I'm not creative! Think again, any problem can be approached through creative thinking


Everyone is creative!


When we are mindful of creating opportunities in our daily life to be creative, we are approaching a problem in an innovative and original way. We are also, taking care of ourselves and our mental health, its about self awareness, boosting self esteem, being in the moment and present, calming our mind and quieting the mind and the negative self talk, and most of all being non judgemental.
 
No matter what we do, we can think creatively.


We can cook, attend to our gardens, journal, sew, crochet, doodle, photograph on our smart phone and post on social media, decorate home made cupcakes, renovate, restore a car, sing, out together an outfit for the day,  write, redesign the colour palette of the lounge room, approach a problem at work from a different perspective...we can do anything.  We can make and we can do. We can provide opportunities to explore and create.


We can use our imagination or original ideas to problem solve and come up with new ideas.
We often think we are not creative because creativity is so aligned to the arts fields - visual arts (painting, sculpture, drawing, etc) or dance, acting, music, or even media (film, etc). But, WE are all creative. We all need to problem solves, to attend to thinking that requires more than one way of approaching a task. Even if we are not in a creative field, we have the chance to be creative in how we approach tasks.


The work of E. Paul Torrance, building on J.P. Guilford’s research, is a common framework to approach creativity and creative thinking. This approach looks at the capacity to detect gaps and propose various solutions to problem solve through the production of novel ideas, the re-combination of them, and the exploration of novel relationships between those ideas.
I really like this structure as a way to see how it is possible to explore creativity in our personal or working life: 

  1. Fluency - the generation of as many ideas or alternative solutions to a problem. This is like the brain dump. Capture as many ideas as possible without putting any restrictions on yourself or your thinking.
  2. Flexibility - refers to seeing ideas from a different point of view and to use as many different approaches or strategies to produce ideas that show a variety of possibilities or thoughts. 
  3. Elaboration - the process of enhancing ideas that are unique or unusual with focus on additional detail and clarity to improve the understanding of the topic/project.
  4. Originality - this is where you synthesis ideas and put information back together whereby the process of enhancing ideas that are unique or unusual are unpacked. 


So the next time you are placed in the position of problem solving, allow your creative juices to flow through thinking about about how your ideas can flow for the usual and unusual.