“Creativity is seeing what others see and thinking what no one else ever thought.” - Albert Einstein
A few days ago, while I was skimming through the TikTok videos, one of them caught my attention. It showed seven ways to fold a pair of denim jeans!
How can people be so innovative even with the most frivolous things? How can I think that way? Can I be that creative?
Creativity: Not for some, but for all.
Do you doubt your creativity? I know why it is so. Most of us think that creativity is a gift that only some chosen ones have. It’s like the ability to speak Parseltongue in Hogwarts.
“Okay, maybe they (entrepreneurs / artists / creators) have to be creative, but I’m just a person with a normal job that doesn’t require me to be creative.”
Everyone needs creativity! But why?
Creativity opens your mind to look at the bigger picture. That, in turn, improves your ability to think out of the box when it comes to problem-solving. You look for answers that aren’t obvious and everywhere.
Searching for solutions gives you an unexpected gift - an excellent knowledge base. The more problems you solve, the more confident you become. Using creativity in problem-solving also clarifies your feelings and thoughts.
Creativity demands productivity. Productivity makes things happen. The more you can convert your ideas into reality, the more successful and accomplished you feel.
Seems non-negotiable to be creative, right?
The Play(ful)book To Become Your Creative Self
While we can directly jump upon the actions and habits that will make you creative, let’s not ignore those that block your creativity. The process of becoming creative starts by curbing the things that kill your creativity.
Aligning thoughts to creativity
- There’s no logic to this.
- It must be the correct answer as it came first to my mind
- I don’t know much
- I know too much
- I am not creative enough
- The answers are already there
These are some of the thoughts that block our minds from lateral thinking. The goal here is to pause and reflect on these thoughts responsible for stifling your creativity.
When an idea knocks on your mind, there are two ways you would deal with them:
- You are scared to act differently.
- You feel inspired and motivated to accomplish it. Once the idea is executed, you feel confident and happy.
Creativity is just connecting things. When you ask creative people how they did something, they feel a little guilty because they didn’t really do it, they just saw something. It seemed obvious to them after a while. That’s because they were able to connect experiences they’ve had and synthesize new things. - Steve Jobs
Sometimes, you need to let your brain flow in different directions that may not feel relevant to work in hand. Don’t judge your thoughts and emotions, allow your mind to explore - your thoughts will converge eventually.
What will spark your creativity?
What is it that makes you think differently? What is it that intrigues you? Here are some small yet impactful ways that can stimulate your creativity.
- “I’ve always wanted to… but …” Well, start with that! I always wanted to pursue writing. Here I am. Now, your turn.
- Show yourself. Your ideas. Your opinions. Your creations. Your knowledge. This blog is my creation, my knowledge. Tell me about you? I am all ears!
- Believe that creativity is everywhere and you need it for everything. You even need creativity to argue who’s better - The Yankees or The Sox.
- Keep your five senses in alert mode. Stay away from your devices. Talk to people. Smell roses. Feel the breeze.
PS: Bed, Bathroom, and Bus (any mode of transportation you use) are known to be the most fertile places for creativity. Be ready to get loads of creative ideas there.
Once sparked, how to capture creativity?
Ideas are as swift as rabbits. Capture them asap, or you could lose them forever. Create a framework to capture your thoughts instantly—a pocket notebook and a pen, or simply Apple Notes would work.
Aerotime helps you capture thoughts instantly anywhere on your Mac with a shortcut key.
This practice will sustain your creativity.
The best way you can sustain your creativity is by creating. Initially, your work may need a lot of improvement but stick with it. Iterate on it. There is no other way.
"Creation and creativity are inextricably linked." — Freeman Patterson
When I wrote a blog for the first time, it was so terrible that my 12-year-old cousin mocked me. But over time, I have become better. And I know I will continue to improve with time.
Converting the creative process into a habit.
Jerry Seinfeld’s large wall calendar had the entire year listed on a single page and hung it where it can be seen clearly. Every day he would take a red Magic Marker to make a large X on each date. Xs create a streak. The only job’s now is not to break it.
Block a dedicated time each day to work on your creative ideas. Some days it’ll be easy; some days, it’ll be hard. But the only rule is that you can’t do anything else during that time block. It is dedicated to your creative workflows.
To sum up...
Many creatives describe the process of creating as repeatedly failing until they find something that works. No successful creative personality took failure as a means to stop. It was only taken as a feedback loop to improve.
We become creative when we create a lot, and we produce a lot when we allow ourselves to create “crap.” Eventually, we forget the crap and only remember the best.
The Eureka Moment doesn’t always exist. Creativity is not just random ideas that pop up suddenly in your mind. It is a process. You have to be patient to be creative.
So, go ahead. Be Creative. I am sure you will do great!