The Number One Habit Of Creative Individuals
The most important asset of creative people is NOT their capability to generate original ideas. Nor is it the fact that they delay judgement during ideation. There’s one habit that’s even more important; their willingness to spot value.
We’re all able to look for value. However, most of us are too caught up in the act of searching for flaws, that we overlook potential opportunities. A highly creative individual also sees the shortcomings of an idea, yet chooses to ignore them.
Creative individuals look beyond the ugly, risks, defects and missing parts. They only focus on what they consider to be interesting. To a creative mind an idea is nothing more and nothing less than a starting point.
There is always something wrong with an idea. There will always be arguments around to explain why an idea wouldn’t work. It’s too expensive, time-consuming, difficult, extreme or perhaps impossible or even illegal.
It’s not very interesting to analyse an idea and reveal its weaknesses. Everybody can do that. What’s much more impressive is noticing how the idea could work.
Next time you are in a brainstorm session, be proactive about spotting value. Delaying your judgement is not enough. You have to explore, explain and utilise the potential of an idea.
People who are not familiar with creative thinking often find it difficult to turn an impossible idea into something realistic. They struggle to transform the absurd into something useful.
If you see this happen during a creative session, don’t hesitate to confront your co-thinkers. Challenge them to use their creative muscle. Let them explore the idea thoroughly.
Let them answer questions like:
What do you like about this idea?
What does it make you think of?
What’s the concept behind it?
Can you split the idea into elements?
In what ways can you use these elements?
What comes to mind when you look at this idea?
What does the creator want with this idea?
What are the benefits of this idea?
In what other ways can they be achieved?
What are the flaws of this idea?
How can they be removed?
What do we need to make it work?
What’s the value of this idea?
How could it be realised?
How else could this be realised?
How can we change it to make it feasible?
Answering questions like these can turn one awful looking idea into a valuable source of inspiration.
Look beyond the obvious and find creative ways to turn an impractical suggestion into a creative, yet feasible idea.
See ideas as rough material. Exploring an idea is a great way to discover insights and interesting elements. One of these might turn out to be the starting point of an brilliant idea.
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Flickr Creative Commons Image via Bart.