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锘? Maple is our office dog. Shes an 8-month-old retriever mix Adidas Marcel Dionne Jersey , and thats about all the history the shelter from which she was adopted could come up with. So, she is a mystery. Is she a smart dog? Will she be easy to train? Will she be social with people and other animals?


Well, we have discovered a few things.


1. She loves to chew. Not a big surprise, shes a puppy. As long as we have rawhide, our furniture and office equipment are safe from toothy, slobbery destruction.


2. She loves to play. Again, this is not a big surprise. We may have mentioned, shes a puppy. But in my many years as a dog owner, I have never seen a more inexhaustible, energetic Adidas Luc Robitaille Jersey , playful dog. She literally does back flips sometimes and this is a 45 pound dog. Walks, fetch, trips to the dog park, teaching her to chase her tail so she runs around in circles none of these things or anything else has yet to tire her out enough to keep her still for longer than a few minutes.


3. Fetch is no fun unless you have to fight to get the ball. Fetch, in theory, should be great. She brings the ball, drops it, someone throws it, she chases it, etc Adidas Kyle Clifford Jersey , etc. Its minimally invasive on our time, and it wears her out. That is, except the phrase drop it, regardless of training, has no place in her doggie vocabulary.


Both Maple and I are determined to do opposite things. I am determined to get her to drop the ball and she is determined to make me chase her for it. I, being the human, was of course arrogant about the situation. I decided to give her a dilemma. When she approached me with the ball, I placed a small treat on the chair next to me. She cant hold both in her mouth in the same time, so after a few seconds of looking back and forth between me and the treat, she would invariably drop the ball in favor of tasty goodness.


I thought Adidas Kelly Hrudey Jersey , I am a genius, I have outsmarted my dog and now I can continue my work with minimal interruption. And Maple can play fetch. Everyone wins.


Except that Maple did not have the same idea. Determined not to let me have the upper hand, she began to devise ways to keep her ball and eat her treat, too. She has, to date, come up with three plans:


1. Knock the treat off the chair with her nose. Then hold the ball against the floor with her jaw (out of my reach) while picking up the treat. She then easily picks the ball back up, looks at me triumphantly, and dares me to try to get it away.


2. Push the treat out of the way. This is a variation on her first solution that involves pushing the treat several feet away from me with the ball, then, when well out of reach Adidas Jonathan Quick Jersey , dropping the ball and eating the treat. Its a fairly logical extension of method #1.


3. Hide the ball. This involves taking the ball somewhere far away, say, the opposite corner of the office, leaving it there, coming to get the treat, and then returning for the ball. Shes been around long enough to know shes faster than I am and will easily beat me back to the ball should I choose to go after it. Plus, she knows thats not the game. The game is getting her to drop it in my lap.


So now we finally come to the title of our post. Thinking creatively involves several skills, one of which is taking the tools at hand and finding new uses for them. Maple, with no thumbs, couldnt pick up more than one thing at a time. Instead Adidas Jeff Zatkoff Jersey , she learned to use the ball as a tool to scoot the treat to a safe eating distance. A great exercise for keeping your creative synapses firing is to take some ordinary things and come up with unique uses for them. This forces you to forget pre-conceived notions about function and limit, and open yourselves up to possibilities beyond traditional paradigms. Everything has a use beyond its mundane function, its just up to us to unlock its potential.


Thinking creatively also involves believing that there is an answer. Even if you seem limited by project parameters, there is always a way to come up with a creative answer. Always. I assumed that Maple would know she was outsmarted and give up. But, she didnt. She turned the tables on me and worked through the challenge in ways that I had not even anticipated.


Similarly, in both print and web design, remember that there are always solutions. Budget and technology are not valid excuses to limit your thinking. There is always a way to do more with less or to get around technological stumbling blocks. But that sort of true creative thinking can only be done if you open your mind to new possibilities.
Author’s Resource Box

Kristen Friend is the art director at the graphic design company, Luckynine Design. As a graphic, web, and logo design company Adidas Jeff Carter Jersey , Luckynine has worked with companies of all sizes. To learn more, visit http:www.luckyninedesign.

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锘? Have you ever reached for a brownie when you were trying to lose weight? Or stayed in bed when you intended to go to the gym? Or put off paying bills because it was “too much of a hassle”?