Know The Fundamental Skills Of Creative Thinking

It is not enough to have a good mind; the main thing is to use it.”
– Descartes

Technically speaking, the best way to boost your creativity is to boost the communication flow between your two brain hemispheres: your left and right brains.

Apparently during the creative process, our left and right brains are focused on the problem, exchanging information to and fro in a form of a “partnership.”

Highly creative people are known to have an easy and unobstructed flow of information between their left and right brains. They know how to increase the stimulation to their brain and expose it to lots of experiential stimulation, stretching and expanding its creative prowess by bringing it to new uncharted waters.

After all, they understand that every learning experience is a mental one. And the more mentally stimulating and experiential an activity is, the more they learn.

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Seizing The Opportunity

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One of the most fundamental skills of creativity is the ability to see an opportunity and seize it.

Every day, we are faced with countless opportunities to develop our creative thinking skills. Such opportunities present themselves while we are at home with the kids, going to work, at the workplace, at board meetings, out to lunch, or hanging out in the pubs with our friends.

The problem we face is not so much a lack of activities or events to stimulate our creative senses. There is in fact no shortage of encounters for us to develop our creativity. The real challenge is for us to recognize these moments as opportunities for seizing and for creative outburst.

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Challenging Assumptions

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Many inventions were the result of people who were willing to challenge assumptions that existed during their time.

People tend to see only what they think to see. Every time we look at something that is in our world, we make our own assumptions about the reality before us. We based our lives and decisions on those assumptions we make. If we accept those assumptions as real and concrete, we will live by them. However, the moment someone chooses to challenge those same assumptions as “unreal”, he or she may be on the road to discovering something new and different.

Challenging assumptions is an important component of creativity because it forces us to look beyond what is already accepted or is obvious. It can lead to the kind of perceptual breakthroughs we are looking for in the problems before us.

Oftentimes our assumptions of things are so entrenched that it never crosses our minds to challenge them. These assumptions are apparently so established that we no longer question their validity, even though time has passed and things have changed. We are so used to them that we simply accept them as they are.

But many of our life‚s problems are tainted with false assumptions and they prevent us from thinking something new and different. They stifle our creativity and the result is the more or less the same set of tried solutions. No new and novel possibilities.

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Taking Risks

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Taking risks is part and parcel of being a creative thinker.

If you’re not willing to take risks (and these can include calculated risks) and experience failure, then you cannot expect to be a great creative thinker. No one truly succeeds without failing first. And no one truly becomes a creative genius without having to “risk his ideas.”

However, if you really want to experience major leaps in your creativity, then you’ll have to learn to take risks. You’ll fail but failure is good: it accelerates the learning process by generating new information and science has shown that our brain literally rewires itself each time we make a mistake. Our brain learns through a series of trials and errors.

Looking At Problems From A New Perspective
No new ideas will evolve from old perspectives. To create a new product, you must be able to visualize that new product. But you cannot do this if you keep looking at your problem from the same perspective.

You got to look at your problems from a new perspective in order to gain new insights. By changing your perspective and shifting to a new one, you will be able to expand your mental horizon and capture something you were previously unable to see. Only by seeing something new, will you be able to think up new ideas and create something new.

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Thinking Ambiguously

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The ability to think ambiguously is a great boon to yielding creative insights.

This same ability is being exhibited every time someone indulges in wordplay or humor.

People who can think ambiguously are known to be fluid and flexible thinkers. A tinge of ambiguous thinking during the idea generation stage of the creative process has the power to bring out a genius of an idea!

However, the main problem in our society is that people generally prefer things that are clear and unambiguous. They don’t like to associate themselves with things that are vague and have more than one meaning. As a result, we become rather rigid in the way we think, preferring to be involved in only things that have clear and specific parameters. The outcome: predictability.

By Patrick C.

About the Author
Patrick C. is a creativity trainer & bestselling author.His unorthodox creative thinking techniques, icebreakers, brainteasers & learning systems at http://www.wordjuxtapoz.com intrigued hundreds of audiences.

Article Source: http://www.simplysearch4it.com/article/45739.html

7 Tips to Make You More Creative

Follow these tips to be more creative. Use your improved creativity to develop and donate ideas to help others.

Many great things have started as an simple, creative idea. Consider donating some of your best ideas to help others. The more creative you are, the more ideas you will be able to create. You can be creative even if you don’t think you are.

I have known many people that were scared to use a computer for the first few times. However, after diving into it they became more comfortable. They were willing to take a risk and make some mistakes. The result was an ability to learn and do things they would never be able to do without the use of a computer.

Being creative and thinking up world-changing ideas occurs in the same way. Everyone can be creative but they have to be willing to start. The creative process will then become more natural over time.

Try the following tips to help you on your journey to be more creative:

1. Record your ideas on whatever is comfortable and convenient at the moment .  What is important is that you record your ideas. In the past, I have forgotten ideas that I thought of when I was on a walk. Now I carry a digital recorder with me on those walks. At other times I use my computer, notepad or journal. Choose what will work best for you and make sure you have a way to record your ideas at all times. You never know when an important idea will surface.

2. Don’t limit yourself to ideas that seem possible. Capture all of your ideas.  Even those that seem impossible to implement are important for a couple of reasons. First, what seems impossible to you may not be impossible sometime in the future or for someone else. Second, impossible ideas encourage further creative ideas that might be more likely to be implemented.

3. Change your scenery or location.  A change in scenery can stimulate the creativity inside you. A change might be as simple as looking out a window. You can also visit someplace new like a park, beach, or mall. The new environment can foster new ideas.

4. Read on many topics . It is amazing how many things in a totally unrelated subject can prompt new ideas. By broadening your knowledge into more areas, you make your creativity potential grows.

5. Go for a walk. Some of my best ideas have happened when I was on a walk. This applies to any form of moderate exercise. I have heard of others that have written articles and speeches while waalking or jogging.

6. Focus in 10-15 minute increments. It does not take a significant amount of time to brainstorm some potential ideas. In fact, brainstorming works best when done for short periods of time. Concentrate for a few minutes on generate as many ideas to address a specific area or problem. Then capture anything that comes to mind throughout the rest of the day (see tip #1). You will have several ideas for consideration for little investment of time. One of those could become something tremendous for helping others.

7. Think big. What question are you asking to prompt your ideas? The larger the question, the larger the impact those ideas may have on the world. You can start by addressing smaller problems but don’t limit yourself to those. You have unique experiences, knowledge and talents that should be applied to helping others on a grand scale as well.

Follow these tips and you will be on your way to generating ideas that have the potential to change the world. Don’t let your previous lack of creativity keep you from developing and donating your ideas. Get started today.

More than One Way to Skin a Cat: Adventures in Creative Thinking

How many times have you caught yourself saying that there could be no other solution to a problem – and that that problem leads to a dead end? How many times have you felt stumped knowing that the problem laying before you is one you cannot solve. No leads. No options. No solutions.

Did it feel like you had exhausted all possible options and yet are still before the mountain – large, unconquerable, and impregnable? When encountering such enormous problems, you may feel like you’re hammering against a steel mountain. The pressure of having to solve such a problem may be overwhelming.

But rejoice! There might be some hope yet!

With some creative problem-solving techniques you may be able to look at your problem in a different light. And that light might just be the end of the tunnel that leads to possible solutions.

First of all, in the light of creative problem-solving, you must be open-minded to the fact that there may be more than just one solution to the problem. And, you must be open to the fact that there may be solutions to problems you thought were unsolvable.

Now, with this optimistic mindset, we can try to be a little bit more creative in solving our problems.

Number one; maybe the reason we cannot solve our problems is that we have not really taken a hard look at what the problem is. Here, trying to understanding the problem and having a concrete understanding of its workings is integral solving the problem. If you know how it works, what the problem is, then you have a better foundation towards solving the problem.

Not trying to make the simple statement of what problem is. Try to identify the participating entities and what their relationships with one another are. Take note of the things you stand to gain any stand to lose from the current problem. Now you have a simple statement of what the problem is.

Number two; try to take note of all of the constraints and assumptions you have the words of problem. Sometimes it is these assumptions that obstruct our view of possible solutions. You have to identify which assumptions are valid, in which assumptions need to be addressed.

Number three; try to solve the problem by parts. Solve it going from general view towards the more detailed parts of the problem. This is called the top-down approach. Write down the question, and then come up with a one-sentence solution to that from them. The solution should be a general statement of what will solve the problem. From here you can develop the solution further, and increase its complexity little by little.

Number four; although it helps to have critical thinking aboard as you solve a problem, you must also keep a creative, analytical voice at the back of your head. When someone comes up with a prospective solution, tried to think how you could make that solution work. Try to be creative. At the same time, look for chinks in the armor of that solution.

Number five; it pays to remember that there may be more than just one solution being developed at one time. Try to keep track of all the solutions and their developments. Remember, there may be more than just one solution to the problem.

Number six; remember that old adage,” two heads are better than one.” That one is truer than it sounds. Always be open to new ideas. You can only benefit from listening to all the ideas each person has. This is especially true when the person you’re talking to has had experience solving problems similar to yours.

You don’t have to be a gung-ho, solo hero to solve the problem. If you can organize collective thought on the subject, it would be much better.

Number seven; be patient. As long as you persevere, there is always a chance that a solution will present itself. Remember that no one was able to create an invention the first time around.

Creative thinking exercises can also help you in your quest be a more creative problems solver.

Here is one example.

Take a piece of paper and write any word that comes to mind at the center. Now look at that word then write the first two words that come to your mind. This can go on until you can build a tree of related words. This helps you build analogical skills, and fortify your creative processes.

So, next time you see a problem you think you can not solve, think again. The solution might just be staring you right in the face. All it takes is just a little creative thinking, some planning, and a whole lot of work.