At school, I was called a daydreamer, off on another planet, easily distracted. Well, you may think this was a little harsh but to me, it was like receiving a compliment. Yes, I was off on another planet, stretching my imagination, actioning my talents, being curious, challenging myself and loving every minute!
Let me be perfectly clear when I say that imagination underpins every human achievement. Albert Einstein once said, “Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited to all we now know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire world, and all there ever will be to know and understand.”
Now Albert was a very astute human being but even he would not have predicted how knowledge would become so accessible to anyone with internet access. For this reason imagination has become more significant than any time in our history.
You may in your jobs and through education heard the growing importance of skills such as critical thinking and problem-solving. You will be hard-pressed to find a job specification that doesn't include these as desirable skills. Well, what they are wanting is "imagination."
Lots of children play sports and join clubs where they are learning important and valuable skills but they are not using their imagination. Lots of adults in business are working on strategy but they are not being creative. We need space to foster imagination in an environment where there is no right or wrong. Imagination helps frame our world. A child with an active imagination is preparing to be a flexible and creative adult. An adult flexing their imagination can lead to innovation and business strategy that gives an organisation the competitive edge.
We hear a lot about creativity but we need to remember creativity is imagination in action. From experience, we also know that adults can learn a lot from engaging with their children's imagination and having a bit of fun themselves!