There are three things that, when brought together, create magic: passion, imagination and creativity.
With passion, you don’t just hear, you listen; you don’t have sex, you make love; you don’t just touch, you feel. You laugh longer, cry harder and connect deeper. Passion is an internal drive that inspires you to be fully alive!
When interviewing actor Peter Fonda, he told me when he was a young boy, he and his sister Jane lived with their father in a coastal town in Spain. Because his father was busy making movies, Peter often felt alone until he befriended an older gentleman—Pablo Picasso.
Peter spent many days in Picasso’s studio, listening to him curse in Spanish while he dug paint from containers and slapped it on his palette. He would scream and point at it, calling it “Ugly, worthless, good for nothing, stupid and a ridiculous blog of vulgar crap!”
Then, taking his brush and reverently speaking in French, Picasso would whisper, praise and compliment the paint as he applied it to the canvas. “You are beautiful, elegant. You are spectacular, breathtaking. I love you, je t’aime, je t’aime!”
Picasso yelled angrily in Spanish at what the paint was, but he deeply celebrated in French what it was becoming. In every sense, Picasso epitomized passion. Passion amounts to heart; not what we do, but why and how we do it.
Imagination is visualizing, being curious and having childlike wonder. It means reading between the lines, having insight and moving away from the traditional and the expected. We encounter imagination everywhere.
When I consolidated my six offices into one national headquarters, I hired the incredible Laura to run my operation. I told her she’d need her own business cards. She asked what her title should be and I said it didn’t matter, just make one up. Five days later, the cards arrived. They read, “Laura Calchera, Supreme Commander.” Now that’s imagination!
Imagination is our ability to see potential in ourselves and in every opportunity. Training ourselves to use our imagination gives us the ability to embrace possibilities. Edgar Allen Poe observed, “Those who dream by day are cognizant of many things which escape those who dream only by night.”
Creativity is our ability to use tools in new and surprising ways. With creativity, we arrange the stuff of our imagination into something real. We connect passion to heart and mind, and take them all together to a place they can’t go by themselves.
Thomas Edison had passion, imagination and creativity as he pursued his goal of crafting the lightbulb. He failed his way to success. My friend Bill Dore said, “If you continue to live in the past, your life will be history. Create your future from your future. When Edison invented the lightbulb, he didn’t start by trying to improve the candle.”
Passion, imagination and creativity help us use every moment to grow, to develop, to become more of who we can be. As we practice these three elements, we experience harmony and move closer to significance.