Remember the time when your boss told you ‘this ain’t working, think out of the box ‘ or your teacher said ‘don’t copy-paste, write on your own ‘?That time you blame yourself for not being creative enough.
However, here we would see creativity as a gift, how to develop it and the fallacy associated with it. If anyhow you want to skip all these sections and jump to the fallacy of creativity, click here.
Identifying yourself as creative
Creativity is necessarily described as discovering new ideas, interpretations or solutions to a problem. That can be as simple as finding new ways to hold your pen or as complex as proving light wraps around mass and time (kudos Mr Einstein and his General relativity’). A brilliant company that came into existence through a stupid idea or a new genre of art that had been discarded in the past.
Nevertheless while identifying as creative individuals, we tend to look at the tiny set of super successful – talented – with groundbreaking discoveries. And then conclude ourselves to be non-creative.
But everyone is sort of creative even if they don’t realise it. Have found new ways to hide chits in exams, memorizing data? Students are the most creative during exams!
Creativity is most of the time rewarding, if successful. Like new ways to woo your partner or at a larger scale a piece of art or scientific discovery or a tech innovation make the creator immortal. However, those people are god gifted and one must not compare themselves with them. Though some are way more creative than others as they acquired it naturally but creativity can be taught and learned.
Creative people’s personalities
We see creative people across all fields and when their personalities are studied, we find familiarities that are noted below:
- They have a poor sense of discipline. They work tirelessly at a job, and when it’s complete they are not to be found anywhere.
- Creative ones have charismatic energy and motivation towards their work that keeps them engaged until the work gets completed.
- They are not afraid to dive deep into the materials. And give a max of input at a given time.
- Risk-taking abilities are one, the rewarding as well as punishing. If an idea pays, one can earn millions and if not, one is left broken.
- Creative people are playful and disciplined, or responsible and also irresponsible.
- They are very passionate about their work and they are very objective about it. These make working with them difficult.
- Having dual personalities, they are difficult to predict.
- They are very observant and gifted with quick learning abilities. They learn from others by just observing them.
Creativity can add species to your work. So here are some steps to be more creative:
- Quality output: Creative people produce the best output from the available time and resources.
- Diving deeper: People of the given type are often found in learning, deep introspection and solitude states.
- Be open to new experiences whether it is a new culture, people, foods, cuisines, opinions or ideas. Creative thinking is also a result of one’s experiences.
- Procrastination is not a term that one should idealise but creative people are often found to procrastinate as they don’t find further inspiration for their jobs.
- Remember to record what you think. Ideas are like irregular tides if you don’t sail when it is high tide, you miss and never know when another chance to sail your boat would come.
Fallacy of Creativity
Now, this is the most interesting section. Being creative is not all ‘Alice in the wonderland’.
Consider two people who want to be writers. Both of them come up with the idea of writing a book. The first one gives a brilliant idea but could not write one but the other one with the same idea writes the book and becomes the bestseller.
You would say the second author is a creative genius. But what about the first author? The first would-be author is considered to be a dreamer and not a doer.
We often mistake the idea of a great book with the book itself, brilliant talks for actual doings.
Not only that for the second author, but his book also becomes the bestseller only when he has the best management, good designers, and brilliant promotion which is very hard to achieve.
Now, take a dozen people in a room and conduct a brainstorming session. Nevertheless, you would find dozens of unique ideas but most of them are far from being implemented. Ideas are mere thoughts if they can’t be implemented. No one bothers what you think.
A most common issue with creative people is that they don’t know how to monetize their stuff or how to make money through it.
For example, if you are into tech innovation or have an idea for a start-up you need funding. You need to convince some Richie Rich who has enough money and is willing to invest and form a good and efficient team and do marketing but these are not at all easy. Somehow you managed to do all the stuff but what will be your stake in money-making or your profit per cent. You didn’t invest, you didn’t market, you just gave the idea. And most of the money goes to Richie Rich.
However, if you find a solution to that Richie Rich; that is, somehow you raise money for your idea through friends and family. But how much assurance can you provide to them that they would get their money back?
A study conducted by IBM institutes found that more than 90 per cent of Indian startups fail within the first five years of inception. A very optimistic reader would see a 10 per cent success rate. All the best to them.
Corporates don’t want thinkers; they recruit people with enough skill and work ethics to complete a job in hand in a timeline.
Problems with Creative people
Creative people are often found complaining about an organisation or how the management refused to implement their ideas. That is they are incapable of processing their ideas. They talk about how organisations are nearsighted, that is they focus on short term goals and how they would be at a loss if they don’t implement their ideas in the long future.
However, management leaders seem to be more profound to the people who succeed at low-risk tasks than to people who just missed at high-risk tasks.
Studies have found an overlap with creative individuals and the development of mental health problems including bipolar disorder, schizotypy, and schizophrenia. And these are commonly found in artists, musicians and writers. These can be associated with their hyper brain activities.
Historical records suggest that in 1693, Sir Isaac Newton, the renowned scientist, experienced an episode of psychosis at the age of 51 which was characterized by paranoid delusions, insomnia, irritability, and loss of appetite.
For other creative geniuses, depression is a common mental health issue.
Whereas some studies have found some of this group of individuals to be narcissists; A disorder in which a person has an inflated sense of self-importance.
After reading the above two sections you must be bothered about what to do then. An approach could be to perform constructive actions. Generate ideas, see their implementation, tell your superiors, if approved, go for it and if not then you don’t lose anything. Remember to choose wisely and live well.