How does the mind of a creative person work? How it’s the creative spark made?
It has been considered that creativity is connected with a high IQ and so, the creative process has 4 stages: preparation, incubation, illumination and verification. But this would mean that creativity is a rational process that has a structured way of development. Someone accumulates information, processes it and combines all the data in the subconscious mind, then brings a new idea on a conscious level. It’s a culminating point of a successful association and the subject presents it to the world, thus giving it value.
But, the truth is, creation is a chaotic combination of a back and forth dance of these kinds of processes, while juggling with multiple and diverse pieces of puzzle. Creativity is messy, combining and harmonizing conflicting elements. What differentiates a normal person from a very creative one is not IQ, it’s actually the complexity of his/her personality. Even if a smart mind is a plus, it doesn’t assure the spark of a creative one.
An innovative mind is open to its inner life, prefers complexity and ambiguity, has a higher tolerance for the lack of order and has the ability to reconstruct it and find a meaning, seeing a pattern in chaos. It’s independent, unconventional and it takes risks, using at maximum what it already has with a high adaptability to different circumstances.
Creativity means a multiplication of diverse factors that are fluidly interconnected. The big 3 are: plasticity, divergence and convergence.
Being open to new experiences, daydreaming, appreciating its alone time, the creative mind has the plasticity to explore and play with a lot of ideas. A desire to explore is the core essence of energy and inspiration. The subject zooms in and out through his lenses. Divergence gives him a nonconformist approach and independent thinking that associates him with impulsiveness and low levels of agreeability and dutifulness. Convergence helps him conform and be pragmatic in demonstrating the viability of his ideas. These 3 traits start up the creative process, combining innovation with utility. A creative mind is an introvert and an extrovert, pro and con, salt and sugar, all in one. It’s a contrast of ambiguities that come with compassion, empathy and the ability to understand one’s self and others.
Disorderly emotions and sensibility, creative playfulness, intuition and passion inspire creative people to think differently, hunt new experiences and get in that flow state of mind where all these bits of information are processed not only in a logical conscious way, but also in a deeper subconscious one that helps them see new patterns. The different ways of cognitive implication in exploration, along with a high sensibility brings out the integrative complexity. This is the ability and the desire to recognize new patterns and connections between pieces of information that are apparently dissociated.
The main idea is that we need new experiences and information to be able to think differently and the most important innovations came from the interconnections of different fields.
Creativity doesn’t need adversity, but when it’s there, it forces us to reexamine our opinions and plans for the future. And this is a huge creative potential. “The lotus flower grows in mud” is about the courage to attack your own security- identity and future constructed self and shatter the illusion of control. This is how a creative mind can construct, disable and reconstruct over and over again, taking risks and willing to fail.
Conformity is the death of creativity and it’s our duty to be unconventional and be open to new experiences and ideas. By having a creative lifestyle, we value the complexity of our own being and rise up to our potential!
The content above was inspired by the book “Wired to create”, written by Scott Barry Kaufman & Carolyn Gregoire and the title is a quote by Elisabeth Kübler-Ross -a Swiss-American psychiatrist- reminding of the process of positive disintegration described by Dąbrowski.