Operating in an unstructured zone

Many of us tend to be very comfortable operating in a safe and secure structured zone. If we do not have one, some of us have the ability to create one for ourselves. How important is it? How can we tap into those who can operate in the unstructured space?

Learning maths, history and school subjects that align to a curriculum falls in the structured zone. Working at an office for a given set of responsibilities is operating in a structured zone. So, what is unstructured zone and what makes it unstructured?

Anything that requires creativity, needs you to think or analyze and choose to decide what you would do falls in the unstructured zone. One does not know how the next steps would pan out. The future is unknown, and neither can be planned. Best example would be when the pandemic took over early this year! None of us knew how to react to it! We knew what is the next step to take, but could not plan long-term! That is operating in an unstructured zone.

Naturally, who gets to be good at it?

In my experience, I have witnessed this trait excessively in four segments

  1. Children – Remove the devices from their hands, do not give them toys or anything specific. See their behavior patterns. They figure out ways to play, ways to engage themselves in activities that are beyond our understanding! They can make homes out of cardboard boxes, music out of utensils, can imagine eyes in their feet, can observe & learn faster than anyone else. No one needs to set a problem statement for them to work on. They have that ability to create a problem space in their mind and figure out solutions. Encouraging this habit in children goes a long way!
  2. Artists – One artist’s work is not the same as the other. Everyone tries to bring their creativity and style into their designs and art. Same pencils or brushes can provide a varied number of art forms. Who creates the standards? Who pushes the limits? Who decides what is the limit? the WOW factor becomes
  3. Parents who cook – I cannot say mothers or fathers here. Whichever parent handles the kitchen predominantly and tries to bring in an amazingly creative meal that is a feast to the eyes & appetite without sharing the struggles of what ingredients were there in the kitchen or not, work in this zone every day. Sometimes I have seen the pantry would be literally empty, and still the parent would try to whip up something amazing for the children and surprise guests who show up unannounced! The hospitality takes over and figuring out what to do when not-much is available requires a lot of creativity. Variety in every meal, every day is an art!
  4. Leaders – Be they leaders working in organizations, or thought leaders, or entrepreneurs, they have the ability to figure out the right next step amidst the chaos and have the ability to adapt and change course in an extremely effective manner! Larger leadership roles have an impact of doing this at the country level.

So, does one need to have that ability to survive? Not always. A percentage of population needs to have this skill to lead the world. It is a leadership trait. As long as one person sets the direction, the rest can take that road and follow through!

Those who regard obstructions as opportunities to think and act in a new way typically are seen to be good at it!

Try to observe those around you!

Are you looking to develop this trait? If yes, try this simple trick. Take a different route to work for a month! Do not repeat going on the same roads – observe the way your mind starts responding 🙂 Try it and share your views!

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