Ever think about resetting whether it be personally or professionally? Most recently, I was reflecting on “creative destruction,” a term coined by economist Joseph Schumpeter in the mid -1900s, which according to Schumpeter is a “process of industrial mutation that incessantly revolutionizes the economic structure from within, incessantly destroying the old one, incessantly creating a new one.” In other words, you must “destroy” ideas, resources, structures, etc. to generate new ones. This concept has been widely used in business settings, but seldom have I read about it in social or personal ones.
So what and HOW do we destroy in our lives to start anew? A common grievance I hear is stifling work. Another one is lack of exercise. A personal one is not reading enough (or if you’re a podcast fan, not listening enough). Creative destruction hand-in-hand with goal setting, prioritization, and time management can be our key answer to pivoting to a whole new world.
Let’s consider an example: you have a 9–5 job and you want to incorporate more exercise in your week. Think about every activity you are doing outside of work (e.g. networking events, dinners, happy hours, etc.) and start to narrow down the activities you want to prioritize and the activities that you are willing to forego (or destroy) in order to exercise more. Every week may differ, and that is OKAY as long as you’re being consistent with that one goal you have in mind: exercising more. Simple, huh?
My high school track-and-field coach once told me that I had 24 hours in a day and that if I allocated just one hour every afternoon to running that I would improve my running time. Being outcome-driven is a big part of creative destruction and having a clear goal of what it is that you want to create is equally as important as knowing what you want to destroy.
As I reset (both personally and professionally), I encourage you, too, to be unafraid and authentic in your search for purpose, happiness, etc. I’ve recently read several posts on LinkedIn (here is one) that remind me that I must worry less about what people have to say, and more about what I actually want to do. In simpler terms, “you do you” and while you focus on yourself, exude confidence. Believe in yourself, and you’re half way there.