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Why it´s tough to be creative

A while ago I met a person that didn´t want to be creative and dismissed the whole concept of being creative as something "out there", something "without use in reality". Well, I´m used to this kind of comments, and I´ve heard it a thousand times. But still, I often wonder what the reasons behind it might be.

This article might give a clue...

Neurons are the building blocks of the brain. Each neuron connects with up to 100,000 neighbours in the world’s biggest cuddle! To the naked eye, neurons appear as the ‘grey matter’ of the brain. A piece of brain the size of a pin head contains approximately 60,000 neurons.

What each neuron does depends on the brain cells to which it is connected. Much of the brain’s neural circuitry is pre-programmed at birth, with networks controlling vision, memory, movement, breathing and so on. However, our experiences also influence the neural networks we develop.

For example, when you first start learning a new skill, the brain creates a new neural network, consisting of neurons containing information relating to the new skill. This information is organised as a pattern within the neural network. So the next time you perform the new task, the brain triggers the same pattern as a sequence of activity. Every time you think something, the brain searches for an established pattern of thought and triggers it. This reflects the brain’s natural ability to link, associate and connect pieces of information together in order to create a pattern of thought. Once established, such patterns of neural activity are useful because they enable us to recognise things quickly and carry out tasks automatically. Imagine how much time you would waste if you had to do a full mental analysis every time you came across a cylindrical canister of effervescent fluid. Most people would rather just open their can of fizzy drink and drink it!

Unfortunately, we get stuck in our patterns of thinking. Solutions we develop are based on previous solutions to similar problems. It’s a bit like driving from your home to the office. You get in the car, your brain triggers the pattern of thought it associates with the home-office journey and off you go, driving along the same roads day in, day out. It probably wouldn’t occur to you to break that pattern and take a new route to work.

The key to creativity is learning how to force your brain to make new neural connections by by-passing the old patterns in order to search for new ones. Knowing how your brain thinks in patterns will enable you to stimulate it to think differently and make new associations and connections.

Realise that everything connects to everything else.

Creating new ideas is a matter of association. It’s about making unexpected connections between two or more thoughts. Creative brainpower is based on your ability to make associations, links and connections between many different thoughts and ideas. Association and connection hold the secret of the way your brain thinks. It is the secret that, once you know it and understand how to use it, will reveal limitless creative treasure-troves.

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