Every single one of us has the power to be creative. As human beings it is part of our natural makeup. The trouble is that we block our natural creativity too often, and thus make mistakes in thinking and give ourselves more problems than we should. Here are 7 ways to open up your natural creativity and unblock the channels.
Don’t Make Assumptions
We often make a “ass” out of “u” and “me” if we assume Hypotheses are examples of idle thinking. We just don’t wait to get all the information we need to arrive at the correct conclusions. There’s the customer’s story at the bank that returns after cashing a check and turning to leave, saying, “Excuse me, I think you’ve made a mistake.” The cashier replies, “I ‘m sorry, but I can’t do anything. You should count it. Once you walk away we are no longer liable. “The customer replies: Well, all right. Thanks for the $20 extra.”
Tip: When you feel yourself wanting to draw conclusions, just wait until you have all the information.
Review other points of view
A truly open mind is willing to accept that not only do other people have other viewpoints just as valid from their own but that these other viewpoints may be more valid. A story is told that the modernist painter Pablo Picasso once travelled through Spain on a train when he entered into contact with a rich businessman who was critical of surreal art. As evidence that modern art did not properly represent reality, he took a photo of his wife from his wallet and said: “This is how my wife should look, not in some stupidly stylised representation.” Picasso took the photo, studied it for a few moments and asked: “This is your wife? “The businessman nodded proudly. “She is very tiny, observed Picasso wryly.
Tip: Don’t have a monopoly on how things are. Things aren’t always what they seem. Be ready to consider other points of view.
Avoid Yo-Yo Thinking
Many people seem to have a propensity to shift one minute from a extremely optimistic mood to one that is strongly pessimistic the next, all because of what they see around them. It is like a yo-yo: one minute up, the next one down. Staying neutral and not allowing emotions to get the better out of you is far healthier.
Tip: Remember that things are rarely as good – or as bad – as you think they are.
No Lazy Thinking Habits
Habit may be a big barrier to critical thought and yet another sign of laziness. Test out the trial. Write down and remind others to spell the Scottish surnames Macdonald, Macpherson and Macdougall. Now follow with the word Machinery, and see what’s going on. Most people may mis-pronounce this. That’s because we tend to think regularly, and don’t like what doesn’t fit.
Tip: Don’t think that, just because things happened in a certain way once before, that they will happen like that again.
Don’t Think Like An Old Person
Think like A Child. Work reveals that in a child of two, the number of synapses, or connections, in the brain is higher than in an ordinary person. The explanation for that is that as adults we do, while a child of two has no restricting perception of the universe. It’s like a sculptor who begins with a large block of clay, more than he needs, and then gradually removes the clay while moulding his sculpture. When we use our minds as a kid to embrace everything without judgement, then we will potentially interrupt to undo the cycle of brain aging.
Tip: Don’t worry about the myth of age. With the right stimulus and a passion for learning, you can actually improve your brain’s powers.
See The Detail and The Big Picture
You might know John Godfrey Saxe ‘s poem “The Blind Men and The Elephant” This tells how Indostan ‘s six blind men go to see an elephant, and each attempt to work out what it is to touch him. One blind man touches the tusk, another touches the bark and another touches the tail. Without being able to see the whole elephant, of course, they end up with completely contradictory conclusions.
Tip: Try to keep the big picture in front of you while looking at details. It will help to put everything in its proper place and context.
Think For Yourself
In many organizations which value action over innovation, taking time out to think is still frowned upon. People working in creativity-constrained organizations are prone to think the way they are expected to think, or as some do, or like the way of thought has always been. It’s like the blinkered thinking described by Hans Christian Anderson in his “The Emperor’s New Clothes” story. Anyone in the country wants to see that the emperor is nude and has been duped into pretending that for his coronation he is wearing a magnificent costume. Only a young boy who was ill and wasn’t part of the cultural brainwashing can see the truth and shouts: “Look, everyone, the Emperor doesn’t wear any clothes.
Tip: Don’t let others tell you how to think. When others ask your opinion, tell it to them straight.
Once you make these 7 techniques part of your habitual thinking patterns, you will amaze yourself with how easy it is to come up with fresh, innovative and creative solutions to all of life’s problems.