I’ve made 3 posts so far in this series. If you wish to catch up, here they are:
In this category of creatives, we get into the outward signs of the creative mind. This is the evidence of the storm that is raging within.
You can have 20 people walk by a park setting and never notice it. It’s part of the path they walk, it’s on their way to the office. It’s a small little area that they may occasionally sit to eat their lunch when weather permits. Then there’s the creative – they don’t merely walk past it or think of it as part of the path. As they pass by the serene little setting their mind is set into motion. Why is this park here at this location? Who decided that this spot is the right spot, why not that spot over there? Who else has sat here? Is it historically significant? OOOh, what if someone was killed here, someone important. What if . . .
While they are in the office working away at whatever it is they are doing, their mind hasn’t left that small area. The gears are working on it on a back burner, asking a million questions, calculating how they are going to process the data.
The form in which this data is molded into is their unique expression. Whether it’s a sculpture, painting, sketch, story, novel, song, or poetry, the creative feels compelled to express themselves. In their art, they show the world their unique perspective.
Following are some common expressions of the creative.
a) They are constantly seeking new experiences – Creative people make a habit to expose themselves to new experiences, sensations and states of mind — and this openness is a significant predictor of creative output.
“Openness to experience is consistently the strongest predictor of creative achievement,” says Scott Barry Kaufman. “This consists of lots of different facets, but they’re all related to each other: Intellectual curiosity, thrill seeking, openness to your emotions, openness to fantasy. The thing that brings them all together is a drive for cognitive and behavioral exploration of the world, your inner world and your outer world.” ( Quote is taken from an article in the Huffington post. )
Openness to your emotions is a hard one for many people. It’s difficult to allow yourself to feel the gamut of emotions. From the highest peak of elation to the lowest gut wrenching heartbreak, it’s easier for most to dull their emotions and not allow themselves to feel. My personal thoughts on this matter are this is why many creative end up alcoholics, drug addicts, or taking some sort of prescription medications such as Xanax. It’s difficult to go through the daily grind of a regular job when you are on the emotional rollercoaster, so in order to “get through it” many resort to taking some sort of meds.
b) Self-expression – They view all of life as an opportunity for self-expression.
The creative child is the one that asks questions in class. They are the one that offers answers in class. They have an inner need to be heard, to speak up, to express themselves. They will question why they have to do something, not just follow blindly. They will speak up when they disagree with a professor.
Nietzsche believed that one’s life and the world should be viewed as a work of art. Creative types may be more likely to see the world this way, and to constantly seek opportunities for self-expression in everyday life.
“Creativity is nothing more than an individual expression of your needs, desires, and uniqueness.” Scott Barry Kaufman.
The expression or assertion of one’s own personality, as in conversation, behavior, poetry, or painting. Creatives find a way, an outlet of some sort to make certain they are heard, seen, and noticed.
“You are so busy being YOU that you have no idea how utterly unprecedented you are.”
“Never dull your shine for somebody else.”
― Tyra Banks
“Unexpressed emotions will never die. They are buried alive and will come forth later in uglier ways.”
― Sigmund Freud
“No man has the right to dictate what other men should perceive, create or produce, but all should be encouraged to reveal themselves, their perceptions and emotions, and to build confidence in the creative spirit.”
― Ansel Adams
“I want freedom for the full expression of my personality.”
― Mahatma Gandhi, The Essential Gandhi: An Anthology of His Writings on His Life, Work, and Ideas
c) Easily bored – sometimes called ADHD. They need to stay stimulated in order to stay active. They often have several irons in the fire at one time, working on their “pet” project while that iron is hot.
They won’t focus on something they don’t like. Working a factory job that is repetitious actions all day long is mind numbing and boring for most people and absolutely a brain drain for the creative.
Analytically minded persons will diligently work on Project A through completion, taking a systematic approach. Creative minded persons look at Project A, see what their part is, look at what needs to be done and promptly drop their head on the desk. Ugh! With a sigh they begin the task, organizing – whether in their mind or on a sticky note (yes, most creative have a thing for sticky notes) – a to-do list in order to complete the project. They mark their calendar with the most important data – the deadline. OOH – shiny! Did you know that on the internet you can find a virtual candy store of information? Did you? You can find facts, figures, statistics, trivia, images of your favorite stars, videos on YouTube – OH wait, I need to focus the deadline is in 2 days!
When it comes time for the presentation, the creative has finished Project A, and bound it together in a visually appealing format that is eye-catching, attention-getting and will more than likely piss off the analytically minded coworker that has not spent hours on YouTube, or taken twenty trips to the bathroom because they are addicted to coffee because they are sleep deprived because they work on their art at night when normal people are in bed asleep.
Call them ADHD or whatever you like, this is just part of their genius.
e) Always looking for new ways to express themselves. Whether you do it as a job or as a hobby or are just a creative person, you know there isn’t just one way to express creativity. If you are a photographer you’ll probably love to create in other ways. The same applies to painters, art directors, writers and every creative person in general.
A writer will try different genres. An artist will try different mediums. A musician will try a different style of music.
f) Make new experiences The part of the creative mind that is easily bored is the same part that needs to be stimulated in order to stay creative. Is there a better way to escape the doldrums than trying something new? Creatives are also the thrill seekers and adrenaline junkies of the world. Some of us, however, draw the limits at jumping out of an airplane or base jumping.
Do you relate to any of these characteristics? Do you have examples that you wish to share? Feel free to leave a comment sharing your experiences.
Write on my friends, write on!