Imagination is the source of creativity. It’s a place where unlimited possibilities reside. It’s where pure energy lives.
People are innately imaginative and creative. However, most people are simply not conscious of their imaginative and creative selves.
Creativity is the cognitive process of developing a novel idea or concept.
Teresa M. Amabile, a creativity expert, argues that creativity is not a quality of a person. Rather, it is a quality of ideas, behaviors or products.
According to her, creativity has 3 basic ingredients:
1. Domain-Relevant Skills – These are skills associated with expertise in a relevant field (e.g., artistic ability, technical ability, talent, etc.).
2. Creativity-Relevant Skills – These skills include a cognitive style or method of thinking oriented towards exploring new directions, approaches that can be used to generate new ideas, and a work style conducive to developing creative ideas.
3. Task Motivation – Recent evidence suggests that a genuine interest in a task for its own sake, rather than for achieving external rewards such as money, enhances creativity.
So how can you develop your creativity? Here are 2 ways:
1. Provocative Operation, coined by Edward de Bono – This involves disrupting your thought patterns. It works with the premise that the more you are used to something, the less stimulating it is for your thinking.
Application: Insert “interruptions” into your day. This can be writing in a different room or area, reading magazines you wouldn’t normally read, tuning in to a different radio or television station, cooking and eating something different.
2. Forced Analogy – This method forces you to compare a concept, idea or problem with something else that it has little or nothing in common with. The results are new insights.
Application: Compare an emotion (e.g., elation, excitement, anxiety) with a tangible object (e.g., pen, chair, door). How is anxiety like a door?
When you need to tap the creative inside you, use these 2 techniques. Tap into your imagination and you enable yourself to create new things, come up with ideas you have never thought of before. Tap into your imagination and you awaken your creativity.
(c) 2003-2004 Shery Ma Belle Arrieta-Russ
Shery is the creator of WriteSparks! – a software that generates over 10 *million* Story Sparkers for Writers. Download WriteSparks! Lite for free –
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