Image of coloured pencils

How to be more creative

We are slowly embracing the idea that “creativity” is a skill that needs to be nurtured through active learning and practising.  Books, online articles and videos give out many ways to “become more creative in our lives”.  They all seem reasonable and doable; we get inspired and ready to roll up our sleeves – and then we ask ourselves the most awkward question – “so… where do I begin?”

In his recent article, Mythbuster Adam Savage tackled an excellent question – “how do I get started when I don’t even know what to make?”.  Savage’s answer is very straightforward – “You need to overcome the inertia of inaction and indecision and begin developing some creative momentum”.  In other words – just start creating.

When it comes to creativity, too often we copy what others are doing rather than doing what we are really passionate about.  We are also poor executors of our own ideas.  Self-doubt/perfectionism complex gets in the way and we end up “ruminating” rather than “iterating”.  A quote from writer Karen Rindaldi puts a light on what perfectionism really is – “Since the perfectionist will settle for nothing less, she is left with nothing”.

Spanish artist Pablo Picasso, who is most known for his ingenuity and innovation in arts, once said:

“I don’t have a clue. Ideas are simply starting points. I can rarely set them down as they come to my mind. As soon as I start to work, others well up in my pen. To know what you’re going to draw, you have to begin drawing.

A common piece of advice from these wonderful creators?  Just start creating, doesn’t matter what it is so long as it matters to you.  Mistakes will be made and progress might be slow – but the process of creating will over time make you more creative.

Want to make something, but have no idea where to begin? Find some inspiration from Adam Savage here. Also, you can read The New York Times article (It is great to) Suck at something here.

Posted in Monthly Musings.

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