Edward de Bono coined the term “lateral thinking” to describe a divergent approach to problem solving that pushes us beyond usual linear or logical thinking. An easy lateral thinking technique that works well for creative blocks is a random word technique in which you connect a random word (e.g., choosing a word at random from the dictionary, using Wikipedia’s article of the day) to your current problem or task. The point is to make it fit, even if it doesn’t seem to at first.

For today’s post, I found the word Kainotophobia at the Phrontistery‘s list of unusual words that start with K (warning: the site is addictive).

kainotophobia (also also cainotophobia): the fear of change or fear or newness

In learning more about this word, I found a good piece from the Jump! Foundation about dealing with cainotophobia by “introducing a little bit of new”:

Sometimes we just aren’t ready to overcome our Cainotophobia all at once. If this is the case you have two options: quit, or try. Sometimes it’s about accepting little bit of ‘new’ at a time. Perhaps it’s changing a small thing in your morning routine, like taking a different way to work, or trying a new type of coffee. Whatever it is, the more ‘new’ we experience the more ‘new’ we will be comfortable trying.

I truly appreciate how hard this can be and I have walked away from some potentially great experiences as a result of Cainotophobia. But if there’s anything I’ve learned, more often than not, ‘new’ is where the fun begins… Read more

Sometimes when we are in a creative or other kind of rut, trying a “little bit of new” is more effective than thinking we will effect change all at once.

At the very least, I learned a new word today.


KThis post is part of the April A to Z Blog Challenge. For more on my 2016 theme of Private Revolution, see A Is for Ambition. Click here to read all posts in the Private Revolution A to Z Challenge blog series.