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What It Means to Truly “Think Outside the Box”

  • Sabrina Meherally

essay on thinking out of the box

How to radically reimagine the rules society imposes on us.

Society is filled with unwritten rules that many of us are taught to follow from a young age. For example, the belief that clothing is gendered, the concept of a weekend, and even more official laws like the ban of burqas and niqabs in European countries.

  • The author argues that these standards belong to something called the colonial imagination — ideas born out of colonial, white supremacist, patriarchal, and hyper-capitalist values with the intention of upholding power and privilege for a select few, at the expense of everyone else.
  • To rewrite these rules, we need to think outside the box. The problem is that our “out-of-the-box” thinking generally happens within the confines of the colonial imagination.
  • When we talk about thinking outside the box, the real exercise and challenge is to step entirely out of those boundaries.
  • The catalyst for real change exists in our ability to radically imagine new possibilities (even if they feel out of reach), to question the way things are, and to stretch the boundaries of what could be.

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Where your work meets your life. See more from Ascend here .

How often have you questioned the separation and labeling of “men’s” and “women’s” clothing in retails stores? It’s a standard that was established years ago , when most people were less conscious of (or simply didn’t care about) the harm this practice has on gender non-conforming people  — or anyone who challenges the binary. Still, big retailers continue to replicate and rely on this model. It’s now become so engrained in practice that many of us don’t question it, unless it impacts us personally.

  • Sabrina Meherally is an inclusive design strategist, helping organizations create delightful, respectful, and responsible customer experiences. She is the founder of Pause and Effect and the host of the Inclusive Design podcast . Her work has been featured in Forbes and the Vancouver Tech Journal. Follow Sabrina on LinkedIn where she writes about product inclusion, racial equity, sustainability, and innovation.

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12 Ways to Think Outside the Box (+ How to Boost Your Creativity)

Last Updated: June 7, 2024 Fact Checked

What does it mean to think "outside the box?"

Ways to think outside the box, benefits of thinking outside the box, strengthening your creative mind.

This article was co-authored by Mary Church, PhD and by wikiHow staff writer, Jennifer Mueller, JD . Dr. Mary Church is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist based in Honolulu, Hawaii. With over a decade of clinical experience, she aims to integrate evolution, genetics, and neuroscience within the practice of psychotherapy. Dr. Church holds a BS in Psychology from Eckerd College and an MS and PhD in Experimental Psychology from The University of Memphis. She completed a Post-Doctorate in Clinical Psychology at The University of Hawaii at Manoa. In addition, Dr. Church is a member of the American Evaluation Association and Hawaii-Pacific Evaluation Association. There are 15 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been fact-checked, ensuring the accuracy of any cited facts and confirming the authority of its sources. This article has been viewed 816,662 times.

If you've ever been told you should "think outside the box" and didn't understand exactly how to do that, you've come to the right place. We talked to research and clinical psychologist Mary Church to get the low down on what it means to think outside the box and how you can do it in your life. Stick around and you'll also learn the many benefits of thinking creatively and how you can train your brain to be more open, flexible, and creative.

Thinking Outside the Box

When you think outside the box, you throw out the usual assumptions people would make about a problem and look at it from a totally different perspective. Use techniques such as brainstorming, mind mapping, and role-playing to stimulate your creative thinking so you can more easily think outside the box.

essay on thinking out of the box

  • It's hard for a lot of people to think creatively like this because it requires you to step outside of your comfort zone and think about some potentially risky things.
  • Thinking outside of the box can also cause you to question beliefs you've held for a long time. While that can be tough, it's also necessary for you to grow as a person.
  • True "outside the box" thinking is actually pretty rare! Surveys have shown that fewer than 10% of people think creatively on a regular basis. [2] X Research source

Step 1 Move to a different location.

  • For example, if you're stumped trying to come up with a project for a class, you might take your dog to the park and try to put the project out of your mind—something might come to you once you give the left hemisphere of your brain a rest.

Step 2 Brainstorm ideas without judgment.

  • If you're having a hard time letting yourself loose, try to think of a solution to your problem that would be illegal. While you're not going to actually do the illegal thing, having that idea up on the board shows you that literally everything is on the table.
  • If the problem is just too broad for you to tackle, you might need to scale it back with parameters. For example, instead of brainstorming how to increase social media engagement, you could start by focusing on a single platform.

Step 3 Look at the problem from a different angle.

  • For example, if you want to run a marathon, you might imagine that you've just finished your first marathon, then map out the steps it took you to get to that point.

Step 4 Draw a picture of the problem (or a possible solution).

  • If you're not an artist or not comfortable drawing, you might also mold something in clay or build something with blocks—these activities also stimulate your visual brain and get you thinking outside of the box. [8] X Research source

Step 5 Listen to other people's ideas.

  • People tend to surround themselves with other people who are very similar to them because it's comfortable. Make an effort to surround yourself with people from diverse backgrounds so that you always have access to different viewpoints.

Step 6 Talk to a little kid about it.

  • Playing with children's toys can put you in this headspace as well and help you come up with new and innovative ideas that you never would have thought of before.

Step 7 Ask someone outside your field.

  • Talking to someone who isn't making the same assumptions as you is a bit of a shortcut—you can also think through this and try to imagine what they would say, but that takes quite a bit of empathy.
  • This doesn't just mean having a conversation! You can also read articles about how the problem is addressed in different fields or otherwise expose yourself to different methods.
  • For example, if you're trying to come up with new plays for your football team, you might go to a rugby game and see if you can get some inspiration from some of their plays that you could adapt for your own sport.

Step 8 Roleplay different solutions to see how they play out.

  • Going backward like this helps you see the different parts that go into something so that you can more easily see where there's a gap you could fill or a process that could use some improvement.

Step 10 Go for a walk to boost your inspiration.

  • If you can't get outside, walking inside can be just as beneficial, as can any other kind of movement. Getting up and moving around, even if it's just to do a few jumping jacks, will kickstart your creative mind.

Step 11 Start over with a clean slate.

  • For example, if you're looking for a new and original breakfast idea, you might question why French toast is always sweet. This could lead you to the idea of creating a savory French toast dish.

Malcolm Gladwell

Be creative without constraints. "If everyone has to think outside the box, maybe it is the box that needs fixing."

Step 1 Growth

  • Thinking through many possible solutions to a problem also means that you're aware of other things that might work if you try one thing and it fails.

Step 3 Empowerment

  • You won't shy away from problems that might seem too complex or too difficult because you'll know that there are different ways of looking at those things. You'll also be less afraid of failure.

Step 4 Opportunity

  • People who think creatively often seem to be very lucky, but really it's just that they're more aware.
  • They're also more flexible and able to see the value in many different paths as opposed to being committed solely to one way of doing things.

Step 5 Innovation

  • Fear can cause you to stick to well-worn paths that you know will be successful, rather than taking risks that might pay off big but require you to blaze your own trail.
  • Envisioning the worst-case scenario can help you convince yourself that even that isn't bad enough that you shouldn't try the riskier move.

Step 2 Harness the power of positive thinking.

  • Positive thinking will also improve your overall mood, and a good mood also increases your creativity. [25] X Research source
  • Repeating positive affirmations each day is one way to encourage more positive thoughts and help you eliminate the negative ones.

Step 3 Try creativity-boosting brain exercises.

  • Alphabetizing words: Take a word—any word—and alphabetize the letters that make up that word (so, for example, "number" would be "bemnru"). This works because you're requiring your brain to do something unconventional with the letters of the word and also breaking up the word into its constituent parts—both of which are aspects of thinking outside of the box.
  • Generate ideas: Pick up a household object and spend 5 minutes coming up with a list of all the different ways you could use that object. This helps your mind become more comfortable seeing unconventional uses for things.

Step 4 Change up your routine from time to time.

  • Eat with your hands
  • Commute to work or school by a different route
  • Listen to music you don't normally listen to
  • Turn everything off and just sit in quiet and observe

Step 5 Step outside of your comfort zone and try new things.

  • For example, you might learn to play a musical instrument or take a dance class.
  • While classes in the arts will pretty directly stoke your creativity, don't overlook things like learning how to play a new sport or even learning a new language.

Step 6 Talk to people from different cultures and backgrounds.

  • Beyond just talking to people, you can get similar benefits by reading articles and stories from different cultures or written by people with different backgrounds.

Step 7 Practice mindfulness so your mind is less reactive.

  • Mindfulness also teaches you to notice things with intention and curiosity rather than judgment, which helps you think more unconventionally. [33] X Research source

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About This Article

Mary Church, PhD

To think outside of the box, try to learn new things and pick up new skills as much as possible, which will broaden your horizons and help you think of unique and unusual ideas. Also, exercise your creativity by doing fun, creative projects at home that require you to be resourceful. Even just changing up your daily routine by doing things like taking a different route to work or grabbing breakfast from a new coffee shop can spark your creativity and help you think of a new way to approach an issue. To learn how to come up with creative solutions to problems, keep reading! Did this summary help you? Yes No

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Why You Need to Think Outside the Box For one thing, not every solution comes in a box.

By Timothy Sykes Edited by Dan Bova Jan 10, 2019

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

You've undoubtedly heard that it's a good thing to think outside the box. But what exactly does that mean, why is it a good thing and how can it benefit your career?

Thinking outside the box simply means that you're willing to consider different solutions and methods for reaching your desired outcome. That is to say: You want to get from point A to point B, but you don't necessarily need or want to take the tried and true route to get there.

Thinking differently can have a powerful and positive effect on your career. As an entrepreneur, here's why you need to think outside the box and how it can help you get ahead:

Questioning the status quo is a good thing.

If everyone just accepted things the way they are, then there would never be any innovation or improvement in the world. If Thomas Edison had shrugged and figured things were good enough the way they were with gas lamps, light bulbs and the electricity to power them might never have been developed. If he hadn't thought outside the box, the world could be a very dim (literally) place.

If you view things as unchangeable, then nothing will ever change for the better. By thinking outside the box and questioning the status quo, you'll constantly be considering how you could improve an experience, product or service. This allows you to keep growing -- and can lead to intelligent and forward-thinking decisions in business.

Related: 6 Ways to Think Outside the Box When Marketing Your Small Business

Greater perspective.

The world can become very small if you're close-minded. Thinking outside the box can expand your worldview, allowing you to have greater perspective on the events and happenings in your career (and in life). When you're willing to consider alternative points of view and ways of doing things, you'll be more open to a variety of different points of view and potential solutions.

A greater perspective can make you more receptive to different ideas, which means that you won't be limited by a small worldview. When you're open to limitless possibilities, the possibilities are endless!

Higher-quality work.

Super-successful companies have a different approach to company culture. For instance, consider the fashion retailer Zappos. It offers employee perks like free food, complimentary wellness services and even an on-site shoeshine service.

On the one hand, it would be easy to dismiss these things as a waste of money and a threat to the company's bottom line. However, they take the long view. They see that by offering these benefits and perks, they attract and retain better employees. Happy and healthy employees tend to be more productive, loyal and harder-working.

By thinking outside the box with their company culture, they ultimately get a better caliber of employee and work, which makes it well worth the expenditure they put out with these offerings.

Related: Stop Trying to Think Outside the Box and Think More Strategically in the Box

More creative problem-solving.

When you're thinking in the box as opposed to outside of it, your career growth can be stunted. When there are a finite number of ways that things can be done also means that there is a limit to what you can achieve.

Alternatively, when you think outside the box, suddenly there are many more possibilities and opportunities. When you allow for any and every possible solution, you may in fact end up coming up with more creative ways to solve problems.

Consider Netflix, for instance. By dreaming up an alternative to the standard video store template with rentals and late fees, they were able to create a worldwide sensation. What creative solutions could you come up with if you think outside the box?

It helps you stand out.

Why be a face in the crowd when you were born to stand out? When you are able to approach your business and career from an out-of-the-box point of view, you are in essence allowing yourself to think differently.

The ability to think outside the box can be an asset to you as an individual or as a business. Professional leaders and pioneering companies know this very well. One famous example? Behemoth tech company Apple, which has built its career on this key principle: "Think different."

Moral of the story? Don't be afraid to be different, because it can separate you from competitors and help you stand out in a good way.

Related: 5 Ways to Make Your Personal Branding Statement Stand Out

Stay adaptable.

Whether you're a writer, a trader or the founder of a food truck, one thing is certain: Your career will change over time. Technology, people's tastes and all sorts of other factors are constantly evolving, and you'll need to be able to change in kind to remain relevant.

For example, as a teacher, I have to constantly keep evolving to remain current. If I didn't evaluate and alter my techniques with the changing times, I'd quickly become a dinosaur in my field.

Perhaps one of the most profound effects of thinking outside the box is that it will help you stay adaptable. Your mind won't be closed off to new ideas or solutions or situations, and therefore you'll be better able to navigate the ever changing landscape of business.

Entrepreneur and Penny Stock Expert

Timothy Sykes is an entrepreneur and a penny stock expert, trader and advocate. He has been featured on CNN, Fox News, CNBC and more. Watch his media appearances and speeches on  Youtube here.

Want to be an Entrepreneur Leadership Network contributor? Apply now to join.

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To Think Outside the Box First Know Your Box

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Outside the Box Thinking

What is outside the box thinking.

Outside-the-box thinking is an ideation form where designers freely discard common problem-solving methods to find the true nature of users’ problems, falsify old assumptions and be innovative. Vital to the design thinking process, out-of-the-box thinking means reframing problems with a wider grasp of the design space.

“Thinking outside of the box allows you to get rewards outside of your reach.” — Matshona Dhliwayo, Philosopher, entrepreneur & author

See where—and what—thinking outside the box can get you:

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Break Out of the Box to Find Spectacular Solutions

Traditional approaches to problem-solving can distort design teams’ views of problems. The most innovative solutions—both in product design and service design —usually come from designers who dared to step off the path of linear thinking to ask “Why?”. Design problems are usually complex, with many hard-to-see factors at play between users, the diverse realities they face and solutions they would find most effective, helpful and desirable. To follow a vertical, linear train of thought when addressing these would likely soon cause some big obstacles. With outside-the-box thinking, you can challenge assumptions that would otherwise constrain you, therefore freeing you to sidestep the dangers of meeting a design problem head-on.

Thinking outside the box can save you and your team the headaches of pursuing a perceived problem and ending up developing uninventive, semi-effectual solutions. So, instead of chasing shadows, you can work your way around the boundaries and explore the bigger picture. Moreover, it's a great way to discover other resources that might be available to you, spot market gaps and, indeed, inspire your design team in the ideation stage of any project . That’s why thinking out of the box is synonymous with, and integral to design thinking. 

“The box” is the apparent constraints of the design space and our restrictions in perspective from habitually meeting problems as everyday “if x, then do y to get z” tasks. That clinical, critical line of reasoning we’re used to outside the design space will easily impose its limitations in design ideation. You can’t get a holistic view of the problem unless you start to explore horizontally and find its edges. To get outside the box, it’s important to:

Focus on overlooked aspects of a situation/problem .

Challenge assumptions – about any aspect of the problem or users.

Seek alternatives – not just alternative potential solutions, but alternative ways of thinking about problems .

essay on thinking out of the box

© Yu Siang and Interaction Design Foundation, CC BY-SA 3.0

How to Break Out of Your Design Box

Lateral thinking and divergent thinking methods can lead to the best results. Early in the ideation stage is the time to get disruptive and reconnect with a similar sense of wonder to how children challenge the norms which adults grow to accept without question. A persistence with “Why?” is the key, as is a judgement-free atmosphere in your ideation session. You want to ask significant questions that may seem outlandish – the idea being to scrutinize the assumptions everyone else would go along with because they’re “the done thing” and see if they’re actually valid.

Essentially, you want to reframe the problem and:

Understand what’s constraining you and why.

Find new strategies to solutions and places/angles to start exploring.

Find the apparent edges of your design space and push beyond them – to reveal the bigger picture.

Of the various methods you can use, a chief one is provocations , where you make deliberately false statements about an aspect of the problem/situation . This could be to question the norms through contradiction, distortion, reversal (i.e., of assumptions), wishful thinking or escapism , for example:

essay on thinking out of the box

Here, we see some norms of conventional air travel challenged and some unpredictable (and even socially unacceptable) notions to trigger our thinking. Our example showcases this method:

Bad Ideas – You think up as many bad or crazy ideas as possible, but these might have potentially good aspects (e.g., having self-contained compartments with toilets for passengers traveling together). You also establish why bad aspects are bad (e.g., raising prices so exorbitantly would A) foster social exclusion and B) not guarantee safety, anyway).

Design thinking is ideal for outside-the-box thinking, especially since its fluidity as a process lets you iteratively research, ideate, prototype and more as you fine-tune your way to the best solution. Ultimately, you should be able to investigate your problem—including factors affecting it—and harvest insights from its many dimensions by brainstorming or other means. From there, you use convergent thinking to zero in on the best solutions.  

essay on thinking out of the box

Learn More about Outside-the-Box Thinking

Take our Creativity course , featuring outside-the-box thinking.

Read how one design team leveraged outside-the-box thinking to great effect.

Grammarly’s blog succinctly captures the idea .

Questions related to Outside the Box Thinking

This video aptly answers the question of how to think outside the box.

Thinking outside the box means thinking freely and creatively—off the beaten path. It encourages a departure from standard or predictable thinking. It implies adopting unconventional and innovative approaches to problem-solving. Here is what you can do to get started:

Dive into the corners others might miss. Look beyond the obvious and focus on elements often overlooked in a situation.

Question the assumptions entrenched in the problem or regarding the users. Challenge the "given" and ask whether those assumptions are valid.

Don't settle for the expected. Seek not only solutions but also how to frame and approach the problem.

Yes, thinking outside the box is a valuable skill in problem-solving. It goes beyond regular solutions by exploring overlooked aspects, challenging norms, and looking past apparent boundaries. The skill involves questioning the usual ways of doing things and finding innovative solutions. The essence lies in addressing the edges and pushing beyond them to develop a dynamic and creative mindset.

Thinking outside the box involves lateral and divergent thinking methods.

During the ideation stage, be disruptive, persistently ask "Why?" and create a judgment-free atmosphere.

Reframe the problem by understanding constraints, finding new strategies, exploring different angles, and pushing beyond apparent boundaries to reveal the bigger picture.

Use provocations, such as deliberately false statements, to question norms and challenge assumptions.

Here are a few innovative ideas from the home to the workplace:

At Home - Imagine you have a small, unused space under your staircase at home. Comfortable seating, soft lighting, and bookshelves can turn an overlooked area into an inviting space. It demonstrates a creative use of space beyond its "supposed" purpose.

At Work - A common challenge in an eCommerce app is a high rate of product returns. It mainly happens because customers need more certainty about how items will look on them. So, you incorporate augmented reality (AR) for virtual product try-ons to enhance user satisfaction.

Creativity in thinking outside the box means introducing fresh and different ideas and breaking away from the norm. It is like analyzing other paths. The process involves exploring alternative options, questioning the "done thing," and finding clever solutions to problems. This video on Edward de Bono's "thinking hats" framework shows the connection between creative thinking and outside-the-box thinking. The "thinking hats" framework disrupts routine thinking, sparks creativity, and helps find new ideas and answers that change how to tackle challenges.

An open and dynamic perspective provides a continuous flow of imaginative thinking. Creativity and outside-the-box thinking are about going beyond regular thinking to find possibilities. It paves the way for smart solutions and makes problem-solving more interesting.

Thinking outside the box is closely tied to critical thinking. While critical thinking is a part of the process, thinking outside the box goes a step further. 

Critical thinking involves analyzing, evaluating, and reasoning through information to make judgments. It encourages exploring alternative perspectives and solutions.

Thinking outside the box focuses more on creative problem-solving and challenging assumptions. It involves questioning assumptions, challenging traditional norms, and reframing problems with a broader understanding.

Thinking outside the box shares similarities with critical thinking but is not synonymous. So, while complementing each other, they represent distinct aspects of cognitive processes .

Thinking outside the box is a positive and valuable approach. It is about looking at things differently, not just sticking to the usual ideas. Such techniques make problem-solving more exciting and compelling.

While the initial introduction of unconventional ideas might seem impractical or risky, the long-term benefits are substantial. This approach has the potential to handle creative blocks , lead to breakthroughs, and overcome limitations imposed by traditional thinking.

You can sign up for our comprehensive course ' Creativity: Methods to Design Better Products and Services , to learn more about outside-the-box thinking. It equips you with skills and step-by-step methods to enhance your ability to generate innovative and valuable solutions. You will gain practical insights and tools to foster creativity in various workflows, programming algorithms, and professional settings.

Learn about hands-on ideation methods.

Explore more about divergent and convergent thinking in this video:

Answer a Short Quiz to Earn a Gift

What does "outside-the-box thinking" involve in design?

  • Discard common approaches to uncover users' real problems
  • Follow traditional problem-solving methods
  • Rely on linear thinking to solve issues

Which thinking methods are essential for outside-the-box thinking?

  • Analytical and critical thinking
  • Lateral and divergent thinking
  • Linear and vertical thinking

What is a key strategy in outside-the-box thinking?

  • Accept all assumptions as valid
  • Challenge existing assumptions
  • Ignore constraints

What technique can designers use to stimulate outside-the-box thinking?

  • Follow standard procedures
  • Focus on traditional solutions
  • Use provocations to question norms

What can outside-the-box thinking help designers discover?

  • Market gaps and new opportunities
  • New UX design tools for collaboration
  • Traditional market trends and design solutions

Better luck next time!

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Literature on Outside the Box Thinking

Here’s the entire UX literature on Outside the Box Thinking by the Interaction Design Foundation, collated in one place:

Learn more about Outside the Box Thinking

Take a deep dive into Outside the Box Thinking with our course Creativity: Methods to Design Better Products and Services .

The overall goal of this course is to help you design better products, services and experiences by helping you and your team develop innovative and useful solutions. You’ll learn a human-focused, creative design process.

We’re going to show you what creativity is as well as a wealth of ideation methods ―both for generating new ideas and for developing your ideas further. You’ll learn skills and step-by-step methods you can use throughout the entire creative process. We’ll supply you with lots of templates and guides so by the end of the course you’ll have lots of hands-on methods you can use for your and your team’s ideation sessions. You’re also going to learn how to plan and time-manage a creative process effectively.

Most of us need to be creative in our work regardless of if we design user interfaces, write content for a website, work out appropriate workflows for an organization or program new algorithms for system backend. However, we all get those times when the creative step, which we so desperately need, simply does not come. That can seem scary—but trust us when we say that anyone can learn how to be creative­ on demand . This course will teach you ways to break the impasse of the empty page. We'll teach you methods which will help you find novel and useful solutions to a particular problem, be it in interaction design, graphics, code or something completely different. It’s not a magic creativity machine, but when you learn to put yourself in this creative mental state, new and exciting things will happen.

In the “Build Your Portfolio: Ideation Project” , you’ll find a series of practical exercises which together form a complete ideation project so you can get your hands dirty right away. If you want to complete these optional exercises, you will get hands-on experience with the methods you learn and in the process you’ll create a case study for your portfolio which you can show your future employer or freelance customers.

Your instructor is Alan Dix . He’s a creativity expert, professor and co-author of the most popular and impactful textbook in the field of Human-Computer Interaction. Alan has worked with creativity for the last 30+ years, and he’ll teach you his favorite techniques as well as show you how to make room for creativity in your everyday work and life.

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All open-source articles on Outside the Box Thinking

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What does thinking outside the box mean?

3 simple examples of thinking outside the box, why thinking outside the box is important, 8 ways to think outside the box.

What if for every plateau we reach, resource limit we hit — or even every challenge we face — we stopped and asked: “what if?” What if we challenged the rules and started thinking outside the box?

That’s exactly what 17 smart software developers did in Oregon in the spring of 2000. Martin Fowler, Jim Highsmith, and 15 other colleagues convened and broke the rules of software development . They thought up a concept that completely erased the standing software development rules to speed up software time to market. That concept is the agile methodology we know today.

But what does it mean to think outside the box — to encourage workplace autonomy and innovation? After all, isn’t there value in leaving things as they are? Even when you’re not trying to disrupt an entire industry, thinking out of the box can make a difference throughout your entire organization. Read on to learn what that looks like, why it’s important, and how to think outside the box yourself.

Thinking outside the box is a metaphor often used to describe different, unconventional, novel, or creative thinking. 

It shows up in simple things like using paper to make crafts — instead of just writing on them — for example. Or in more complex forms e.g thinking up concepts like agile methodology for problem-solving.

According to Fast Company, the term came into use in the 1970s . Management consultants would give clients a nine-dot puzzle and ask them to connect the dots with only four lines.


Naturally, this task requires some lateral thinking, so the consultants would encourage their clients to “think outside the box.” In this case, in order to come up with an innovative solution, they needed to literally look beyond the box and create something else.

One thing stands out for us from this exercise. At first, you see a box. To draw those four lines, you have to first exhaust the options within the box. Only then can you realize that the problem is the box itself. You come to that realization after understanding the box and uncovering its limitations. 

To think outside of the box is to fully understand the status quo — then challenge it.

From the home to the workplace, and innovative ideas that drive human evolution, here’s what thinking outside the box looks like:

  • At home - a better way to fold clothes : Marie Kondo thought up a way to fold clothes to save storage space and to see every piece of clothing at a glance.
  • At work - doubled app downloads on a $35 Budget : In a viral marketing stunt, Thursday intern, Anya Jackson cuffed herself to a pole to generate downloads. All she spent was money for the cuffs, board, and marker.
  • In innovation - the wheel and axle : Humans invented the wheel, later improving on a simple design to create the axle, plow, and later the engine.

Thinking outside the box helps you to solve challenging problems . It allows you to look beyond a defined scope of relevance to find answers that would not exist otherwise.

The agile methodology for example came from looking beyond established software development procedures. The result of adopting agile? Faster software time-to-market and increased profits.

Thinking outside the box also forces you to scan your horizon. And when you scan your horizon, you become aware of impending threats and opportunities. That strategic foresight keeps you ahead of profit or loss curves because you’re able to be proactive.

Companies are beginning to understand that if we don’t adapt to try new things, we stagnate — and sometimes even lose our position to the people and organizations who choose to dare. The value of having different perspectives on a team can’t be overstated. In fact, it’s the true benefit of diversity in the workplace . Diversity of experience, divergent thinking, and a willingness to take risks encourages people to grow. Thinking small keeps us small.

When we stay in the box, risk-taking, growth, and challenging the status quo all feel much scarier. To become an effective leader , valuable employee, or team member, think outside the box.

Let’s explore how we can use these tips to foster creativity at work and everywhere else.

  • Do a brain dump
  • Widen your scope of relevance
  • Box yourself in with a timer 
  • Work backward from the goal
  • Ask someone outside your field
  • Ask a child
  • Problem solve for someone else
  • Brainstorm with colleagues

1. Do a brain dump

Brain dumping helps you get ideas out of your head and onto a paper to provide clarity and jumpstart the thinking process.

You write down your thoughts as quickly as they come without worrying about grammar or making any sense at all. This forces you to focus on what matters most: getting those thoughts out of your head and onto paper (or word processor!).

It helps you pen down ideas that you may discard as ridiculous if you paused to think about them. You'll be able to organize and evaluate all these ideas later to come up with a good solution. 

2. Broaden your scope of relevance

When you're trying to solve a problem, it can be tempting to stick to facts that are directly relevant to the particular problem. But that’s not enough. Sticking to a narrow view of relevance prevents you from seeing opportunities that may be right in front of you. 

Rather than being closed-minded, you should be open to new ideas and perspectives. The first step is getting used to thinking about things that are outside your comfort zone .

A simple example. Let’s say you need to sharpen a pencil but the pencil sharpener is broken. If you limit yourself to thinking about fixing the sharpener that may take too long. But when you broaden your scope of relevance, you go from looking for a sharpener to looking for a sharp object. Only then do you pay attention to the scissors, knife, or other household objects that can be used as a sharpener in a pinch.


3. Box yourself in with a timer 

Does your brain move into creative overdrive to beat approaching deadlines? This might be the perfect technique for you.

When faced with a challenging problem, set an arbitrary deadline for yourself. Next, find someone (or something) to hold you accountable. You may ask a friend or colleague, or wager some money for challenges that will take days to months. You could set a timer on your phone for smaller problems.

4. Work backward from the goal

Working backward from the goal allows you to focus more on the outcome than the process. As such, you give yourself room to get creative with the process.

You’ll be able to design key milestones that you can focus on separately as well. This allows you to break the problem down into tiny solvable bits.

Write down the outcome on a pad or piece of paper. Then write the milestones you need to reach to achieve that goal . Keep breaking the milestones down until there’s just one task available per milestone.

5. Ask someone outside your field

One of the biggest reasons for boxed-in thinking is because you’re too close to the rules to see anything else. Ask someone who doesn’t know the rules of your industry what they would do to solve the problem. You’ll get some new perspectives you’d never see on your own.

You could ask your parent, spouse, friend, or even a stranger on the street. You could also ask the end users of your product or service. For example, if you're designing a new software system, the people who will use it will have some of the best ideas. If you're designing a new business process, collaborate cross-functionally. Go to the people who are doing the work of designing or promoting your project and ask them what they think. 

6. Ask a child

Children have an uncorrupted view of the world and how things work. To them, everything is possible. If you talk to a child about your problem, they’ll likely share ideas you’d never come up with on your own.

Maybe some of those ideas will be over the top or involve copious amounts of sugar. Nevertheless, talking to children may be some of the most creative brainstorming you can do. 


7. Problem solve for someone else

Solving (or attempting to solve) other people’s problems can help you come up with ideas to resolve your own. You exercise your brain without pressure and get a thrill from problem-solving. That thrill should keep your brain in heightened problem-solving mode.

If the problem is close enough to your own, you might find patterns you can use for yourself.

8. Brainstorm with colleagues

Brainstorming with colleagues can be a great way to spark creativity. Gather colleagues in your office, an empty conference room, or on a Zoom call and brainstorm together. 

Summarize the problem, give people 10 to 15 minutes to think, then allow everyone to share their ideas in turns. The aim is to come up with as many possible solutions — even the ones that seem unlikely. Unlikely approaches to challenges often yield innovative ways of solving them.

Whatever you do, think twice: First in the box, then outside the box

Because outside-the-box thinking often breaks the rules and may sound ridiculous, embracing it can be hard. The first person who pitched the idea of a wheel in prehistoric times probably got some strange looks.

What about Thomas Edison? Light bulb? No way! But without thinking outside the box, these people wouldn’t have changed the world in the way they did.

What’s more? Creativity, achieved through outside-the-box thinking, is a characteristic of good leaders . The values and traits that leaders display tend to have a way of embedding themselves into team culture. In other words, when you demonstrate a willingness to think out of the box, your team will feel inspired and empowered to do the same.

Master the established rules of your craft. Apply them and if they’re not yielding results, permit yourself to start thinking outside the box. You’ll be glad you did.

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Allaya Cooks-Campbell

With over 15 years of content experience, Allaya Cooks Campbell has written for outlets such as ScaryMommy, HRzone, and HuffPost. She holds a B.A. in Psychology and is a certified yoga instructor as well as a certified Integrative Wellness & Life Coach. Allaya is passionate about whole-person wellness, yoga, and mental health.

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Holly White Ph.D.

The Truth About the "Box" in Outside-the-Box Thinking

Unlock your creative mind and unleash your imagination..

Posted June 6, 2020

Holly White

Innovation consultants advise their clients to “Think outside the box” to boost creativity and adaptability. So, what is this box, and how does one think outside it?

Originally, the box was a reference to the nine-dot problem. The goal of this classic puzzle is simple; Connect all the dots in a 9-dot array using no more than four straight lines and without lifting your pen or pencil from the page. Sound easy? Click here to try the puzzle before you read further.

If this puzzle has you stumped, you’re not alone. The nine equally spaced dots give the impression of a square or box. Without realizing it, you may assume that the lines must be drawn within the boundaries of the dots. To solve the puzzle, you must let go of that assumption—you must think outside the box! In the correct solutions, the lines always extend outside of the square.

In a figurative sense, the "box" is a metaphor for an unnecessary assumption, constraint, or precedent which limits creative problem-solving. Like a literal box, an inflexible representation is restrictive and confining. To overcome this impasse to creative problem solving, it may help to change perspectives, question rules (or assumptions), and try different approaches. In other words, "think outside the box." That may sound intuitive; why do we even need a reminder to think more flexibly?

Shortcuts and Sticky Boxes

For starters, we’re not computers; we take mental shortcuts. We rely on life experience and context to make educated guesses when faced with ambiguous or partial information. In the nine-dot problem, we instantly recognize the pattern of a square, despite the missing lines.

We opt for shortcuts when we have limited time, information, or computational resources; in other words, because we have no alternative. But we also cut corners out of habit. In the words of psychologist Susan Fiske, we are cognitive misers —we spend as little of our cognitive resources as possible.

So, although we quickly interpret situations quickly, we rarely critique the validity of these first impressions. As a result, we may find ourselves confined by our own false assumptions—stuck in the proverbial box. By sticking to what’s allowable, believable, correct, or even possible, we constrain our imagination .

Thinking Outside-the-Box

Innovative thinking emphasizes change. Taking different perspectives, questioning the status quo, thinking unconventionally— these all involve breaking from the norm.

By definition, this sort of thinking is more original. An open and flexible mind also allows one to adapt more easily to unexpected and unprecedented situations.

And best of all, you don’t have to be an innovator or entrepreneur to think outside the box. By embracing little changes, you’ll automatically become more flexible. Here are a couple of simple exercises to stretch your creative muscles in everyday life.

Question assumptions

In the nine-dot problem, you might have limited yourself to solving the puzzle in a certain way because that’s what you thought you were supposed to do. Our assumptions are like internal rules running in the background, outside our awareness, but they are visible in our behavior. Here’s a simple 3-step technique for identifying and breaking your own (imaginary) rules:

  • Describe behavior
  • Identify assumption

Let’s apply this to the nine-dot problem as an example:

  • Behavior: Attempting to connect the dots in a square pattern.
  • Assumption: The solution looks like a square (or must stay inside the dots).
  • Break rule: Draw something that doesn’t look like a square (or draw outside the dots).

Now let’s try an everyday situation. Imagine you’re trying to fit all your utensils in a drawer and the oddly shaped ones won’t fit.

  • You are trying to get all the utensils in the drawer (behavior).
  • Utensils belong in a drawer (assumption).
  • Utensils don’t have to go in a drawer.

By chucking the unnecessary assumption, you shift your perspective and open yourself to alternative solutions. If you don’t put all the utensils in a drawer, where might you put them instead? Maybe the tall ones could be placed in a funky metal vase… or a glass jar, fun pottery, or sleek organizer. You could hang them from hooks on a rustic wood plank that complements your lake cabin kitchen, etc. Once free of your self-imposed rules, you can creatively improvise.

essay on thinking out of the box

Break everyday boxes

We are creatures of habit. Think about the things you do on a daily basis (parking, loading the dishwasher, grocery shopping), and ask yourself why you do them that way. Many times the answer is "habit."

Make it a point to try something new or do something differently. Spread a blanket on the living room floor and have a picnic. Swap your desk chair for a stability ball. Take a bath instead of a shower. Take a different jogging path, try a different grocery store, or sample a book from a new genre. Breaking everyday boxes will keep your mind flexible.

Shake it up!

Multi-tasking is a great way to stay flexible. If you’re working at home, take a break from the computer to do laundry. If you have multiple projects, create sub- goals and rotate between tasks. Take a 10-minute walk. Shifting mental gears will refresh your cognitive settings and prevent you from getting stuck in a rut. Set a smartwatch or phone reminder to get moving, take a break, or switch it up. Change can spark creativity!

Holly White Ph.D.

Holly White, Ph.D., is an independent research scientist, consultant, and author who specializes in ADHD, creative cognition, and neurodiversity.

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Thinking outside the box: 11 tips on shifting perspectives.

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Thinking outside the box is more than just a business cliché. It means approaching problems in innovative ways, conceptualizing problems differently, and understanding your position in relation to any particular situation. Ironically, it is a cliché that means to think of clichéd situations in other ways.

We’re told to “think outside the box” all the time, but how exactly do we do that? How do we develop the ability to confront problems in ways other than the ways we normally confront problems? How do we cultivate the ability to look at things differently from the way we typically look at things?

Thinking outside the box starts well before we’re “boxed in” – that is, well before we confront a unique situation and start forcing it into a familiar “box” that we already know how to deal with. Or at least think we know how to deal with.

Make an effort to push your thinking beyond its limit every now and again – the talents you develop may come in handy the next time you face a situation that “everybody knows” how to solve.

11 Ways to Think Out of the Box

Here’re the tips on how to think out of the box:

1. Think Outside the Box by Studying Another Industry

I’ve learned as much about teaching from learning about marketing as I have from studying pedagogy – maybe more. Go to the library and pick up a trade magazine in an industry other than your own, or grab a few books from the library, and learn about how things are done in other industries.

You might find that many of the problems people in other industries face are similar to the problems in your own, but that they’ve developed really quite different ways of dealing with them. Or you might well find new linkages between your own industry and the new one, linkages that might well be the basis of innovative partnerships in the future.

2. Learn About Another Religion

Religion is how humans organize and understand their relationships not only with the supernatural or divine but with each other. Learning about these relationships can teach you a lot about how people relate to one another and the world around them.

Observing the beliefs of another religion can also help you develop mental flexibility. When you really look at all the different ways people comprehend the same mysteries, this experience can be very eye-opening and can help you start to see the limitations of whatever dogma or doxy you follow. It’s a revelation that will transfer quite a bit into the non-religious parts of your life.

3. Take a Class

Learning a new topic will not only teach you a new set of facts and figures, but it will also teach you a new way of making sense of aspects in your everyday life or of the society or natural world you live in. This in turn will help expand both how you look at problems and the breadth of possible solutions you can come up with.

Here’s a list of the 29 Best Online Learning Platforms to Try.

4. Read a Novel In An Unfamiliar Genre

Reading is one of the great mental stimulators in our society, but it’s easy to get into a rut. Try reading something you’d never have touched otherwise – if you read literary fiction, try a mystery or science fiction novel. If you read a lot of hard-boiled detective novels, try romance.

Pay attention not only to the story but to the particular problems the author has to deal with. For instance, how does the fantasy author bypass your normal skepticism about magic and pull you into their story? Try to connect those problems to problems you face in your own field.

5. Write a Poem

Problem-solving occurs heavily on our brain’s frontal lobe and is responsible for our higher cognitive skills including thinking, planning, and problem-solving. [1] . Poetry neatly bridges our more rational left-brain thought processes and our more creative right-brain processes. Though it may feel foolish (and getting comfortable with feeling foolish might be another way to think outside the box), try writing a poem about the problem you’re working on.

Your poem doesn’t necessarily have to propose a solution – the idea is to shift your thinking away from your brain’s logic centers and into a more creative part of the brain, where it can be mulled over in a non-rational way. Remember, nobody has to ever see your poem.

6. Draw a Picture

Sometimes thinking outside the box means going back to the things we used to do all the time as a child. Drawing a picture is even more right-brained, and can help break your logical left-brain’s hold on a problem the same way a poem can. Also, visualizing a problem engages other modes of thinking that we don’t normally use, bringing you another creative boost .

7. Turn It Upside Down

Turning something upside-down, whether physically by flipping a piece of paper around or metaphorically by re-imagining it can help you see patterns that wouldn’t otherwise be apparent.

The brain has a bunch of pattern-making habits that often obscure other, more subtle patterns at work; changing the orientation of things can hide the more obvious patterns and make other patterns emerge. For example, you might ask what a problem would look like if the least important outcome were the most important, and how you’d then try to solve it.

8. Work Backwards

Just like turning a thing upside down, working backward breaks the brain’s normal conception of causality. This is the key to backward planning, for example, where you start with a goal and think back through the steps needed to reach it until you get to where you are right now.

9. Ask a Child for Advice

I don’t buy into the notion that children are inherently more creative before society “ruins” them, but I do know that children think and speak with ignorance of convention which is often helpful.

Ask a child how they might tackle a problem, or if you don’t have a child around think about how you might reformulate a problem so that a child could understand it if one was available. Don’t run out and build a boat made out of cookies because a child told you to, though – the idea isn’t to do what the child says, necessarily, but to jog your own thinking into a more unconventional path.

10. Invite Randomness

If you’ve ever seen a video of Jackson Pollock painting , you have seen a masterful painter consciously inviting randomness into his work. Pollock exercises a great deal of control over his brushes and paddles, in the service of capturing the stray drips and splashes of paint that make up his work.

Embracing mistakes and incorporating them into your projects, developing strategies that allow for random input, working amid chaotic juxtapositions of sound and form – all of these can help to move beyond everyday patterns and think outside the box.

11. Take a Shower

There’s some weird link between showering and creativity . Who knows why although science says it’s the flow of dopamine when we’re relaxed. [2]  But a lot of people swear by it. So maybe when the status quo response to some circumstance just isn’t working, try taking a shower and see if something remarkable doesn’t occur to you!

Think out of the box – This is a statement that has been overused by millions of people across the world. Thinking outside the box is not easy because we are creatures of habit. We enjoy staying in our comfort zones.

To think out of the box might mean giving up our beliefs and increasing our chances of failure and rejection. However, when you start thinking differently, you’ll grow on a business and personal level.

If you’ve been struggling to stay ahead of the crowd, using the tips that we’ve shared here will help you achieve your goals easily. And live happily. Don’t hesitate to seek help when you need it. You’ll be amazed at the number of people who are willing to help you grow and prosper.

Featured photo credit: jose aljovin via

[2]^ Why We Have Our Best Ideas in the Shower: The Science of Creativity

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Think Outside The Box

Meanings of “think outside the box”, origin of “think outside the box”, examples in literature.

“To think outside of the box you must be outside of the box Catching the spectrum of rainbows Receiving the energy flowing around Mining the space before matter arrives To think outside of the box you must be outside of the box Paint brushes to apply ideas Ushering in light beams of meaning Looking for symbols of information To think outside of the box you must be outside of the box.”

This stanza explains the literal meanings of the phrase by providing logical examples. She starts by saying that if someone intends to think differently, he should bring positive changes in his thinking. These positive vibes will help him discover the new meanings of the subjects he sees in the world around him. On a deeper level, if someone wants to enjoy the multiplicity of the subjects around, he must be able to think outside the box. The phrase, though, used as a reference, also demonstrates its effectiveness when used as a repetition .

Take your place upon your throne Enjoy the ride Cut through the tape If you’re so longing to escape? See the bigger picture Money don’t make ya richer! Be chilled instead of **** Only true love, will make you richer It is on the outside of the box.

These lines use the phrase as a metaphor for a happy life. The speaker urges us to enjoy our life by looking at different perspectives. People nowadays try to find solace and comfort in worldly pursuits and money. However, the speaker states that money does not bring any color or happiness in our life. It is only true love that provides us with comfort, we, as human beings, long for. Unfortunately, only a few people understand this philosophy of life. Therefore, the singer states that if we want to enjoy the ride of life, we need to think outside the box. The phrase has been given in the last line to show its use as a metaphor for life.

Written by Karma Wilson, the book, Outside the Box, is a treat for readers of all ages. The writer has beautifully presented before us a perfect blend of happiness, sorrow, and surprise in the form of this work. This book provides delight and entertainment to both; parents and children. Each and every poetic piece provides them a chance to look at the bigger picture of the things; it enables them to think about the different shades of meanings. The phrase shows its meanings clearly when used as the title of the book.

Bruce Walker, an American physician, and writer, attempts to explain the true meanings of the phrase. The text revolves around tips and encouragement; the writer suggests to us how to apply creative thinking to our daily life. He addresses the misconception people to follow that only writers, artists, physicians, businessmen, and other trained persons could have different and creative approaches in life. To him, every individual is unique, creative, and innovative. We only need to learn how we can stimulate our unused creative abilities to life.

Examples in Sentences

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Thinking Outside the Box by Kendra

Kendraof Waseca's entry into Varsity Tutor's October 2018 scholarship contest

Thinking Outside the Box by Kendra - October 2018 Scholarship Essay

“Think outside the box”. Many have heard this saying before. This saying is usually used to stimulate creativity. What does it mean though? It is more than just sitting on the outside of a cardboard box while you think. To think outside of the box means that you don’t use commonly used ideas and it also is a challenge to think creatively.

To begin, thinking outside of the box means the ideas are not trendy or common. Let’s say that you were in a science class and there was an experiment project assigned. The assignment required the students to make their own original scientific study. The popular idea of an experiment today is making a baking soda volcano or making slime. However, that is not totally out of the box unless the student puts their own personal twist on it. They are not out of the box because they are widely known as a typical science project. If the project was made personal, like something the person uses on a daily basis, that would be “out of the box” compared to others. Common ideas even were out of the box once before they became popular. To be unique from everything else is to be outside of the box.

To continue, thinking outside of the box can also be viewed as a challenge to be creative. This may be uncomfortable to do because it is easier to just do what is orthodox. Creativity is to come up with new ideas, which can help when solving problems. One example of exercising thinking outside of the box is the growing craze, the escape room games. The trapped participants have to have an open mind on how to obtain the keys and codes to escape. Since the keys are meant to be hard to get, they have to look every place imaginable and unimaginable. Escape rooms help broaden the creative mind, which is what outside of the box should do. Thinking outside of the box is a calling to think creatively.

As you can see, to think outside of the box means to go outside the traditional thought process of everyone else. It also is a chance to exercise creativity. Go outside of the box and be different.


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  • Essay on Women

Thinking Outside The Box Essays Example

Type of paper: Essay

Topic: Women , Feminism , Gender Equality , Women's Rights , Public , Boss , Interview , Thinking

Published: 01/04/2021


Gloria Steinem was born in 1934 and she has been an influential and successful feminist all her life. Her upbringing was such that both her mother and grandmother supported the right of women. In her interview with Eleanor Wachtel, she stated that she had no control over how the public perceived her and that it was a bit scary. She fought for the rights that she supported, for example, for the right to abortion, but she didn’t think much about how her thinking has defined her in the public eye. Gloria is an extraordinary woman and she always loved the places in the world where people are not judged too much. That is why she never liked Europe. However, she was in love with India and helped many women there by supporting their rights. Gloria learned about Hinduism when her mother took her to classes of theosophy which was a mixture of philosophy and theology. She developed an interest in India from an early age. Gloria also loved South Africa, but she chose to live in the U.S. because that was the place where she thought she would have most influence. Gloria has always been a beautiful woman and she was always looked through that lens. She also provoked the public by becoming an “undercover Playboy bunny” (Boss, 2015, p. 10). She wanted to show hoe the women who worked in Playboy clubs were degraded. Her mission was successful and she accomplished herself in investigative journalism. This was a good choice because she felt the way that those so-called “bunnies” were treated. It was her own experience and therefore most authentic. This exposure led to closing of those clubs. (Boss, 2015, p. 10). Beautiful women are always looked upon with prejudice, even when they get old. Gloria Steinem said that she thought that this treatment of her would stop when she turned sixty, but it didn’t. That is unjust. Gloria married at the age of 66, but her husband died soon after that. She never had children, but she had a step-son and an abortion in her twenties. Gloria supports the movement by her line of bracelets which are decorated with the sentence: “Imagine We Are Linked Not Ranked” ( That is a smart sentence which makes one think about helping other instead of competing with them. Feminism really is helping the world become a better place.

Boss, J. (2015). Think: Critical thinking and logic skills for everyday life (Third ed.). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill. Eleanor, W. (2015, March 8). Gloria Steinem Interview. In Writers & Company. Retrieved July 24, 2015, from ImagiNation Bracelets Designed by Gloria, Benefiting!. (n.d.). In Retrieved July 24, 2015, from


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Thinking Out of the Box: Creative Thinking

📄 Words: 312
📝 Subject:
📑 Pages: 1
✍️ Type: Essay

Innovation has long been in the avant-garde of progress in society. However, numerous cases exist when innovation is not supported or even suppressed. Writing a class essay provides a perfect example of such a case. Students primarily focus on acquiring knowledge during the learning process and are expected to follow specific rules while working with it. Consequently, the task of writing something unique and creative, complying with conventional rules simultaneously, requires profound “out of the box” thinking.

The main compatibility issue between something “conventional” and something “creative” lies in the source of creativity. According to Giovanni Corazza (TEDx Talks, 00:05:03 – 00:05:24), thinking out of the box requires irrelevant, redundant, or absurd features. Compared to creative writing, which can be polysemic, academic writing does not allow ambiguity and uncertainty (Smith, x). Consequently, to showcase innovation in the framework of academic writing, there is a need to look for gaps in the formality.

If a class assignment requires writing an essay on the topic of concerns about the future, one should first consider all “inside the box” features. Structure parameters, such as format, length, and style, should definitely remain unchanged. Since the primary purpose is to keep an essay acceptable, there is no way around these conventions. The same applies to the formal language and overall sentence and paragraph structure. However, the provided topic does allow some freedom – it asks for personal concerns, which implies only a few limits. The advantage creativity has over formality is that formality typically provides a template to be followed. In the meantime, inside the template can be practically anything that can be reasonably proved or at least adequately supported by evidence. Consequently, an essay concerning the anxiety due to the possibility of a favorite yogurt being eaten by a grandmother, supported by scholarly articles about anxiety disorders and generational differences in value systems, might actually work.

Works Cited

“Creative thinking – how to get out of the box and generate ideas: Giovanni Corazza at TEDxRoma.” YouTube , uploaded by TEDx Talks, 2014. Web.

Smith, Hazel. The writing experiment: strategies for innovative creative writing . Routledge, 2020.

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Example Of Essay On Thinking Outside The Box

Type of paper: Essay

Topic: Training , Company , United States , Teenagers , Youth , Employee , Workplace , Human Resource Management

Published: 2020/12/12

1. What external factors were affecting UPS’s HR practices? How did UPS respond to these trends? The external factors that were affecting the HR practices at UPS are related to a huge number of estimated retirements for the company’s delivery drivers. The massive number of retirees has led UPS to guarantee that as soon as the old employees retire, there will be new drivers to meet the customers’ demands. And because young people are considered to be excellent in hands on training and technology, the company developed various simulations as well as videogames to facilitate the training. 2. Why is efficiency and safety so important to UPS? What role do the company’s industrial engineers play in how employees do their work? The primary focus of UPS is to deliver products to customers with accuracy, speed, and safety. Due to the strong competition in the market including DHL, Federal Express, and U.S. Postal Service, the company should retain their services at low costs and ensure greater customer satisfaction. The company’s industrial engineers created more efficient directions, unloading and loading procedures, and worker regulations to aid in maximizing workers in the field. 3. What changes did the company make to its driver training program? What do you think of these changes? The company restored its training program by making it more available to the manner of thinking of young employees. By making the program a lot more innovative and incorporating videogames, this shifted UPS to a new period of interactive learning. These changes enable the company to be on track. Moreover, these changes will enable UPS to go on generating profit in the marketplace. 4. What advantages and drawbacks do you see to this training approach for the trainee? the company? For the trainees, the advantages of the training include its more interactive and fast paced approach. In addition, the training is easy to understand. The drawbacks include inability of the young applicants to familiarize oneself with the new technology. Furthermore, because training is more interactive, other young trainees might not take the training seriously. For the company, the advantages of the training include cost-effectiveness, great way to witness trainees in actual training, and capacity to respond to possible hazards. The drawback includes the possibility of being a victim of hacking. Source

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'The inning's never over': Two-out runs vital in Reds' streak

Mark Sheldon

Mark Sheldon

Jordan Bastian

Jordan Bastian

CINCINNATI -- Reds rookie Blake Dunn bolted out of the batter’s box in the fifth inning on Friday night and was not only thinking about collecting his first Major League hit. Dunn was thinking double.

“I was hustling hard,” Dunn told reporters. “And when I turned around [first] base and I picked my head up, I was able to see that they had just kind of gotten to it. So, I put my head down and went into second base hard.”

It was not only a personal moment that Dunn will not soon forget, but his first career hit fell in line with a recent theme for the streaking Reds. His double sparked a two-out rally in a 3-2 win over the Cubs at Great American Ball Park, giving Cincinnati a six-game winning streak that moved the team into a tie with Chicago for second in the National League Central .

All three runs that the Reds scored on Friday night came with two outs, making it 32 two-out runs scored (out of 45 runs total) during the winning streak. The Reds have also scored 135 runs with two outs this season, marking the second-most in the Majors at the time their win was sealed.

“It’s not like a concerted effort to only try to score with two outs,” Reds manager David Bell told reporters. “But it does speak to the inning’s never over, the game’s never over. You just keep playing the game. It’s one pitch at a time. You get one hit, you can run the bases, you might be able to get into scoring position. Just getting on base any way we can and keep creating the opportunities.”

The Reds had few chances early on against Cubs left-hander Justin Steele.

Steele retired his first 10 batters in a row before Elly De La Cruz's walk gave Cincinnati its first baserunner. With two outs in the fourth and Spencer Steer batting, De La Cruz bolted as Steele made a pickoff attempt. The throw to second was not in time as De La Cruz swiped his 33rd base of the season.

“We had a play to make to get him out,” Cubs manager Craig Counsell said. “We got a pickoff and have to be perfect with him. And the throw was not good enough to get the out.”

Later in the fourth, the Reds caught another break when Steer struck out swinging on a 2-2 slider that skipped under the glove of catcher Miguel Amaya and rolled deep into foul territory. Steer was able to reach first on the play, putting runners on the corners with two outs for Tyler Stephenson .

essay on thinking out of the box

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Stephenson received one of Steele’s signature sliders -- this one middle-in -- and the Reds' catcher ripped it into the left-field corner to give the Reds a 2-0 advantage.

“I feel like the past week or so, there's been some huge two-out hits,” Stephenson told reporters. “I feel like those can kind of make or break a game, so every single one you get is huge. It's been great to see some of those go through.”

On a night that Steele -- a NL Cy Young contender last season -- was pitching well for the Cubs, those two-out hits proved huge. They also went a long way in backing a solid outing by Cincinnati lefty Nick Lodolo , who limited the Cubs to one solo homer by Dansby Swanson in his six innings of work.

The two-out magic continued in the fifth after Steele retired TJ Friedl and Santiago Espinal via groundouts. That set things up for Dunn, who was playing in his fourth career game for the Reds.

Dunn, the Reds’ No. 11 prospect , saw a first-pitch four-seamer from Steele and sent the offering back up the middle for a sure single. The fleet-footed rookie read where the ball bounced between Chicago’s outfielders and turned on the burners. Dunn hit a Sprint Speed of 29.1 feet/second, per Statcast, and slid into second ahead of an off-target throw.

essay on thinking out of the box

Stuart Fairchild brought Dunn home with a single up the middle, continuing the Reds’ two-out success. That run proved to be the difference in helping Cincinnati pull off its 11th win in 14 games amid a climb back into the NL Wild Card picture.

“Not much has changed inside the locker room, honestly,” Lodolo told reporters. “The one thing is, with two outs, we’re getting those hits right now. And as a unit -- starters to the bullpen -- we’re throwing the ball well.”


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  14. Thinking Outside the Box by Kendra

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  15. 12 Tips for Thinking Out of the Box in the Workplace

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