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How to Start Thinking Outside of the Box in the Workplace

The Huffington Post The Huffington Post 13/10/2015 Young Entrepreneur Council

2015-10-08-1444332400-253124-JoshYork.png © Provided by The Huffington Post 2015-10-08-1444332400-253124-JoshYork.png Josh York is the Founder and CEO of GYMGUYZ, an in-home, mobile personal training company headquartered in Plainview, New York. Since its inception in 2008, Josh has been valued for his hands-on leadership style growing the business and profitability to more than 1000 clients, 45 employees and a fleet of vans in less than six years.
Creative thinking is the lifeblood of any progressive and successful workplace. I've found success as the founder and CEO of an in-home personal training solution, but it took endless days, sleepless nights and creative thinking to reach this point. While thinking "outside of the box" can be difficult, there are three crucial pieces of advice that I revisit again and again.
Find a Mentor
The adage "Those who can, do; those who can't, teach," couldn't be further from the truth. Without the mentors and teachers in my life, I never would have been able to grow my business into a national franchise. Mentors are there to listen to you spitball your entrepreneurial pipe dreams, and help guide you with wisdom they've gained from along their own journeys. Most importantly, a mentor provides support and nurturing when it seems like the world is working against you.
You can find a mentor in a variety of ways, from seeking guidance from professionals in your industry to reaching out to an old friend. Upon finding a mentor, it is important to establish boundaries and goals so that both parties benefit from the partnership. A healthy mentor-protégé relationship is built on trust, mutual respect and open communication.
Give Your Brain a Rest
Being a self-motivated leader doesn't mean forgoing much-needed time to recharge both mentally and physically. While it's easy to fall into a rhythm of constant work, it's important to remain self-aware and know when to step away from a project. Just like any other muscle, your brain deserves a break after toiling away all day.
Avoid burnout by crafting a daily routine to unwind--and stick to it. Any activity, no matter how simple, that allows you to step away from work and recalibrate is ideal. For example, I'll occasionally close my office door, close my eyes and decompress for 20 minutes in the middle of the day. Going for a stroll, squeezing in a lunchtime workout and listening to music can be just as clarifying.
Believe in Your Ideas
The most important factor that transforms an idea into a reality is confidence. Sure, pulling a zany marketing stunt or sales epiphany out of left field is coupled with a surge of satisfaction, but without follow-through, it's just that -- an idea. Bringing those what-ifs to life takes a great deal of determination, which is a necessary quality in business leadership and in life. So jump the hurdles, sidestep the speed bumps and maintain drive toward your ultimate goal.
Having faith in your creative idea will encourage others to believe in it just as fervently and consequently encourage them to help you bring it to life. If you don't believe in your own ideas, they will inevitably fail. I believe the saying is "self-fulfilling prophecy." Prove to yourself that you can, indeed, bring your goals to fruition; show your colleagues that your ideas are worthwhile; maintain focus and realize excellence in the boardroom and in life.
Follow these tips and not only will you start thinking outside of the box, you'll create a box of your own.
 

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