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Medical How can you boost your creativity.

  1. Oct 5, 2006 #1
    How can you "boost" your creativity.

    " Imagination is more important than knowledge " Albert Einstein.

    Then, the question is how could you improve your "creativity", of course i believe you must make an effort but..how? :confused: :confused: is there a formula for creativity or learning?.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 5, 2006 #2
    Creativity and learning are two different things, almost opposites in important ways. I'll get back to that.

    There isn't a formula for creativity, but there are specific kinds of exercises you can do to cultivate it. The best to start with is the same kind of free association Freud developed for psychoanalysis. You lie down, get as comfortable as possible, and speak your stream of consciousness out loud. You say whatever comes into your head: censor nothing, everthing is valid and permitted.

    You can do the same in a written version: just sit down and write out your stream of consciousness.

    Back when I was studying theater in college we did an excercise called a "body river." This involved both speaking and moving to your stream of consciousness. Not acting it out, but accompanying it with whatever physical gestures your body felt like doing.

    The reason excercises like these work is because everyone is already very creative but we all have learned to put a lid on it for, pretty reasonable, social reasons. In one of these exercises it would be perfectly OK to spew a stream of obscenities or digress into repeating the peculiar word "pupae" over and over. You can't do that in most social settings. Even close friends won't tolerate everything a person feels like doing. But to be creative a person has to feel perfectly at ease exploring any weird notion that pops into their head. So you set aside a "safe" time and place to do this. What comes out is all raw material that has to be picked through later and edited. Most of it, most of it is junk and you throw it away: to get to the diamonds, you have to dig up alot of dirt.

    Creativity is wedded to the act of self expression. You are letting the stuff inside you out. Learning is the opposite: you put your self to rest and let the outside world in. You allow yourself to listen to and understand information from people and sources outside yourself. I think learning is harder. It requires more sustained attention and discipline.
     
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2006
  4. Oct 6, 2006 #3

    Mk

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    How does this improve creativity? I have done this for fun for a while, because it is interesting. It sure is difficult to keep it going in a straight line!
     
  5. Oct 6, 2006 #4
  6. Oct 6, 2006 #5
    You're not supposed to go in a straight line!!!!!
     
  7. Oct 6, 2006 #6
    Now Im not too sure about this but when Im on weed I feel that I can think more openly and kind of understand different things better. Im not too good at math when Im high but my philosophy thuoghts are more open and stuff. Same goes with lsd pretty much, but you see stuff along with the thoughts on lsd, thats the downside. Watch fear and loathing in las vegas and youll know what Im talking about.
     
  8. Oct 6, 2006 #7

    Mk

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    But it is even harder to go all branchy!! Because you have to forget thoughts and abondon them! You don't restart from the beginning do you?

    As in,
    A to B, C, D,
    B to E, F
    F to Q, Z,

    Do you go back to C and D? How thorough do you go?
     
  9. Oct 6, 2006 #8
    You go where it goes. You don't try to direct it. Anything goes. It's not supposed to be organized or logical. Direction, organization, and logic are what have been stifling your creativity. When you do these exercizes, stop making sense.
     
  10. Nov 15, 2006 #9
    What to do to improve creativity? IMHO the best way is to get a rid of routine. Stop doing everything in the same way everyday! Secondly try to stop dreaming during whole the day. OF course training imaginery is also very important but not doing so unconsciously all the time. Dont think what will be in the future or what has already been in the past. Just concentrate on what is now, notice all your surroundings as much as it's only possible. You may be wondering why does it work. Well im not sure how to simply explain it, moreover im too sleepy to have a try doing that ;-) Just believe me, i've experienced it by myself many times. It's really a very good stuff which make your perception quite different and can help to become more creative as well.
     
  11. Nov 15, 2006 #10
    By seizing every opportunity for self-growth.

    I got my hair cut in a park last week for free by a man I'd never met who stoped me on the sidewalk and said he wanted practice before he set out to Europe in two-days time (on a series of odd-jobs). While I didn't actually do the cutting, it brightened my perceptions and spirit.

    That was a momentary encounter... but I try to make the continuous threads in my life of the same cloth.
     
  12. Nov 15, 2006 #11

    LURCH

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    I tried writng with my left hand for a year. It seemed to increase my creativity some. And not only did I stimulate my own left brain, but that of anyone trying to decifer my papers!
     
  13. Nov 16, 2006 #12
    improvement awaits

    the first step to improving creativity .. is to learn more about it (books ,internet etc, tv documentaries --these things will standout if u look out for them) ..
    :smile:
     
  14. Nov 16, 2006 #13
    I agree my imagination is way more in control when high. I find my self thinkin about the most random stuff and then i find myself in a trance with all kinds of crazy thoughts. Being high is deffinatly a method of increasing imagination.
     
  15. Nov 16, 2006 #14

    berkeman

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    A book by Polya that I read back in high school helped me a lot in my problem solving, including some mental tricks and approaches to problem solving that helped my overall creativity significantly.

    http://www.amazon.com/How-Solve-Mat...pd_bbs_12/102-6119805-5969735?ie=UTF8&s=books

    Beyond that, seek out puzzles, problems and projects in your areas of interest, and on-purpose work on creative and unusual solutions. As long as they are in your areas of interest, you will find that you enjoy putting in the extra time and effort to come up with creative solutions. And after you start doing it more, then the creative angle will pop up in many of the things you do.

    Like in this thread today about how to weigh an object without a scale....

    https://www.physicsforums.com/showthread.php?t=144159
     
  16. Nov 16, 2006 #15

    chroot

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    berkeman,

    I actually have a copy of Polya's book at home, but I've never read more than perhaps 30 pages of it. The presentation of a teacher talking to a roomful of students seemed like a contrivance to me, and I was put off reading it because the format annoyed me to no end. On the other hand, many people I respect (including you) have told me this book contains great wisdom, so I may have to pull it off the shelf and try to give it a more determined reading.

    - Warren
     
  17. Nov 16, 2006 #16

    berkeman

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    To be honest, it was so long ago that I read it, I don't remember anything about the style. It was also when I was in high school, so I was probably more tolerant of different teaching styles back then. I do mean to find a copy sometime and look back through it.

    A couple of the things that still stand out in my mind from that early read -- when you are confronted with a difficult problem, try turning it around, or upside down, or sideways, or inside-out. If it's a mechanical problem, this is straightforward, but if it's a problem in math or physics or EE or whatever, often the meaning of "turn it upside-down" is different. There have been so many times when I've used this class of tricks on difficult problems, and found a solution that was opposite or sideways in some way.

    There are probably other better problem-solving books out there too. I guess my main point was for the OP to do some reading about problem solving, and use some of the tricks that are taught to help boost his "creative" approach to problems.

    Creativity without problem solving wouldn't seem to be all that useful (well, except maybe for standup comics -- have you been watching "Who's Line Is It Anyway?" lately? That's some funny stuff!)
     
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