The Fundamentals of Creative Thinking
What is creativity? There are several ways you can define the word “creativity.” One way of thinking about it is the ability to produce original and unusual ideas or to make something new or imaginative
During a recent conversation with a friend, he joked, “I don’t have a creative bone in my body,” you may even think the same about yourself, but I bet you’re wrong, as was he.
Everyone has a creative style in one way or another. Some are good at creating art, building things, or inventing cutting edge technology. Others have a talent for identifying new solutions to existing problems and finding better ways of doing things.
Look around, the house or apartment you are living in, the fixtures and fittings. Look at the clothes that your wearing. Everything you see was, at one time or another, somebody’s idea or thought.
Each time you decide something, it is because your mind perceives the situation a certain way. Each time you decide what to eat, what to wear, or how to organize something, you’re using creative thinking.
Creative thinking is thinking outside the box. Often, it involves lateral thinking, which is the ability to perceive patterns that are not obvious.
Creative thinking can mean devising new ways to carry out tasks, solve problems, and meeting challenges. It means bringing a fresh, sometimes unorthodox perspective to your work. This way of thinking can help businesses and organizations be more productive.
So How Does Creative Thinking Work?
Creative thinking in the workplace varies from artistic positions to highly technical ones. Generally, anything that involves a “eureka” moment is considered innovative. Here are a few examples of creative thinking in different jobs.
You don’t necessarily need to be an artist for your work to have an artistic side to it. Maybe you arrange window displays for retail or design gardens. Other artistically creative tasks might include logo designing, copywriting, and speech writing.
A creative problem-solver will find new solutions rather than merely identifying and implementing the norm. You might brainstorm new ways to cut energy use, find new ways to cut costs during a budget crisis or develop a unique litigation strategy to defend a client.
Before thinking creatively about something, you first need to understand it and posses the ability to scrutinize things to know what they mean. Whether you are looking at a text, data, or an equation, you need to be able to analyze it first.
To think creatively, set aside any preconceived notions or biases you may have, and look at things in a completely new way. You give yourself the best chance to think creatively by coming to a problem with an open mind.
Employers love creative employees who will help them to solve work-related issues. If you find yourself faced with a problem, consider ways to solve it before asking for help. If you need the input of a manager, suggest solutions rather than just pointing out problems.
Although it sounds contradictory to the yin and yang philosophy, being organised is an essential part of creativity. It helps if your ideas can be understood so others can follow through with your vision.
People will only appreciate your creative idea or solution if you communicate it effectively. You need to have excellent written and oral communication skills. That means you also need to be a good listener. You can come up with a unique solution by asking the right questions and listening to the answers.