Creativity catchphrase

None | ByRajgopal Nidamboor, Mumbai
Sep 30, 2005 05:12 PM IST

Creativity is all about blending the ideas that already exist, writes Rajgopal Nidamboor.

Creativity is the state, or quality, of being creative. It does not necessarily mean anything that is absolutely new. All you need to do is just think it through!

HT Image
HT Image

Creativity, in simple terms, is a process of finding new ways to combining old ideas - moulding, manoeuvring, and synthesising, them with purpose.

In other words, what you'd need to do to being creative is actually blend the ideas that already exist. Not merely copy, but tinker with them resolutely. This is, essentially, creativity by definition - a pursuit like no other!

A person who is creative always tends to think outside the box. She/he is open to the possibility of finding a better way to accomplishing a task, or thinking of a solution to a problem. Such a person will also believe that creativity is a process. A pathway to finding answers that can take a host of directions.

The important thing, however, is to be open, and find solutions when you least expect them.

A manager in a company, for instance, should never be surprised with events. She/he should be like the watchful umpire during the course of a one-day cricket match, and its pressure?cooker atmosphere - in control of the situation.

Now comes the big question. How can you cultivate and promote creativity in your life? There are no easy answers. But, the following points would be more than useful - to get started.

First, and foremost, you have to develop the ability of finding something valuable, or agreeable, when you are not even consciously looking for it. Because, when you are open?minded, you often make lucky discoveries. What's more, by developing your own creative powers, you can write your own creative "luck" too. Luck, which is nothing but possibility in origin.

You know it, don't you: that the greatest of inventions, and discoveries, have often been a result of accident? If Sir Isaac Newton and Sir Alexander Fleming, for example, had not been alert to possibility - the falling apple, and the spore of penicillinum notatum - their discoveries might have taken "ages" to attain their objective.

This is also one reason why most companies today are using a popular technique - brainstorming - to generating ideas and solutions in a group sitting. You'd do it too. Else, you'd do something on your own. But, you have to be gentle with yourself - because sparks of inspiration may last for a few seconds. So, always be prepared - whatever your occupation.

Carry a scribble pad. Also, make notes the moment you hit upon an idea.
Never postpone making notes for a "next" time. You may miss something vital.
Some of the best ideas/solutions may occur when you stop being "creative," by force. Reason: you can't compel yourself to being creative - always. So, relax, whenever possible.
Let ideas flow. Take a walk, meditate, listen to soft, soulful music - i.e., tune into sonic energy.
Allow your subconscious mind time to work on an idea/problem.
Believe in yourself.
Trust your creative instincts.

Most important: don't be preoccupied with the concept of creativity alone. When you hit upon an idea, just follow it through. Don't allow it to fade away. Why? Because, ideas, as you may know, need to be honed, fine?tuned, and perfected.

Handy Hints

Try to use your right-brain at imagining a whole concept (See Box, "Know Your Brain Type").
Use your left-brain to bring order and logic.
Another good idea - use soft, quiet music in the background.
Listening to good music, researchers emphasise, actually taps both sides, potentially uniting creative and analytical functions in the brain/mind. It also helps you to implement ideas better. This is not as difficult as you'd think. It's almost an automatic process - sort of!

The best part - it opens up possibilities for your creativity to flow. With good results! Right? Yes!

         Know Your Brain Type

      Right Brain "Register"

       Left Brain "Register"

• More visual: focus on images, or patterns

• More verbal: focus on words, symbols, and numbers

• Intuitive — keyed to feelings

• Analytical — keyed to logic

• Simultaneous processing of ideas

• Step-by-step, sequential processing of ideas

• Uses "mind pictures" to remember things — by writing things down, or illustrating them

Things are remembered by/through words, not so much by faces

• Uses lateral connections from information

• Uses logical deductions from information

• The "whole" is seen first, the details later

• The "whole" is looked into step-by-step, while focusing on details and organised information

• Organisation not the end result

• Organising things is mandatory

• Free association

• Making lists and planning vital

• Evaluates reason as to why one is doing things, or reasons why rules exist

• Follows rules without questioning them

• Lacks time sense

• Keeps track of time; good time sense

• Spelling and finding, or using, words, to express oneself not important

• Likes and easily memorises spelling, usage, grammar, and syntax, besides mathematical formulae

• Loves touching and feeling actual objects; is sensory-inclined

• Observation-oriented

• Prioritising difficult; is usually late, and impulsive

• Always plans ahead

• Has no time for reading brochures, or manuals — draws conclusions arbitrarily

• Reads instruction/service manuals before working, or drawing conclusions

• Does not listen to how something is said

• Always listens to what is said

• Speaks/talks with hand movements, or gestures

• Seldom uses gestures when speaking/talking

• Thinks that one is naturally creative, but would need to apply oneself to developing/improving one’s potential/talent

• Often holds the view that one may not always be creative. Is willing to try, learn, and also take risks to develop/improve upon one’s potential/talent



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