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Zen Mind, Beginner Mind

January 2009by Moshe Engelberg, Ph.D.


The new year gets us thinking of starting fresh. In "Zen Mind, Beginner Mind" respected Zen master Shunryu Suzuki puts forth the notion that we are always beginning, regardless of our expertise. So too in marketing. No matter how much we know, every new marketing situation benefits from "beginner" thinking, a fresh untainted approach that opens our creative problem solving to all possibilities.

Next time you're faced with a tough marketing challenge, try on a beginner's mind. Let go of what you know and ask yourself this paradoxical question (hey, zen is big on paradoxes!): If I knew nothing about this situation, and was just now exposed to it, what would I think? Without judgment, jot it down. As you work to solve the problem, you may find your "beginner" idea to be worth keeping. You may find your creative thinking is a little livelier and more open than usual.

Enjoy beginning, again and again. Happy, Healthy & Prosperous 2009.

Moshe Engelberg, Ph.D., M.P.H.
ResearchWorks, Inc.
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