The Yes And Act Manifesto

A declaration how creativity can flourish.

Feel free to download the Manifesto & spread it into the world.

I’ve created this manifesto to help people cope with the waves of change that are happening. The world is changing faster and faster and it’s happening everywhere. How do you perceive these waves of change: Are you a shipwreck survivor on a raft or are you a surfer? A lot of people feel overwhelmed by the continuous waves of change and try to resist by sticking to their fixed thinking patterns. Or do you choose to become a ‘change’surfer and develop skills to transform problems into opportunities. The ‘Yes And Act’ manifesto is for the change-surfers among us. Use it as a source of inspiration when you want to take a next step in your own growth in your professional or personal life.

YES stands for positive thinking and suspending judgement. The self-full filling prophecy is working stronger than ever and if you limit your own thoughts then you’re creating your own limited reality. If you don’t believe 200% in your own ideas, why should anybody else believe in them? So dare to think big … no even bigger. Because if you shoot for the moon and you miss, you will still land among the stars

[Les Brown]. Avoid the trap of mediocrity – this is the situation where you want to go for your passion but some less desirable option comes along and you take it. Be positive and look how you can transform a problem into an opportunity. Sometimes, just looking at the same situation from a different perspective is already enough to establish a mindshift. Next to the big dreams, it’s important to suspend judgement about change. We – human beings – don’t like a lot of change and your mind will instantly come up with all kind of reasons why the status quo is better (like no time, no budget, too difficult). And if your mind doesn’t come up with these ideakillers then you can be sure that the people in your environment will bring them on.

AND means exploring different views and stimulating your imagination. It’s putting all the creativity methods to generate more ideas into action. Instead of experiencing the world from one point of view, explore different perspectives. Remember the quote that the interesting stuff is happening outside your comfortzone. Don’t allow yourself to be happy with the first solution that comes up but look for a second solution, and a third solution, … These alternatives will help you to make a better choice after you’ve suspended your judgement. Imagine how Steve Jobs, Ghandi, superman or a child of six would solve your challenge. Make a list of 100 what if … questions to broaden the scope of your question.

ACT is the most difficult part of the manifesto. It’s about getting into action and experiment a lot with different solutions. If you’re doing things in the domain of innovation and change, there’s no certainty. Nobody knows if a certain solution will work or not and there’s only one way to find out: do it. And you will come across a lot of nearlings (a nearling is a positive word for something new that was done with the right intentions, which has not – yet – led to the right result). And that’s totally normal that things won’t work from the first time. Do you know a child that learned to drive a bike without falling one time? No, having nearlings is inherent connected to change and innovation. Make sure that you can fail fast, often and forward. Have guts to experiment and remember that it’s easier to ask forgiveness than it’s to ask permission. Success in the long run is for the people who show up in the arena everyday. Those are the people who work very hard everyday and who try new things. And sometimes it works and other times, it doesn’t work but they learn something new every day. So step outside (your comfort zone) and experiment. Take a first small step to see if you’re going in the right direction.

The Yes And Act manifesto is the main message of Cyriel’s keynote 'the Change Mindset'.