.: 8 February 2015 :.

My three steps to finding creativity

Going through the creative process is an exciting adventure. I like to think of myself as a treasure hunter on a quest.

I start my journey by entering unfamiliar terrain. It can be scary sometimes but it always brings me to unexpected places.

Carefully I start scanning my surroundings. Opportunities can easily be overlooked. I explore many routes, most of them leading to dead ends. These are not worthless though, they help me to map my environment.

Even tough I am not finding what I am looking for, the belief that there is a treasure keeps me going. Right when I am not expecting it, I stumble upon something incredibly valuable.

Even tough I am not finding what I am looking for, the belief that there is a treasure keeps me going.

I look at creativity as a search for opportunities.
These are my three steps to creativity:

1. Search a lot

Don’t expect to find value right away. You will need to be patient. It is very easy to get discouraged when you are not finding what you are looking for, but the more you try, the higher the chance of success. Don’t start questioning your own skills either, because the belief that your are creative will make you creative. What always keeps me going is the belief I will eventually find a treasure when I totally immerse myself in the process.

2. Search in unfamiliar places

You can search a lot, but if you keep searching in the same places, you are not very likely to find something new. Therefore you also need to search in unfamiliar places. These places can take any form, they can be physical, mental and even virtual.

It can be quite scary to enter unfamiliar terrain. The feeling that you are losing control can make you uncomfortable. Don’t try to fight the uncertainty but acknowledge and embrace it. Allow yourself to be surprised. The more you deal with uncertainty, the more comfortable you will get.

Don’t try to fight the uncertainty but acknowledge and embrace it.

3. Search well

You can search a lot, even in unfamiliar terrain, without succes. Why? Because you are not searching well.

It is much easier to overlook creative opportunities than to see them. Instead of constantly moving from one design space to another, try to move really slowly. The will reveal what you consider as common sense, enabling you to question it.

Instead of constantly moving from one design space to another, try to move really slowly.

Besides that, keep changing perspective. Within the creative process you might not see the greater whole. I think that reflection is crucial in order to process what you found.

Conclusion

I think that creative success comes if you are patient, embrace uncertainty and move slowly with your eyes open. Just let your intuition guide your adventure. I think that the more you practice, the more sensitive you become to opportunities. Have a good trip!

© 2018 Martijn van den Broeck
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