daily, we would see st…
 
There are two distinct walls that we encounter in the creative process. The first is what Steven Pressfield calls Resistance. It's the barrier that keeps us from getting started with our most challenging work. But, there is also a second wall. It's the one we hit when we've achieved a little momentum, and we're tempted to quit. We must learn to pus…
 
It's been a long year, and many creative pros are experiencing some level of creative burnout. It's taken everything we have to deliver on expectations over the past year, and as we now return to a sense of "normal", the uncertainty and expectations are likely to rise even more. On this episode, I offer six tips for dealing with those moments when …
 
Technology is an extension of your capacity to accomplish your will. So, it gives you a “longer lever” when you want to move big rocks. However, we are finding that technology is encroaching upon us in ways we couldn’t have anticipated ten years ago. It’s more difficult to find the space necessary to do the important, creative work we’re tasked wit…
 
In the creative process, one of the silent killers is expectation escalation. It’s very important that we have a healthy understanding of our abilities and developmental opportunities, but for some of us, myself included, our expectations of ourselves and our work is our greatest competitor to full, free creativity. In his work On Intelligence, Jef…
 
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