Why Not . . . Be Creative?
Wednesday March 21, 2012

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Creative types. You could probably name someone right now who you would describe as creative. Hopefully you are describing yourself, but if not, I’d like to convince you today that anyone can be creative. Yes, even you.

In a recent Wall Street Journal article titled “How to be Creative”, Jonah Lehrer explains that creativity isn’t some magical innate quality one is born with, but rather a skill that anyone can learn.

I highly suggest that you take a few minutes and read is article which incorporates recent studies on creativity. After having read it myself, I came up with a list of ways we can all help foster our creativity.

Here’s what I came up with:

1. Mingle with people from other professions, cultures, walks of life. By welcoming new ideas and perspectives into our thought-process we invite more chances for something to spark with what we already know, thus increasing the chance for creativity to ignite.

2. Allow yourself to unwind. Yes, initially it might sound counterproductive, but by allowing yourself to slow down, you allow your ideas to catch fire, to be noticed and give them a chance to be pounced upon.

3. Be dedicated. An artist, those creative types, as they are sometimes labeled, are people who work tirelessly on something without a lot of praise for quite some time. In other words they have a passion for what they are working on that isn’t driven by external praise. In fact, the praise, if they ever receive it, is the topping on top of a creamy, delicious cheesecake.

4. Get in tune with you gut/inner voice. By getting to know yourself, getting to know what your feelings mean, you will become more adept at understanding when you should relax to recharge or push through until you discover an aha moment.

5. Learn more. Become a devourer of the written word. Absorb as much information as possible. Never stop learning. Remain curious, constantly fueling your mind and giving energy and possibility to potential creative moments.

6. Seek “diverse experiences”. Follow Steve Jobs’ advice and constantly be seeking out adventures that are different, new or foreign to you. The information you collect at the time may not make sense, but in the future who knows what could happen.

7. Be willing to be the outsider. Why would anyone WANT to be an outsider, you may ask. Well, as Lehrer points out, when you are an outsider you become more observant and are willing to take more risks because you are either ignorant of the potential pitfalls or have less to lose.

8. Do what you love. It all comes back to following what you love to do, what you could lose time doing.

Always keep in mind, creativity is a choice. It is something that you can choose to be if you are passionate enough about what you want to achieve.

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7 thoughts on “Why Not . . . Be Creative?

  1. Shannon, thanks for sharing the Wall Street Journal article. Your follow-up inspires me to keep my feet moving in those things that I love to do, where creativeness will come in handy.

  2. Great post! I’ve always considered myself just not a creative person when it comes to certain things, but maybe I should change my thinking! 🙂

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