Learning how to ‘Think Outside the Box’

Thinking outside the box is an incredibly valuable skill. Practically speaking, thinking outside the box in the content creation world means having the ability to analyze a market and find an audience that isn’t having their needs catered to. You can apply this skill in any area such as music, art, business, etc.

As an example, let’s take a look at the video game Temtem. Temtem is a Pokemon clone where you catch, train, breed, and battle creatures. I was taking the same approach I took for other games when creating content, by creating value by providing distilled information in a concise and easily consumable format. My friend Wooptydo informed me of other content creators doing some very creative and imaginative things such as running an auction house on Twitch and arranging competitive tournaments. This blew my mind. I realized my thinking was too small and it begged the question, how do you think outside the box when you didn’t even realize you were in one to begin with?

How does one think outside the box though? How does one identify the so called box they are in? In all honesty, there is no easy way to acquire this skill outside of practicing it. Creativity inspired by analysis is a muscle and it needs to be exercised before you can use it regularly with ease.

The first step is to do your due diligence and do your research. There’s no way to think outside the box without first seeing how others do it. For the world of content creation, I take one game, piece of music, art, video, etc., and research all the different possible methods of creating content. Once the research is done, you can now take some time and analyze from the perspective of the content creator as well as the audience to see what needs are being met from an audience that wasn’t catered to before. This concept of research and analysis can be applied to almost anything.

After research comes practice. Practice comes by mimicking what other people are doing on a smaller scale. Going out of your comfort zone and facing uncharted territory and the possibility of failure is going to be incredibly uncomfortable. This is a necessary step however, as this is a muscle that needs to be developed through practice. This practice will help you to develop a workflow that is easily adaptable to new ideas and concepts as well as grow comfortable with the discomfort of trying something new and unfamiliar.

With trying new things comes the reality of failure. Embracing the reality of failure is a vital step for reaching success. Success isn’t the lack of failure, success is making progress despite the presence of failure. The lack of any failure in anything you do simply means you are taking no risks and not evolving as a content creator. Growth cannot be possible without struggling with failure. Face your failure and embrace it, and then learn to move on and see what you can glean from it and improve on one small thing for next time. Learning a new skill takes time and it will be a process, it will not be instantaneous.

Once you have put in the time to practice this skill, you will find that you will be able to “think outside the box” on demand. It doesn’t necessarily mean creating something incredibly unique or new all the time. Oftentimes you only need a slightly different approach and that will make all the difference in setting yourself apart from others and providing value to an audience that isn’t being catered to yet.

For those of you interested in the Twitch Temtem auction house: https://www.twitch.tv/tangent

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