Want more ideas & a more creative life? Try adding and subtracting.

June 8, 2016 - 4:55 pm

New Yorker writer Andrew Marantz says “additive tourism” is travel to embellish the self — seeing new art, tasting new foods, hearing new music.

“Subtractive tourism,” he explains, is travel taken to remove distractions keeping you fromĀ  yourself — attending a meditation retreat, visiting a spa, hiking in a national park.

Similar terminology can be used for day-to-day exploration to make our work and lives more lively, creative and rewarding.

Additive exploration is seeking out things to inspire you and embellish your creativity — trying ethnic restaurants, reading offbeat blogs, visiting new cities, enrolling in continuing education classes, talking with different people.

Subtractive exploration is finding and removing obstacles that block creativity — overcoming risk-aversion, putting aside excuses, eliminating self-doubt, ignoring devil’s advocates and others who criticize and condemn ideas.

Living a creative life and having fresh ideas calls for both additive and subtractive exploration.

Are you adding and subtracting?

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