How Fear Can Spur Creativity

Staples caught up with organizational psychologist and bestselling author Adam Grant and learned about an alternative to fight-or-flight. Here’s his take on a third response to fear.


00:06 When I've studied fear I basically found

00:09 that most people think of the fight or flight response and so

00:12 you would either freeze or you would try to attack the thing

00:15 that you are afraid of. But I found in some of my research

00:17 that there's a third response to fear. You don't have to flee.

00:21 You don't have to attack you could actually say that's a

00:23 reason to create. And the kind of fear that leads people to be

00:27 creative is usually the fear that they didn't try and it's

00:31 pretty common for most of us when we Fast forward our careers

00:35 to look back and say you know, I don't want to be the person who

00:38 wondered what would have happened if I gave a new idea

00:40 shot. Whether that's starting a company as an entrepreneur

00:44 whether it's speaking up with a bold suggestion to my boss and

00:47 so I think when you do feel that fear you could say look. Yeah,

00:51 I'm afraid of looking stupid and it could be afraid of failing

00:55 but. It's even more powerful to remember that, you could

00:57 also be afraid of failing to try and that fear is what

01:00 often propels us to innovate.