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What is creativity?

what is creativity

I have been thinking about buying books about creativity. Books like:

But, will reading books about creativity help me become more creative? I’m not sure. That’s why I’ve been asking myself the question; what is creativity?

According to Wikipedia, what is creativity refers to:

… the invention or origination of any new thing (a product, solution, artwork, literary work, joke, etc.) that has value.

It should have value? Hmm. What about the image above, my son’s creative artwork. It has value to me. But, it probably doesn’t have any value to most other people.

Whenever I feel stuck, and I don’t have any ideas of what to write about, I walk outside for inspiration. Walking helps me to be creative, because I always end up with many new ideas.

But.

When trying to answer what is creativity, I always end up with a notion that creativity is something different, something that most people don’t think about, an alternative. What if I ask you what is creativity, would you say that ย showing a TV advertisement with zombies when children are still watching TV is creative? It sure is an alternative way of thinking – but is it the invention or originating of any new thing and does it have value?

Probably not.

So, what is creativity?

What is creativity – original and value

I’m thinking that the question, what is creativity, should be defined as an alternative way of solving problems, and I believe that a definition should be about finding a different solution. But, we shouldn’t always keep focusing on the solution. Sometimes we end up with the answer, without even focusing on anything but a simple idea.

When I think about people who are using creativity professionally, I think about occupations like:

And, I don’t think about the man cutting my hair, my doctor, or the people who are fixing my car. The reason I’m not, is probably because most of the time, they’re doing the same things over and over again. But, think about it, what is creativity in business? Can’t we all be creative, no matter what our work is, if we just focus on progress, and doing our work a bit different than our competitors?

What is creativity to you?

I remember my dentist and the painting, it was definitively creative. But, did it solve a problem and did it add value? It probably didn’t, so I am asking you what is creativity if you don’t have a problem to solve and if it doesn’t add value?



22 responses to “What is creativity?”

  1. iRewardChart says:

    Lately I find my creativity is charged via my 4yr old daughter. I am amazed how much inspired I am by her. We have too much pre-conceived notions in our mind, but when they look at something and infer, its a fresh look. When you look through their eyes, you’ll get a glimpse of a pristine mind. Its amazing and revealing to me.

    • I can relate to that, looking at my kids and how they are doing things and just the questions they are asking, sometimes I want them to keep being immature and just have the fun that they’re having now. I don’t want conformity to hit them. I enjoy seeing things in a completely different perspective, and kids are great that way ๐Ÿ™‚

      By the way, did you create your app based on your experience with kids?

  2. Amardeep says:

    I agree that creativity is not something you can learn from books. Creativity is something that you are born with. If are person is born with innate talents he will carve a life for himself and his own career with his creativity.

    • I have actually never thought about creativity as something we are born with, but you might be right. I know that there’s a huge difference in people when it comes to creativity, and some of the people I know that are brilliant have never read any books about the topic and they haven’t learned it as part of their education. But, I believe that some parts of creativity can be learned, I am just not sure how much.

  3. Lisa says:

    Creativity to me is doing anything in a different way. Anyone can be creative at any job if they find other ways to do it more efficiently or better. I think some people are born with more of it than others too. To me creativity is also like breathing, I can’t imagine not being able to use any.

    • That sounds right to me Lisa. More people should think like you, and try to do their jobs in a different way. I’m sure that anybody can do it, it’s just a matter of doing it. And I’m also sure that some people are born with more of it than others. I love the topic, and I hope to explore more of it through posts and engagements with my readers. We need to be different in order to have success.

  4. Adrienne says:

    You know Jens, I never really paid attention to what the word creativity really meant. To me it was coming up with fabulous things whether it be designs, music, art, entertainment, etc.

    Until I joined the online world I didn’t think of it in terms of content. But now we have blog posts, product pages, videos, etc. All things that can help us grow and learn as well.

    I think that being “creative” is bringing more to the table then just the average. I personally agree with Amardeep I must say. I don’t think it’s something that can be learned. I think you either have that way of thinking or you don’t. I could be wrong of course but that’s my view on it.

    Heck Jens, you are one of the most creative people I know when it comes to your content. You are always keeping our attention and making us think. Great qualities indeed.

    Thank you for sharing this Jens and you’ll probably get us all to thinking now. That’s a good thing by the way.

    ~Adrienne

    • Hey Adrienne,

      Bringing more to the table than just the average is a great definition. One of my clients is a car dealership and they are just amazing when it comes to helping their customers. I’m just looking at how they make their customers smile again and again, and I haven’t thought about that what they’re doing is being creative, but it really is. They’re helping their customers in a different way, and creating strong relationships by being different.

      Great stuff Adrienne, and your support is amazing.

  5. Hi
    Well I think creativity is something which a person does in their own natural way.

  6. Carolyn says:

    Hi Jens, I agree with Lisa and iRewardChart. Creativity is doing things a different way and that comes naturally to children. My youngest daughter definitely looks at the world differently than most and she is extremely creative.

    Creativity is so important. Who wants the same old, same old stuff? Creativity is what breeds innovation, solves problems and designs art. What would we do without it?

  7. Joseph Hipolito says:

    Creativity is one of the people talent, and everyone in have a different talent… This is really great post sir Jens I love it…

  8. Rogier Noort says:

    I believe children are creative because their minds are free.., they can see anything in anything. When they create it’s their imagination which guides them.., wonderful things happen when children are free to run with that process.
    Over the years creativity gets shoved to the back by our adult conventions and all of a sudden we need books to tell us how to be creative.., whilst as a kid, this was the default state of our mind.

    Creativity comes when you open your mind and when you do not use conventional thoughts and practices.
    Einstein said that no problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it. The only way is to solve the problem is to be creative.

  9. Aasma says:

    It’s certainly hard to describe creativity but according to me if you’re doing same thing using different technique and tools then it certainly a creativity. Actually it’s depend upon the person point of view. As you already mentioned in your post that something could be creative for you but it necessarily could not be creative for me.

  10. Tim Bonner says:

    Hey Jens

    Creativity to me is lots of things. To do with business, I think it’s thinking outside the box, doing something different to everyone else, doing the same thing as everyone else but finding a different slant on things.

    Everyone can learn to be creative though. You can learn to write music, draw and paint for example. I think often people are just afraid to do something different to everyone else for fear of criticism.

  11. To be creative is to think different than the rest and coming up with a solution that is out of the box. Staying away from the normal and not being afraid of change is what leads to creativity.

    Nice article.

  12. Interesting post Jens!

    Creativity to me is trying out things in a different way. It could be something that my kids want to do or the art and craft work they’ve been given in school, or it could be even the dishes I cook or the way I present my posts on my blog. Creativity can be in the way you write, the way you do up your home, or just about anything, which is away from the normal or usual.

    However, very few people really get down to use their creative skills, or perhaps they are all too tied down doing other things in their lives the normal way – isn’t it? I guess showing the seeds of creativity should start with kid’s when they are young and it’s us parents who need to instill this into them.

    Thanks for sharing. ๐Ÿ™‚

  13. Akos Fintor says:

    To me creativity is like intuition. It’s not really coming from the mind but from beyond it, which some calls consciousness, infinite intelligence, higher self…and so on.
    We can trigger the process of creativity but it’s not “we” who do the work, but something beyond our understanding that does the creation. We are just tools.

    that’s my take!
    Akos

    • I agree Akos. Creativity is like intuition, but sometimes creativity is like writing when we get writer’s block. And I believe that it helps focusing on how we best will become creative if it doesn’t come naturally ๐Ÿ™‚

  14. Creativity is the art of thinking that is not in the mind of the other people.to see a thing with the eye of our own console is creativity.It is hypothetical concept of a people that lies inside the mind of a person.The invention of technolgy & the development of the human race is totally based on creativity.Newton & we all see the falling of apple on the ground But the creativity of Newton made him the Newton.

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