You might not consider yourself a creative person. But then again, who says you’re not? Turns out, there are lots of facts we get wrong about creativity, leading many of us to think that it’s just not “our thing.”
Read on to learn the most common creativity myths.
Creativity is About Art
Painters, composers, and designers definitely spend lots of time creating. But producing something new, like art, isn’t the only way to exercise creativity. Creativity is also about problem-solving, generating ideas, and finding new solutions.
Creativity Comes From Strokes of Genius
Creativity narratives have emphasized stories of “miraculous moments”, times when an artist or scientist was struck with an amazing idea out of the blue. But what these stories leave out is that these moments culminate from lots of experimentation, exploration, and investigation. Don’t feel like you’re not creative just because ideas don’t come naturally. Persistence and dedication are far more important.
Being Creative Means Being Totally Original
Creativity certainly entails trying new solutions or alternative ways of thinking: you can’t just directly copy something and call it creative. But as experts have pointed out, nothing is totally original: the greatest thinkers and artists have always borrowed ideas and drawn inspiration from others. The Star Wars franchise, for example, was heavily influenced by old Spaghetti Westerns.
Creativity Is a Personality Type
We tend to associate creativity with certain personalities: not just artists, but also lone geniuses or eccentrics. But each one of us has the capacity to be creative regardless of our interests or job or personality. What differs is where we get our inspiration and draw creative energy from. Some folks get ideas in brainstorming sessions while others like to spend time outdoors.
Creativity Can’t Be Nurtured
Our narrative around creativity tends to stress it as an innate ability: you’re either naturally creative or you’re not. But creativity is a skill that exercises certain parts of the brain. And like any other skill, it can be developed and strengthened.