Control versus Creativity – A Continuum

Have you ever been accused of having control issues?  If you say no (as in never ever), then get ready for my finger to point back at you.  Everyone has some arena in their life where control issues erupt.

Some of us deal with control power issues more than others like…er….me.

It took a bunch of awareness and flippity floppitiness of attitude but I’ve moved away from control to embrace influence, a.k.a. empowerment. 

And yahoo because my personal results with influence are much better than I ever scored with control.  People don't like already know that.  However, they don't mind being influenced just so long as they can make their own decisions.

My good friend Amanda gave me the secret that I’m going to share with you.  Let’s dish.


Nuclear power —
The Control versus creativity metaphor

Nuclear power makes a nifty metaphor for control versus creativity.  Those familiar with this type of energy know it comes in two flavors — fission and fusion.

Fission involves splitting the atom and its byproduct is toxic radioactive waste that destroys those exposed to it in painful, debilitating ways.  Atom bombs are the stuff of fission.

In contrast, fusion is the energy source of the stars and it involves merging hydrogen and oxygen atoms together.  Its primary byproduct is water, a life-giving substance necessary to survival. 

Thus, we can summarize fission versus fusion this way,

Fission = Destruction.

Fusion = Creation.

Yes, I know that’s simplistic and nuclear fusion generates some radioactive waste.  However, it's a fraction to that of nuclear fission, both in terms of quantity produced and the radioactive life span. 

And guess what?  The metaphor still works.  Why?  Because creativity is often partnered with change and even welcome change can produce angst, even if it’s accompanied by excitement.


Destruction versus Creativity

If you choose to express your personal nuclear power in a fission-like way, then you’ll bring destruction to yourself and others and leave toxicity in your wake. 

However, if you choose to live effectively, then your better choice is to express your nuclear power in a fusion-like way, giving it creative expression and amassing life sustenance as its by-product.

Control and creativity are a continuum, with 100% of either at the extreme ends.  The more you seek to maintain control, the less energy you have available for creativity.  Conversely, the more you allow your creativity to flow, the less need you have to control.


The ultimate goal is Empowerment

Power gets a really bad rap in our society and for good reason.  Too many folks misuse it.

Why does anyone seek to control another, though?  It’s because they feel a lack of their own power so they try to compensate by taking another’s.

The most powerful people, think of someone like the Dali Lama, don’t grab it from others but self-generate it using their own internal fusion reactors.  A dandy by-product of living an empowered life is that you automatically tend to foster empowerment in others.

The reason why?  Because if you live a fusion-like life, then you have the metaphorical equivalent of the energy of the stars.  And if you can command that kind of power at your fingertips, then why would you need to take power from others. 

Guess what the by-product is of empowering others?  Opportunities for you to gain ever-greater levels of creativity.  That means your star just keeps growing stronger and burning brighter.

Cool, huh?


Closing thoughts

In my next article, I’ll share a technique Amanda taught me to help me stay in a creative frame of mind.  Stay tuned.

And that’s my 2 cents.  What’s yours?  Inquiring minds want to know…