Mindfully being creative and innovative, disrupting ourselves from our own repeated past thinking

Surviving, not thriving.

Innovation and creativity are probably the two words that coincide with the most discussed word organisationally around the world today, disruption.

At Griffith Consulting, we look at disruption as a by-product of something much more fundamental and problematic for leaders and their organisations - the cost of not investing in innovating and creating the future potential of their most valuable assets – yes, their people.

Organisational learning is also a past habit, focusing on skills, but not upgrading the internal programs of their people. The inner software of the mindsets.

Each year we disrupt thousands of leaders from their habits, routines and thinking that prevent them from moving out of the mode of ‘surviving’ into leading and thriving. 


The greatest risk to the future success of any individual or organisation is letting the past dictate the future.

We wake each day and potentially have the energy and creativity to think 80,000 new thoughts, 20,000 new creative choices, but we don’t! We generally repeat the same thoughts, habits and ways of doing things that we did yesterday, the day before and the day before that. We are no longer creating, we are operating on past memory and unconsciously repeating the past.

That’s the challenge for every leader, entrepreneur and business owner; how to remain open and creative to disrupting themselves and their organisations.

Disruption has been a huge factor to so many businesses and organisation around the world. The ‘Kodak moment’ for most, was not even about being disrupted by another business, it’s about how do we disrupt our own business, which really is their people, their employees.

The strangest thing of all for Kodak was they invented the technology that disrupted themselves, they just didn’t believe in adopting it themselves because they were thinking with a past operating system of survival. They did not want to change the model of current success that was based on a past level of innovation. They did not want to disrupt their current success - survival mentality is more about stress. 

Their success, like most of us is based not on the future but in how things have been done. 

Leadership is continually challenging, or it is at least it is supposed to challenge the current way things are done, but of course it doesn’t. 

The ‘Leadership mindset’ in fact, is again mainly a management survival mindset, it is not focused on the future because the past hijacks the future. There are strategies and process’, but they are not challenging and encouraging growth of the internal mindset of changing thinking. 

Creativity and innovation is an inside game it’s the way people think, and the way people think is the way they have always thought, this is the challenge disrupting old habitual thinking. 

What is the greatest preventer of change – stress and being in the ‘survival mode’. This of course plays out in many ways.


When in survival mode the past and future captures the mindset so there is really never time to think creatively in the present because there is a feeling of pressure now, there feels to be no time to be creative.

This becomes another unconscious habit as to why we can’t change - “I don’t have enough time to think”. This can be eased with a regular routine of meditation and exercise. We are captured by survival which is a state of anxiety or pressure. Which, in fact is always worrying about what we have not done (past) or what we have to do (future), but not be in the present.

Thriving is knowing that you create your future by being fully present, by being creative, inspired energised and not stressed. We put aside time to innovate ourselves, create the routines that every day change our mindset, create a more ideal version of ourselves, our people and our business. 

Challenging new ideas is the incubation of innovation. Unconsciously rejecting new ideas or ways of thinking that challenge current thinking.

Stress causes the brain to be very hardwired so it’s not open to innovation and creative thinking. leaders become slightly irritated by thinking that may challenge or potentially disrupt current strategies. One of the main reasons leadership fails is that they surround themselves with people who support their current thinking rather than challenge them.

The real cost of not upgrading and supporting the development of more resilient mindsets 

is one of the most expensive unseen realities of non-change.

Let’s look at some of the statistics surrounding mental health and stress:

·         Stress is a significant cost to companies across the developed world: it’s estimated that in Australia, US, UK and Germany, $200-$300 billion a year is lost on: absenteeism, employee turnover, diminished productivity accidents, and medical, legal and insurance fees

·         The cost of absenteeism in Australia is estimated at $7 billion each year

·         The cost of presenteeism (not fully functioning at work because of medical conditions) is nearly four times more, estimated at almost $26 billion in 2005–06

·         Stress is now shown to be responsible for 80% of all diseases and illnesses

·         92% of serious work-related mental disorder claims were attributed to mental stress. (Safe Work Australia 2018)

·         73% of workers are stressed about work and stressed workers are 2½ times more likely to look for a new job in the next year than those who are not stressed.

·         85% of workers believed it was the employers’ responsibility to create an environment that addressed stress in the workplace.

·         Mental stress cases are on average costing three times the amount of other workers compensation. The average incurred cost per mental stress claim from 2017 – 2018 was approximately $345,000, whilst the average incurred cost of all claims in the same period was $111,000 – Comcare

·         Psychological claims continue to be problematic, accounting for only 12 per cent of cases, but 36 per cent of payouts. (As One Working Together: Promoting mental health and wellbeing at work, Comcare)

·         Early Intervention- specifically, early identification and facilitation access to quality mental health care – is associated with a 492% return on investment (calculated by comparing early intervention and treatment costs with subsequent reduction in absenteeism and improvement in work performance. (Whiteford, HA, Sheridan, J, Cleary, CM, & Hilton, MF 2005, ‘The workout comes research cost-benefit (WORC) project: The return on investmentfor facilitating help seeking behaviour’,Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, vol. 39 (Suppl.2), no. A37.)


Disrupting stress by implementing programs to develop resilience is the most important cost-effective investment leaders can make. It causes unleashing, not only creativity that leads to innovation, but preventing one of today’s most expensive organisational problems – STRESS - that leads to mental health issues of its leaders and employees.


For more information about this topic or to learn more about our individual and organisational programs please email administration@griffithconsulting.com today!


Author: Steve Griffith


Steve Griffith is the founder & CEO of Griffith Consulting.

Steve delivers thousands of leadership, resilience and meditation programs to individuals and organisations all around Australia each year.

For more information about Steve, please click here.





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