The Creative Sandbox Way™ Podcast

The Creative Sandbox Way™ Podcast with Melissa DinwiddieLife is too short to not express the innate creativity inside of you. Host Melissa Dinwiddie features individuals and organizations who are approaching life and work creatively, playfully, and innovatively — making a difference, or living life “in full color”— in other words, living the principles of her book The Creative Sandbox Way. Along the way, and in between interview episodes, Melissa shares practical tips on creativity, productivity, innovation, and leadership.

Whether you’re a corporate leader looking to boost innovation and foster a culture of creativity at work; or an individual looking to get past fear, self-doubt, resistance, and distractions, so you can finally make time for the art / music / writing / craft you’ve been longing to do, if you’re ready to feel more ease and enjoyment in life and work, walk the Creative Sandbox Way™ with Melissa.

Sign up to get new episodes delivered straight to your inbox once a week, and I’ll also send you the first 50 pages of my book, The Creative Sandbox Way: Your Path to a Full-Color Life.

Subscribe in iTunes

CSW Podcast 180: Finding the Underlying Goal


Note: For the fullest experience, I recommend listening to the podcast, as the audio version always contains additional comments and tangents not found in the blog post version.

CSW 180: Finding the Underlying GoalOn Sunday I led my second ever Creative Sandbox Playday.

Three people were in attendance.

Two of whom were me and my husband.

The first Creative Sandbox Playday had eight people, so only three was something of a let-down, though there were supposed to be four — one attendee got sick and wasn’t able to be there.

And a few others would have been there, but had scheduling conflicts.

This kind of thing is a ripe opportunity for gremlins to rush in and tell me what a loser I am.

read more…

CSW Podcast 179: How Gary Ware Uses Play to Create Magic


CSW 179: How Gary Ware Uses Play to Create MagicGary Ware is the Founder of Breakthrough Play, a company that helps teams be more creative, confident, and collaborative using play. To do this, Gary incorporates techniques that professional improvisers use to create amazing experiences without a script.

Gary has been in the marketing and advertising industry for over a decade and first got into improvisation as a way to better his public speaking. Gary quickly found that improv and play could be a solution to various business challenges, so he started doing workshops for his team and other people in his network.

I met Gary when we both attended the Applied Improvisation Network World Conference last summer, in Irvine, California. He was not only a fellow play evangelist, but he was incredibly generous. I felt like I’d met the little brother I’d always wanted.

Of course I had to have him on the podcast!

Have a listen to our conversation, and let me know what resonates most with you about Gary’s story. How will you integrate play more into your life?

In this episode we talked about:

  • Gary’s background & where he first became interested in the realm of play
  • How his view of play shifted after he graduated college
  • How the principles of improv allowed him to reconnect with his desire for play
  • His experience at his first improv class
  • The way that bringing in improv games to his team at work impacted their performance
  • Where he first learned that he could make a career out of using improv as a tool to help companies
  • Gary’s first applied improv gig
  • The objections that Gary came across when first offering his services & how he overcame those objections
  • His playful rebellion
  • Play +, Gary’s methodology of adding play to any situation to create magic
  • The 8 different play personalities by Stuart Brown
  • The importance of starting your day with play
  • Gary & Melissa’s something cool

Mentioned In This Episode:

Applied Improvisation Network World Conference

Marsha Shandur

Toastmasters

Episode 157: Gary Hirsch Wants You to Steal His Idea

World Domination Summit

Play: How it Shapes the Brain, Opens the Imagination, and Invigorates the Soul by Stuart Brown

Gary’s Something Cool: Crazy Aaron’s Thinking Putty

Scriptnotes

Melissa’s Something Cool: Weekend Read

Connect with Gary Ware:

Website | Instagram | Facebook | Twitter | Youtube

Quotes:

“Once I graduated, then that belief, that methodology that I followed with my dad of ‘you can play when the work is done’ didn’t work because, as we all know, as professionals, whether we run our own business or work for a company, there’s more work than can get done.” – Gary Ware

“It wasn’t until I found improv until I realized ‘oh my god, it’s play again!’”- Gary Ware

“When someone that you trust gives you a piece of advice, even if it terrifies you, sometimes you just gotta do it.” – Gary Ware

“For two hours, I didn’t think about my to-do list, I didn’t think about anything. I was completely present and we were playing.” – Gary Ware

“It [improv] helps you become a better leader.” – Melissa Dinwiddie

“Improv is just one form of play.” – Gary Ware

“Most adults hate playing and their impression of playing is that it’s frivolous, it’s stuff that kids do, it’s a waste of time.” – Gary Ware

“There is science that backs up that play is just as important as breathing.” – Gary Ware

“If only we could get our world leaders to play together.” – Melissa Dinwiddie

“If you add play to any sort of situation magic happens.” – Gary Ware

“In the business world, when you add play to brainstorming that’s when innovation happens.” – Gary Ware

“Boring is zero arousal. You are not compelled to do anything.” – Gary Ware

“We are wired to play.” – Gary Ware

Enjoy!

 

CSW Podcast 178: Hiring vs. Cultivating Creativity


Note: For the fullest experience, I recommend listening to the podcast, as the audio version always contains additional comments and tangents not found in the blog post version.

CSW 178: Hiring vs. Cultivating CreativityI was at a friend’s son’s bar mitzvah on Saturday, and at the luncheon after the service I sat across from another friend I hadn’t seen in ages. She wanted to know what I’ve been up to since we last spoke, so I explained that I started a consultancy that helps teams and organizations cultivate cultures of creativity, so they can become hotbeds of innovation.

She was surprised that such a niche existed. “Don’t companies just hire innovative people?” she asked. “Why would they need to cultivate a culture of creativity?”

It sounds like a reasonable enough question, but if we take a moment to unpack it, it’s based on flawed logic. But not uncommon logic.

Embedded in this question is one of the biggest challenges I face as a creativity instigator: the belief that read more…

CSW Podcast 177: A Chat with Culture Expert Mike Ganino


CSW 177: A Chat with Culture Expert Mike GaninoMike Ganino is a culture + storytelling expert who helps executives, teams, and thought leaders communicate, connect, and engage. He is the author of Company Culture for Dummies and has been named a Top 30 Culture Speaker by Global Guru.

Organizations love Mike’s high energy, high engaging workshops and keynotes that fire them up to rewrite the stories happening in their culture. They leave with real-life strategies they can begin implementing immediately for improved culture that drives employee and customer experience.

In this episode we talked about:

  • Mike’s recognition on Global Gurus
  • How Mike became an expert on culture & his book, Company Culture for Dummies
  • Mike’s thesis on culture coming down to relationships and communication
  • Company leaders setting the tone for company culture
  • Stories that live within organizations and their impact on culture
  • How Mike utilizes improv within his consulting with businesses
  • Who hires Mike
  • His career background — how he went from a dishwasher and trainer
  • Mike’s favorite stories of bringing improv into his work
  • Mike & Melissa’s something cool

Mentioned In This Episode:

Global Gurus

Company Culture for Dummies, by Mike Ganino (aff link; or click here for a non-aff link)

Training to Imagine: Practical Improvisational Theatre Techniques for Trainers and Managers to Enhance Creativity, Teamwork, Leadership, and Learning, by Kat Koppett (aff link; or click here for non-aff link)

Episode 135: Kat Koppett – “Improv is the Gym for Life”

Applied Improvisation Network Conference

Mike’s Something Cool:  The ONE Protein Bar (aff link; or click here for a non-aff link)

Melissa’s Something Cool: GorillaPod for Smartphones (aff link; or click here for a non-aff link)

Connect with Mike Ganino:

Website | Instagram | LinkedIn | Twitter

Quotes:

Culture is driven by leaders but it’s also driven by the people inside of the restaurant.” – Mike Ganino

 

“It all comes down to relationships and communication.” – Mike Ganino

 

“Even a relationship and the way we communicate with ourselves impacts culture.” – Mike Ganino

 

“My golden formula is self awareness + self compassion = the key to everything good.” – Melissa Dinwiddie

 

“Stories are ultimately what culture is. I think experiences lead to stories, stories collected, curated, and shared over time start to create culture.” – Mike Ganino

 

“Customer experience is an inside job, it starts with the culture of your team.” – Mike Ganino

 

“We’re always communicating. We can’t not communicate. It’s impossible.” – Mike Ganino

 

Enjoy!

Listeners Wanted!

Has the Creative Sandbox Way™ podcast made a difference in your life? Would you like to be featured on the podcast?

I love sharing listener stories, so if you have a story of how listening to the podcast has changed your life for the better in some way — big or small — I want to feature you in a Listener Spotlight.

Here’s how it works:

1. Just log into iTunes and leave a rating and review. (If you don’t know how to do that, you’ll find step-by-step instructions at creativesandboxway.com/itunes-review).

2. Then copy and paste what you wrote in your review into an email, and send it to me, along with why you want to be featured in a Listener Spotlight, and how the podcast has made a difference in your life. You can email me at creativesandboxway.com/contact.

That’s it!

If I pick you for a Listener Spotlight, we’ll have a relaxed, fun conversation, and the recording of our conversation will be part of a future episode! How cool is that?

Want a creative kick start?
Check out my book!

The Creative Sandbox Way: Your Path to a Full-Color Life, by Melissa Dinwiddie

What would change for you if you could totally revel in the joy of creating? You CAN, with The Creative Sandbox Way!

You’ll learn:

  • Melissa’s 10 fool-proof guideposts that have helped thousands get joyfully creating.
  • 5 reasons why creative play is good for you, AND for the world (it’s neuroscience, baby!)
  • Why “I’m not creative” is always a lie, and how to bust it.
  • How to turn creative blocks into friends.

AND you’ll get creating right in the book itself. 

ChrisGuillebeau“It’s one part field guide, one part creative practice—and I loved it. The Creative Sandbox Way is an adventure packaged as a book.”

~Chris Guillebeau
NYT best-selling author of The Happiness of Pursuit and The $100 Startup

Buy The Creative Sandbox Way by Melissa Dinwiddie - checkout with Amazon

 

Hear ye, hear ye! This is to serve as official notice that all links to anything for sale, be it books or courses, are likely to be affiliate links. What this means is that if you click through said links and make a purchase, although it won’t affect the price that you pay, a few coins will jangle into my coffers, enabling me to buy a packet of hard gluten-free biscuits to feed myself and my husband for another day, or perhaps a pen with which to create some artwork. Or perhaps they will contribute toward paying a fraction of my web hosting bill, so that this blog and podcast can continue to exist. Thank you kindly for your attention.

Thanks for Listening!

Thanks so much for joining me this week. Have some feedback you’d like to share? Leave a note in the comment section below!

If you enjoyed this episode, please share it using the social media buttons you see at the bottom of the post.

Also, please leave an honest review for the Creative Sandbox Way™ on Tunes!

If you’d also like your voice to be heard on the show, leave your question as a voice message right here.

And finally, don’t forget to subscribe to the show on iTunes to get automatic updates.

Subscribe in iTunes | Subscribe via Stitcher

Now go get creating!

xo, Melissa <3

PS — Pssst! Know someone who might benefit from seeing this today? Pass it on!

Manifestos by Melissa DinwiddieSubscribe to My Newsletter and Get My Manifesto!

Click Here!

 

CSW Podcast 176: Accept and Build


Note: For the fullest experience, I recommend listening to the podcast, as the audio version always contains additional comments and tangents not found in the blog post version.

CSW 176: Accept and BuildI feel like I’ve been away for a solid month. And that’s not far from reality, because I was in Paris and Basel for 2 1/2 weeks, and then I was home for a week recovering from jet lag and preparing for my Creative Sandbox Retreat, and then I was away again at my Creative Sandbox Retreat.

And now, as I’m recording this, it is exactly one month from the day we landed in Paris!

Anyway, Paris and Basel were amazing. Best vacation we’ve ever had.

Even though, I spent the entire time, from the fourth day onwards, on crutches! 

Yes, that’s right, on our third day in Paris I read more…

CSW Podcast 175: Johanna Walker Is a Fear-Blasting Storytelling Maven


CSW 175: Johanna Walker Is a Fear-Blasting Storytelling MavenJohanna Walker is the fear-blasting, storytelling maven for entrepreneurs and people with a mission, also known as a public speaking coach. She co-produces and co-hosts Truth Be Told, a popular storytelling event in Boulder, CO and is the founder of Women Who Speak, a transformational speaker coaching program for female leaders. She’s written and performed solo theater pieces that she’s toured throughout the US and Canada, and has worked with adolescent girls, women in jail & corporate execs, over and over witnessing the transformative power of telling our stories and speaking our truths.

In this episode we talked about:

  • How Johanna became a fear-blasting, story-telling maven for entrepreneurs and people with a mission
  • The fact that Johanna was teaching what she needed to learn at the beginning
  • Our personal experiences with becoming comfortable on stage & sharing our stories
  • How connecting to her body through dance allowed Johanna to connect to her speaking voice
  • The open door that the play state creates for us
  • Fear as a learned pattern that originally served us well that is no longer serving us and how creative play shakes those patterns loose and turns the fear into useable energy
  • Stepping through the doorway of fear
  • The power of our stories in others’ lives
  • Creativity being most powerful when it is contained
  • Johanna’s & Melissa’s Something Cool

Mentioned In This Episode:

Creative Sandbox Retreats

Polar Bear & Dog Playing Together

The Speaker’s Playground

Ignite Your Speaking Power Class

Melissa’s Something Cool – Prosthetic Leg Engineer

Connect with Johanna Walker:

Website | Blog | Instagram | Ignite Your Speaking Power Class

Quotes:

“I was pretty good at figuring out what the right answer was, so I would deliver the right answer or if I wasn’t 100% sure I had the right answer, I stayed quiet.” – Johanna Walker

 

“Connecting to my body through dance was a huge way of connecting to my voice and my power.” – Johanna Walker

 

“You can’t be in fear and be in that play state at the same time.” -Melissa Dinwiddie

 

“When we’re in that play state, we get our full, authentic selves to show up.” – Melissa Dinwiddie

 

“Play is bigger than fear. Play is stronger, it is more powerful than fear. Play is mightier.” – Johanna Walker

 

“Fear is energy. It’s a story we have in our head, but when we can let go of the story, drop into our breath, and our body, and our voice, then the fear is no longer a story it’s just energy and we can play with it.” – Johanna Walker

 

“We think that they [our stories] don’t matter, or it’s just about me, or it’s too weird, or it’s too dark, or it’s too personal, or there’s some reason not to tell it, but when you can really get that it’s not about me, it’s a gift, then it’s just like here we go.” – Johanna Walker

 

“The more clear the limitation is [on my creativity] the more room is for me to push up against the edges and feel my fullness and push the edges out a little.” – Johanna Walker

 

Listeners Wanted!

Has the Creative Sandbox Way™ podcast made a difference in your life? Would you like to be featured on the podcast?

I love sharing listener stories, so if you have a story of how listening to the podcast has changed your life for the better in some way — big or small — I want to feature you in a Listener Spotlight.

Here’s how it works:

1. Just log into iTunes and leave a rating and review. (If you don’t know how to do that, you’ll find step-by-step instructions at creativesandboxway.com/itunes-review).

2. Then copy and paste what you wrote in your review into an email, and send it to me, along with why you want to be featured in a Listener Spotlight, and how the podcast has made a difference in your life. You can email me at creativesandboxway.com/contact.

That’s it!

If I pick you for a Listener Spotlight, we’ll have a relaxed, fun conversation, and the recording of our conversation will be part of a future episode! How cool is that?

Want a creative kick start?
Check out my book!

The Creative Sandbox Way: Your Path to a Full-Color Life, by Melissa Dinwiddie

What would change for you if you could totally revel in the joy of creating? You CAN, with The Creative Sandbox Way!

You’ll learn:

  • Melissa’s 10 fool-proof guideposts that have helped thousands get joyfully creating.
  • 5 reasons why creative play is good for you, AND for the world (it’s neuroscience, baby!)
  • Why “I’m not creative” is always a lie, and how to bust it.
  • How to turn creative blocks into friends.

AND you’ll get creating right in the book itself. 

ChrisGuillebeau“It’s one part field guide, one part creative practice—and I loved it. The Creative Sandbox Way is an adventure packaged as a book.”

~Chris Guillebeau
NYT best-selling author of The Happiness of Pursuit and The $100 Startup

Buy The Creative Sandbox Way by Melissa Dinwiddie - checkout with Amazon

 

Hear ye, hear ye! This is to serve as official notice that all links to anything for sale, be it books or courses, are likely to be affiliate links. What this means is that if you click through said links and make a purchase, although it won’t affect the price that you pay, a few coins will jangle into my coffers, enabling me to buy a packet of hard gluten-free biscuits to feed myself and my husband for another day, or perhaps a pen with which to create some artwork. Or perhaps they will contribute toward paying a fraction of my web hosting bill, so that this blog and podcast can continue to exist. Thank you kindly for your attention.

Thanks for Listening!

Thanks so much for joining me this week. Have some feedback you’d like to share? Leave a note in the comment section below!

If you enjoyed this episode, please share it using the social media buttons you see at the bottom of the post.

Also, please leave an honest review for Live Creative Now on Tunes!

If you’d also like your voice to be heard on the show, leave your question as a voice message right here.

And finally, don’t forget to subscribe to the show on iTunes to get automatic updates.

Subscribe in iTunes | Subscribe via Stitcher

Now go get creating!

xo, Melissa <3

PS — Pssst! Know someone who might benefit from seeing this today? Pass it on!

Manifestos by Melissa DinwiddieSubscribe to My Newsletter and Get My Manifesto!

Click Here!

 

CSW Podcast From the Archive: The Dance of “Want To” and “Have To”


CSW 155: The Dance of "Want To" and "Have To"So a few weeks back, maybe a month ago now, I started practicing graphic recording tools and techniques in order to bone up for bringing graphic facilitation to my corporate and organizational workshops.

And because my practice is to share what I’m creating, I posted my efforts on Instagram, which feeds out to Facebook.

I even made a special Pinterest board, just for my Visual Practice stuff.

Now, my gremlins are pretty loud and nasty, so they didn’t hold back telling me all the ways that my “flip chart sketch notes” fell short of what I wanted them to be.

And because I’ve been following all sorts of masters of the field of graphic recording and graphic facilitation, my standards are pretty high, I admit.

So it came as a huge surprise when read more…

CSW Podcast From the Archive: The Frustration of the Flail


CSW 147: The Frustration of the FlailAt the end of 2015 I faced a moment of truth.

I realized I was not getting to my art table to make art.

Weeks had gone by, and I had not managed to squeeze in even a few minutes, despite the fact that my art table is literally right behind my computer desk. So all I have to do is turn around and take two steps to the left to be standing at it.

The gravitational pull of my computer is so strong, it was keeping me from doing even that much.

Clearly, something had to change.

What to do?

One thing I know is: the read more…

CSW Podcast From the Archive: Eat the Frog


CSW 143: Eat the FrogI had planned to share an interview today, but we had a “first world problem” disaster with airplane tickets to Paris that took up the entire afternoon.

The afternoon that was supposed to be devoted to working on the podcast.

Instead I was canceling and rebooking frequent flier mile airplane tickets — which inadvertently cost us $1500 we are hoping to get back (the jury’s still out on that) — then spending hours on the phone with customer support to try to get seats together.

Yeah, it’s all ridiculously complicated. Don’t ask.

Anyway, interview episodes take a lot of time to produce, so I thought I’d share a new productivity tactic that’s been rattling around in my brain.

It’s unfinished, so you’re getting a behind-the-scenes look at something I’m working on.

These are my early thoughts, as I shared them the earlier this week with my Creative Sandbox Community.

read more…

CSW Podcast 174: Behind the Curtain with Melissa On The Creativity Habit™ – Part 2


CSW 174: Behind the Curtain with Melissa On The Creativity Habit™ - Part 2I’m pulling back the curtain and turning the tables on the podcast, featuring two parts of an interview with… me!

Last week I shared Part 1 of my really intense interview with Story Whisperer Daphne Cohn, originally published on The Creativity Habit™. (Check out the beautiful page Daphne made for the episode on her podcast here.)

If you haven’t heard Part 1 yet, you might want to do that now, because this episode picks up where Part 1 left off.

Meanwhile, I wanted to let you know that I’m going on vacation — I’m headed to Paris for 2 weeks, and Basel, Switzerland for a few days after that, and in the interest of self-compassion, rather than knocking myself out to record extra episodes for the weeks while I’m away, during those weeks I’ll be sharing some episodes from the archive that feel especially yummy for August and early September.

Something Cool is also on vacation, and will return after I get back.

I also wanted to let you know that my Creative Sandbox Retreat, my annual 5-day creativity retreat, is coming up, September 12-16, and there are still a few spots available, so if you’d like to spend 5 days inside a hug, go to creativesandboxretreat.com. That’s creativesandboxretreat.com.

And with that, have a wonderful few weeks, and enjoy this peek behind the curtain with me and Daphne!

Some of the things we talked about in this part of the interview included:

  • getting dumped
  • money, money, money, and burying my head in the sand about it
  • realizing I’d been making excuses about my art for over a decade!
  • doing commissions vs. selling prints, and building a business that I thought was going to be the answer… but that actually sucked me dry
  • my new life, my new business, and the number one thing every artist must hold on to

Enjoy!

(Something Cool is on a hiatus. I’m off to Europe on 8/17, and in the interest of self-compassion, rather than knocking myself to record extra episodes between now and when I leave, during the weeks that I’m away I will be sharing some episodes from the archive that feel especially yummy for August and early September. I’ll be back with new Something Cools after I return!)

Listeners Wanted!

Has the Creative Sandbox Way™ podcast made a difference in your life? Would you like to be featured on the podcast?

I love sharing listener stories, so if you have a story of how listening to the podcast has changed your life for the better in some way — big or small — I want to feature you in a Listener Spotlight.

Here’s how it works:

1. Just log into iTunes and leave a rating and review. (If you don’t know how to do that, you’ll find step-by-step instructions at creativesandboxway.com/itunes-review).

2. Then copy and paste what you wrote in your review into an email, and send it to me, along with why you want to be featured in a Listener Spotlight, and how the podcast has made a difference in your life. You can email me at creativesandboxway.com/contact.

That’s it!

If I pick you for a Listener Spotlight, we’ll have a relaxed, fun conversation, and the recording of our conversation will be part of a future episode! How cool is that?

Want a creative kick start?
Check out my book!

The Creative Sandbox Way: Your Path to a Full-Color Life, by Melissa Dinwiddie

What would change for you if you could totally revel in the joy of creating? You CAN, with The Creative Sandbox Way!

You’ll learn:

  • Melissa’s 10 fool-proof guideposts that have helped thousands get joyfully creating.
  • 5 reasons why creative play is good for you, AND for the world (it’s neuroscience, baby!)
  • Why “I’m not creative” is always a lie, and how to bust it.
  • How to turn creative blocks into friends.

AND you’ll get creating right in the book itself. 

ChrisGuillebeau“It’s one part field guide, one part creative practice—and I loved it. The Creative Sandbox Way is an adventure packaged as a book.”

~Chris Guillebeau
NYT best-selling author of The Happiness of Pursuit and The $100 Startup

Buy The Creative Sandbox Way by Melissa Dinwiddie - checkout with Amazon

 

Hear ye, hear ye! This is to serve as official notice that all links to anything for sale, be it books or courses, are likely to be affiliate links. What this means is that if you click through said links and make a purchase, although it won’t affect the price that you pay, a few coins will jangle into my coffers, enabling me to buy a packet of hard gluten-free biscuits to feed myself and my husband for another day, or perhaps a pen with which to create some artwork. Or perhaps they will contribute toward paying a fraction of my web hosting bill, so that this blog and podcast can continue to exist. Thank you kindly for your attention.

Thanks for Listening!

Thanks so much for joining me this week. Have some feedback you’d like to share? Leave a note in the comment section below!

If you enjoyed this episode, please share it using the social media buttons you see at the bottom of the post.

Also, please leave an honest review for the Creative Sandbox Way™ on Tunes!

If you’d also like your voice to be heard on the show, leave your question as a voice message right here.

And finally, don’t forget to subscribe to the show on iTunes to get automatic updates.

Subscribe in iTunes | Subscribe via Stitcher

Now go get creating!

xo, Melissa <3

PS — Pssst! Know someone who might benefit from seeing this today? Pass it on!

Manifestos by Melissa Dinwiddie

Subscribe to My Newsletter and Get My Manifestos!

Click here!

Listen to more episodes on the main podcast page here

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