Water dragon2012 is the year of the Water Dragon–so this is an ESPECIALLY lucky, creative, and powerful year for anyone born in a water dragon year– like me! Today FEB 4 is– according to some calculations of the Chinese astrological year–the first day of the year of the WATER DRAGON!  Read and enjoy.

Creativity in the year of the dragon | Bangkok Post: business/ * Published: 2/02/2012 at 12:00 AM

Kung Hai Fat Choy, Happy Chinese New Year! This is the Year of the Dragon, specifically the Water Dragon, and to my surprise and excitement, I discovered this: “Associated with thunder, lightning and arousal, the Water Dragon personifies creativity at its best.” What inspiration can we get from the dragon to help us flourish and succeed this year and beyond?

 Create a dragon

Dragons exist, don’t they? Dragons are unique among the animals of the Chinese Zodiac in that they exist only in myth, whereas the others are real animals. And isn’t it interesting that dragons exist in the myths of so many cultures, in China and East Asia, India, the Middle East, Northern Europe, America and Australia? What accounts for this near-universal myth?

Nowadays, dragons abound. They feature prominently in popular culture such as the Harry Potter books and Avatar, they watch over us from the roofs of Chinese temples and are commonly depicted in tattoos. The poet Wallace Stevens said: “The imagination is man’s power over nature.” Dragons may not exist in flesh and blood, but they live in the fantasies of people around the world. Turning imagination into reality is the core of creativity and innovation. After all, every great innovation started as a bold idea, a surreal fantasy or an impossible imagined future.

Inspiration: “All men who have achieved great things have been great dreamers”, said Orison Swett Marden, the founder of Success magazine. Use the creative power of the Year of the Dragon to dream and imagine. Then take action on your ideas and “create a dragon”. What fantasy do you want to start making real in 2012? What idea can you make tangible? What new product should you bring to life? What meaning can you create this year? What new service would make your customers happy? What should you create in 2012 that you’ve been putting off?

Nurture a dragon

Chinese dynasties claimed descent from dragons. As symbols of power and luck, dragons were used throughout the imperial palace. They were on the throne and on the Emperor’s robe to impress imperial might on every visitor.

Inspiration: Successful companies are built on “dragons”, on core capabilities that let them prevail over their competitors. Be like the Chinese emperors, and recognise and give thanks to your dragons. Nurture them, for they are the source of your success. What are you better at than everyone else? What qualities have led to your success? How can you preserve and add to these qualities?

Face and slay a dragon

The American creativity coach Roger von Oech advises that in order to move forward we sometimes need to confront, and perhaps slay, a dragon. This dragon may be a long-held belief, an outdated but formerly successful idea, or a fear.

On old maps, unexplored territories were marked with dragons, which discouraged the adventurous. As always, most seafarers stayed in known waters, far from any possible dragon. But some, including Christopher Columbus, Vasco da Gama or Ferdinand Magellan, dared to sail into the unknown, and discovered new lands of treasure and opportunity. Like them, we may find opportunities only if we are willing to let go of old ideas and venture into the unknown.

Inspiration: “Every act of creation is first an act of destruction,” said Pablo Picasso. In this Year of the Water Dragon, challenge the things that have made you successful. See if they hold you back and prevent you from exploring new waters. Confront your fear of the new, and be prepared to slay the dragons of outmoded beliefs and ideas. Find your dragons to slay by asking what you should stop doing, what “beloved” product should be eliminated, what circumstances or people are in your way, and, most importantly, which of those spaces on the map, blank but for the dragons, should you go explore.

Ride a dragon

In the movie Avatar, each native of Pandora rides through the skies on a dragon that he or she has personally tamed. Thanks to modern technology, viewers are able to feel a little of what riding a dragon must be like.

Inspiration: “I always wanted to ride a dragon myself, so I decided to do this for a year in my imagination,” said the German author Cornelia Funke. In the Year of the Dragon, follow her example and indulge and train your imagination. Go ahead, be playful, and imagine yourself riding a dragon, but also spend time imagining future success. After all, as Muhammad Ali said: “The man who has no imagination has no wings.”