Creativity isn’t a talent; it’s a skill that you can build through daily practices. Much of the blame for lack of creativity, and therefore innovation, can be traced to our educational systems. Teachers in the classroom are interested in correct answers, this often promotes rote learning and suppresses creative thinking. If you want to be more successful, there are many things you can do to help get your creative juices flowing. Here are three ways to foster creativity in yourself:
Openness is one of the five big personality traits. Practicing openness can help motivate you to consider new ideas, concepts, and experiences. Creative people tend to be quite open. In order to foster the creativity, you have to embrace, rather than resist, new ideas and experiences. If you are able to open yourself up to new prospects, it will help you to develop new ways of thinking.
Ask New Questions
If you want to get creative and approach problems or situations differently, you have to ask new questions. In order to solve a problem, most creative people try and ask as many questions as possible, the more varied questions they ask, the more creative ideas they spark.
“Most people self-edit, killing potentially creative ideas because we’re afraid that our bosses or peers will see us fail. We stick to ‘safe’ solutions or suggestions. We hang back, allowing others to take risks.” – David & Tom Kelley (Creative Confidence)
Get into the habit of asking more questions. Really think about how you could answer this question and use the lenses of different people as a way of training yourself to describe a problem in different ways.
Creative people are highly knowledgeable. For example, Einstein, Coltrane, and O’Keefe were creative people that were also experts in their own field. Maximise the quality of your knowledge by developing habits that allow you to explain things back to yourself. Improve your understanding by explaining what you have read, heard or seen in a way that you can fully comprehend. If you have a thorough understanding of a topic, you will be able to follow ideas to new places, without interrupting your flow.