“One of the key differences between innovation and adaptation is that innovation is voluntary. Adaptation is not.”  Carey Nieuwhof  https://tinyurl.com/ypjwrduk

During these past 18 months, we have all been forced to pivot.  Sometimes we have pivoted so much that we have perhaps become dizzy and weary.  I get it!  It has been overwhelming.  The learning curve has been steep.  Many have suffered from decision fatigue.  It has just been A LOT!

In all of this chaos, all of us want to come out the other side having grown in some way.  We want to have learned something new, had a new self-awareness, or perhaps developed a new healthier routine or habit.  All of us can likely point to some negative consequence of the pandemic, but we would rather raise up the silver lining instead.  I wonder if that silver lining could be becoming an innovator rather than an adaptor.

Often as comfort creatures, we don’t seek out change.  Change finds us.  For example, maybe we aren’t the first to adopt technology.  We only adopt technology when the technology on the product we have is no longer available, no longer supported, or the hardware it is installed on finally goes to hardware heaven.  Or maybe we put off trading in our cell phone because we don’t want to learn the new apps that come with the new phone.  We delay trading off our car because we know there will be a learning curve of programming that darn remote garage door opener, programming our home address into the GPS, how to use all those new buttons, and get used to how all the new stuff works. The comfort of the familiar feels good. It is soothing and relaxing.  It is like home base. It is our rut that keeps us grounded and safe.  But it also keeps us from progressing.

Innovation calls out into the wild frontier.  I like to think of it as having the same kind of spirit as the astronauts, Lewis & Clark, the first American settlers, the gold rushers, those who plunge to the depths of the sea to explore sea life, and those who climb Mount Everest.  Innovators seek transformation way before it becomes a necessity.  Innovators are dreamers not just for the sake of dreaming, but because they believe there is always something more we are called to do and to become.  Something we must do!  Innovators are not satisfied with the status quo.  Innovators have a deep-seeded drive and wiring to constantly create, invent, revolutionize, and create paths for a better tomorrow for their fellow humans.  Adapting gets us through today.  Innovation brings us better tomorrows.

“Creativity is thinking up new things. Innovation is doing new things. “

Theodore Levitt (1925 – 2006), Renown economist