By Parisa Shahbaz
The future has always been inherently uncertain. But lately, it’s become increasingly difficult to predict. As global weather patterns are shifting toward the extreme and the digital revolution is transforming how we interact with the world around us, we are less able to simply project past strategies onto our future designs. Instead, we must imagine the future we want and devise a plan to make it happen within the new environmental and societal context.
Enter creativity: that elusive, enigmatic essence that imbues visionaries the ability to conjure ideas from the ether that have never been considered. As success becomes increasingly dependent on adaptability in this uncertain world, creativity is perhaps the most valuable trait one can possess. The good news is that, in reality, creativity isn’t bestowed from the heavens upon the chosen few; it is a distinctly human trait that is present to a certain degree within us all. And, researchers have been uncovering some fascinating and encouraging findings about the science of creativity. So, whether you’re a Global Shaper preparing for your upcoming face-to-face program or a project manager stumped over a site constraint, here are some strategies for getting your creative juices flowing.
1. Stay Curious Maintaining a childlike sense of wonder about the world is vital for creativity. This curiosity will lead you to new experiences and motivate you to step out of your comfort zone. During this exploration, it’s important that prior stereotypes and assumptions are not imparted on the environment. Things must be seen for what they are.
2. Welcome Paradoxes Creative people tend to exhibit seemingly contradictory traits. Blurring the line between work and play, trusting your intuition while remaining rational, and exhibiting both strength and sensitivity are all actions worth imitating that typically distinguish creative types.
3. Keep Your Focus Flexible The optimal mental state for creative thinking can be created by balancing two contrasting mental states: meditation and daydream. Meditation and mindfulness techniques build the concentration muscle by focusing internally on the ‘now’. Equipped with a strong concentration muscle, when the mind is then freed to daydream, it is more likely to uncover a path to a uniquely creative solution.
Reference: Mifsud, C. (2018, August). Seven Secrets to Unleashing Your Inner Genius. Special Time Edition The Science of Creativity, pp. 62-63.