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How To Develop Creativity And Creativity In Yourself? - Self-development
How To Develop Creativity And Creativity In Yourself? - Self-development

Video: How To Develop Creativity And Creativity In Yourself? - Self-development

Video: How To Develop Creativity And Creativity In Yourself? - Self-development
Video: 6 Steps To Increase Your Creativity In Everyday Life [Animated] 2023, March

Want to develop creative thinking? It's easy! Now I'm going to teach you this with a simple experiment: imagine a simple object, say a paper clip. Then, within five minutes, write down as many uses of the paperclip as possible. Just try to answer the question: "How can you use it?" Have you written? Congratulations, you've just gotten a hands-on experience with “divergent thinking” and “brainstorming”

The term "divergent thinking" was coined in the 1960s by the American intelligence researcher Joy Guilford, who tried to figure out how creative thinking differs from non-creative thinking. According to Guildford, non-creative (convergent) thinking sequentially goes through different options for solving a problem, trying to get one "only correct" solution and rejecting all the others.

But the catch is that real life is not mathematics. There is a huge variety of problems / tasks where several solutions can be “right” at the same time. If you are "creative" in accounting, you could be jailed. But if you advertise your product using the "one right" method described in some textbook, then such advertising is unlikely to work. It simply will not attract the attention of consumers, it will seem boring to them and does not motivate them to make a purchase.

Solving a creative problem requires a “broad” type of thinking capable of coming up with as many solutions to the problem as possible. Guilford called this type of thinking divergent, from the Latin divergere - "diverge in different directions."

The natural function of our psyche is to create associations. As soon as we think about an object, we automatically remember other objects associated with the original object associatively (by some similar, or, on the contrary, contrasting features). As soon as we want, we can create associative chains of any length that can diverge (like branches of a tree) in a variety of semantic directions.

Convergent (non-creative) thinking works as a "strict controller" that breaks the chain of associations as soon as a suitable correct answer is found. Divergent (creative) thinking acts as a "kind observer" that allows associative chains to grow in different directions and simply selects and fixes any associations that may be at least something useful for solving the problem.

Divergent thinking is not a unique ability, everyone has it

To "turn it on", various methods, techniques and techniques of creative thinking can be useful. While completing the paper clip task, you just applied (in a somewhat truncated version) one of these methods - the brainstorming method. Brainstorming was invented in the 1930s by advertising professionals.

The simplified technique looks like this:

  • 1) formulate the problem / task;
  • 2) in a limited time, offer as many answers and solutions as possible, while any ideas, even the most stupid ones, are considered "good";
  • 3) after the allotted time, all the proposed ideas are grouped and evaluated (based on pre-developed criteria).

The result of "brainstorming" is always several alternative solutions to the problem, each of which is correct in its own way.

You can rightly say: "Well, everyone knows about brainstorming today … And where to find out about other techniques of creative (divergent) thinking?" We answer: there are books that are real "encyclopedias of creative thinking techniques."

First of all, I would like to recommend the books of two recognized "creativity gurus" - Edward de Bono and Michael Mikalko. For example, Edward de Bono wrote 57 books on the development of creative thinking, and this is not just some scattered "advice from a psychologist", but a holistic system for the development of creative thinking CoRT (Cognitive Research Trust; CoRT consists of 60 "thinking lessons" - 6 modules on 10 lessons each). De Bono's course "Thinking Tools" is taught at universities in 20 countries. And in 2005 he was even nominated for the Nobel Prize in Economics.

I understand that among the readers there can always be skeptics who will say: “Well, we played with the paper clip, and even came up with 100,500 ways to use it. But what is the use of such creativity ?! " Oh, you shouldn't be so underestimating paper clips! ?

Польза есть, и сейчас вы в этом убедитесь… Возьмите рекомендованные выше книги и обязательно добавьте к ним еще одну: Тина Силиг, «Сделай себя сам». Тина Силиг – преподавательница Стэнфордского университета, которая читает студентам курс по предпринимательству и инновациям. И на страницах своей книги (с.13–14) она описывает эксперимент со скрепками, которые проводит со студентами.

The essence of the experiment was that first the students were divided into teams; each team is a collective of entrepreneurs. Then each team is given 10 paper clips and given the task to create maximum value with these same paper clips within four hours. (According to one definition, an entrepreneur is a person who creates a product that has value for consumers / the market.) As you can see, the problem itself is most similar to Guilford's complicated test for creativity: you need to come up with as many ways to use paper clips as possible, provided that these the methods will have the highest market / consumer value.

Students solved this problem in different ways. For example, one of the teams found out that there was a world record for "the longest chain of paper clips" (its length is 30 kilometers), and loudly announced that they were going to break this record. Through this creative maneuver, a simple paper clip gained added value and turned into a charity object. Anyone could support the "record attack" by adding some of their own staples to the original ten staples as a donation. As a result, 10 staples have become tens of thousands of staples.

In fact, any entrepreneur solves a similar creative problem at the start of their activities. They have some limited resources (their "10 paper clips"), and they need to come up with something that will turn these resources into a full profit.

I repeated the experiment with 10 paper clips in domestic business schools, but at the request of the participants it was a "game for money." Within four hours, the team had to sell a product built using the "10 paper clips plus your ideas" formula. The record revenue was about 20,000 rubles, and this is more than a clear result of the power of creative thinking. As one of the participants in the experiment joked, "Perhaps it's time to quit oil production and switch to paper clips!"

paper clip monument
paper clip monument

In February 1990, a five-meter paper clip monument was erected in the Norwegian capital Oslo. Its author, Yar Eris Paulson, decided in this way to celebrate the centenary of the mass use of the double flat turn of wire. He said that many people underestimate the significance of this invention, and, perhaps, after the installation of the monument, people will begin to appreciate what they have.

Currently, in the United States alone, about 20 billion paper clips are sold annually. Moreover, according to some studies, only no more than 5% of them are used for their intended purpose …

By the way, if you remove time limits, then paper clips - plus a creative approach, of course - can be turned into something much more weighty. In 2005, Canadian Kyle MacDonald came up with the One Red Paperclip project. The idea of the project was simple: people like to change, and often the exchange is such that for some thing that is of little value to me, I can get a thing of greater value (but not particularly valuable for the exchange partner).

There are convenient electronic bulletin boards on the Internet where you can exchange anything. Kyle traded a single red paperclip and tried to add value to each new trade. He exchanged a paper clip for a fountain pen, a fountain pen for a doorknob, etc. There were only 15 exchanges, and as a result of the last one, Kyle got … his own two-story house! How do you like this creative trick: with a slight movement of divergent thinking, a paper clip turns … into a house ?!

And the last thing … What are we all about paper clips and paper clips? The advice of a psychologist is only valuable when we use it in our lives. Are you ready to repeat the experiment? Just instead of a paper clip, choose yourself or some vital task / problem for you. Formulate the question, turn on divergent thinking, and just come up with as many answers to this question as possible. Among the answers will necessarily be not only "the only right", but also "plan B", "plan C" (and so on), which will help you cope with any difficulties.

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