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Everybody Can be Creative

Everybody Can be Creative

Help! I’m not Creative!

Yes, you say, it’s easy to say everybody can be creative, but what if you really don’t think you are? You don’t think you have bright ideas and hardly ever come up with something original. Let’s remind you that you have the potential to be creative and that it’s possible to learn creative skills.

What’s the right answer?

Emilé Chartier said,

‘Nothing is more dangerous than an idea when it’s the only one you have.’

If you want to be creative you have to get away from the ‘one right answer’. What do we normally do when we are stuck with a problem? Yes, we try to get it out of the way as soon as possible, so the first idea that pops up is usually the way we go – often with disastrous or, at least, unsatisfactory results. The first step towards developing your creativity is, therefore, to become more

AGILE, SMOOTH, FLUENT

This simply means that you have to look for alternatives in every situation before making a decision. Most of us were not encouraged to look for alternatives while still growing up, because it was expected of us to accept the answer, the one accepted way of doing things. Some responses we received as children (and repeat as parents!) sound something like this:

  • ‘because I say so’
  • ‘don’t talk back’
  • ‘you know how it’s done’
  • ‘just accept it. OK?’
  • ‘you are much too young to have an opinion’
  • ‘you always think you know better. Boy!’
  • ‘children should be seen, not heard’
  • ‘in my day…’

Sound familiar? These responses were designed to force us into accepting the ‘right’ way, the way it’s always been done, the way some grown-up once upon a time decided it should be done, to belittle our opinions – no wonder so many adults don’t believe they have one creative idea in their head.

A fluent thinker needs to ask questions like

  • What else will work?
  • What else is possible?
  • How do others fell about this?
  • Is this the only possibility?
  • What if?
  • Why not try it?

The truly creative person will not readily accept that there is only one way, that what worked in the past will necessarily work in the future. The keywords to remember are

  • ALTERNATIVES
  • VARIATION
  • QUANTITY
  • WHAT ELSE?

To get to the creative, breakthrough ideas you have to have LOTS OF IDEAS. Quantity counts. The reason most people don’t come up with anything new and fresh and astounding is because they have so few ideas, so few alternatives that the odds of hitting the big one is never very high. We need to improve the odds; we need to give ourselves a better chance of success.

There are numerous creative techniques that will assist you to generate large quantities of ideas in a relatively short time and we will share several with you in the book Creativity Uncovered. If you want to take your creativity to the next level, you can find this book in our shop.

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