What does the expression “think outside the box” really mean?

The expression/metaphor “think outside the box”, thrown about so brazenly is predicated on the false, although, unspoken assumption that it [the box] exists; and that it is somewhere. But, ironically, no one knows for certain what that ‘box’ is and/or where it is except, again, for the general assumption that everybody knows what and possibly where the ‘box’ is.

However, the reality is that such ‘box’ doesn’t exist unless, of course, we assume and accept that it is simply an analogy to mean that each human being – each person – each of us, in essence, is a box. That the human mind [brain] in which the “thinking” is believed to take place is, so to speak, that ‘box‘.

Because by calling upon people, sometimes in a rather condescending manner, to ‘think outside the box’ implies that those who are making the call[s], know what and quite possibly where the ‘box’ is.

It also means, and it is evidently an indirect admission, that people live in [that] the ‘box’ and unless there’s national or worldwide campaign to call upon everybody to ‘think outside the [such] box’ – to make such call[s] to only one group of people, simply beats the logic and effort, because you will still have other people – possibly many – [thinking] inside the ‘box‘. You don’t want that and it is hardly flattering!

So, perhaps, the best and logical thing is to make it a [national/worldwide] policy to ensure that people – we all –  ‘think outside the box‘ by, foremost, agreeing on what and where that ‘box‘ is and then calling upon for the total collapsing and dismantling of that rather oppressive ‘box‘ so that no one is left thinking in[side] it.

That way, therefore, we will not have the need to worry anymore about people or anyone thinking inside the bloody box and the need to constantly call on people to ‘think outside‘ the bloody oppressive ‘box‘.

We might want to take a cue and perhaps a similar approach from the way the oppressive communist hegemonic ‘box‘ [was] collapsed and dismantled by, foremost, the destruction of the infamously famous imposing ‘Berlin Wall’ of oppression, and the subsequent domino effect on the collapse of the Soviet [Union] Empire. And how that defining turn of events, effectively cut Russia – then the communist Bulldog – to size by chopping to pieces what, until then, had no doubt been its vast and fierce power wings.

So, first, let us, collectively, agree on what and where that oppressive ‘box‘ is, second, charge towards it with the force and formation of a ruthless riot police towards a marauding group of protesters, collapse and dismantle it completely – get and free everyone out of it – from its tyranny; from the dictatorship of ‘thinking inside the box‘.

For, surely, it is a dictatorship of no less destructive magnitude and one that merits no less collective revulsion than the usual dictatorships, such as political and economic dictatorships we will risk our dear little lives in desperate attempts to resist and possibly defeat.

That is, and only if, it is of such great concern to us; and if not, then we should kindly stop applying and send the metaphor to the graveyard of such tired linguistic clichés. More so, because it is, to say the least, condescending and stupid on the part of those who so brazenly throw it about merely to sound ‘clever’ than others without realising they are, in reality, exposing their lack of critical thinking and analysis.

Besides, and let’s face it, to think differently, creatively and/or unconventionally while mired and stuck in the usual social framework, will most likely cause trouble to and alienate those, anyone, who dare[s] to do that which threatens the essence of social group[ing]s – control – which requires ‘group think’ as an essential unifying factor without which, controlling people without the threat and/or application of force, would be impossible and we would have no such thing as or discipline [science] of management.

You can only control and/or manage people, without resorting to force and violence, by ensuring they are all locked-in on a one dimension[al] and same thinking [mindset] pattern.