Guided Improvisation is an Important Life and Professional Skill

I know what you must be thinking from just looking at the photo: “He’s literally making booze in a bath tub.” You’d be right – partially. In the photo, I’m cooling unfermented beer in a bath tub. How I got to that point exemplifies the creativity and guided improvisation needed to accomplish tasks.

So how did I get here? Well, I’m a homebrewer – have been for nearly a decade. While commercial brewing runs like a well-oiled machine with cutting edge technology and equipment, homebrewing lacks that level of sophistication. I’ve made some pretty tasty beers, but each time even the best-made plans have required some type of agility.

But what about the bathtub? Part of the process for making beer is cooling down the wort (unfermented beer) quickly. As a person who has never had access to garden hoses or faucets that accept that fitting, I’ve always relied on ice baths in sinks as opposed to wort chillers. Having recently moved to a new apartment, I didn’t realize my 10 gallon pot would not fit in my sink – where I’ve historically made ice baths. However, I do have a bath tub, and so it was.

What I’m trying to say is that limitations force creativity and guide improvised solutions. Our environments, professionally and personally, all have certain constraints to accomplishing tasks. The most successful of us can look around at the resources available to solve a given situation. Sometimes that’s leveraging existing executive visibility, sometimes that’s putting a pot of hot, sugary water in a bath tub.