Your Creative Spring Break: HOW Design Live (Register by April 1!)

Hard to believe it’s the last week of March. If you’re like us, you’re feeling kind of spring-break-ish: a little burned out, a little overwhelmed, definitely needing to recharge the creative batteries.

Fortunately, HOW Design Live is on the horizon, just over a month away. [Allow us a quick promotional message here: The final, best Early Bird Registration offer ends this Friday, April 1. You’ll still save up to $200 compared to onsite registration prices.]

HOW, in all its forms, has always been about creativity and its care and maintenance. Whether you’re a creative entrepreneur needing guidance to launch your business, a creative manager leading a team or a creative agency staffer wanting to shape your career, you’ll find plenty of inspiration in the 110+ sessions on the HOW Design Live program.

We recently queried longtime HOW speaker, author, magazine contributor and friend Sam Harrison, about his creativity session in Atlanta, his hometown. Harrison frequently writes and speaks about finding new ideas and pitching them to clients and colleagues. His session, “How Asking Can Accelerate Your Creativity and Amplify Your Life,” will encourage creatives to advocate for themselves so they can do their best work.

Why are we so often afraid to ask questions?
Many of us were told in school or at home to “quit asking so many questions,” so we gradually toned it down. Also, we’re often afraid of appearing dumb or uninformed, especially when in a group or talking with clients and managers. And we sometimes think we’ll appear weak or incapable if we ask for help or collaboration. Questioning requires courage and, in many cases, a touch of diplomacy.

How can asking questions actually work to our advantage?
I’ve been investigating the power of asking questions – whether it’s asking for support and collaboration, asking for feedback and advice, asking what-if questions that spark ideas or asking questions of ourselves for personal growth.

Questions get us out of our own mind and into the minds of our clients and bosses, prospects and end users, strangers and passersby, friends and family. Questions help us connect with other people and hear their stories.

I’ve come to believe life is really more about asking questions than knowing answers.

You’re a creative professional yourself. Writing as much as you do, surely you get stuck, too. How do you overcome creative roadblocks?
Well, asking questions is one way. Sometimes I’ll take a sheet of paper and jot down quick notes as I ask myself, “What if I had absolutely no limitations on this project?” or “What if I were a six-year-old looking at this problem – or maybe a novelist or screenwriter or film director?” Anything to introduce a new perspective.

Other times I’ll ask myself pointed questions: “What’s really blocking me right now? Why am I stuck?” I’ll often find I’m tired and just need a break or I’m preoccupied with another situation that needs to be handled before moving ahead with the project in front of me.

Now here’s a question for YOU: Are you ready to get inspired, to learn, to connect, to become a better designer? Time to register for HOW Design Live. Do it this week for your best deal.