The Anchor: The Seven(?) Traits of Creative People

14 Nov,2011

We are all born creative. Remember the first months after birth. We make amazing sounds, don’t care how we look, are comfortable with our nudity, create a mess, scream like crazy and attract a lot of attention and emotion by saying words that make no sense.

These are the traits of a creative person.

Then something goes wrong. Somewhere along the way we grow up. We accept conformity as a sign of social success. We fool ourselves into believing that this is the real us – our unique voice drowned by the noise of the larger collective.

But our creativity never gives up on us. It waits inside us, dormant and patient – hoping for someone or something to let it out. Till one day we realize that ‘being creative’ is a decision. All we have to do is repeat the personal mantra “Yes, I am creative. Yes I am, yes I am creative”. And we are born again. Kicking and screaming, we proclaim our new position to the world. “I am creative!”

So this one goes out to you, the reclaimed individual, the re-arranger of dreams, the new you in the old bottle, the enlightened fool, the one who was lost and now is found. These are your habits… who am I to restrict it to seven. Why seven? You are more than a number. Who decides these numbers any way! Let’s just celebrate you: with all your limitless magical liberated traits of creativity:

1. You are a child. You resigned from adulthood long ago.

2. You are not afraid to ‘act’ like a creative person

3. Your eyes light up at a question you can’t answer

4. You are excited about unusual problems, as well as solutions

5. You make new connections. You fuse two seemingly unconnected things and give it fresh meaning

6. You generate as many answers as possible. You don’t look for the one “right answer”

7. You don’t ask if something is “logical”

8. You set aside all rules

9. You don’t judge the quality of an idea by looking at its “practicality”

10. You allow ambiguity

11. You need people

12. You are not afraid of silence. In solitude you are least alone

13. You are an observer, a social voyeur, a curious eyewitness

14. You worship nature

15. You trust your own feelings

16. You combine intuition with logic, and in conflict listen to your gut

17. You believe in play, you kick the problem like a football

18. You are emotional

19. You discover hidden meaning in information

20. You listen

21. You don’t listen

22. You’re not afraid to fail. You are willing to lose

23. You refuse to grow up

24. You take risks

25. You express your thoughts and feelings openly and freely

26. You have a crazy sense of humour

27. You are motivated by the problem itself

28. You recognize the “Ah-Ha!” experience

29. You have a high capacity for visual imagery and fantasy

30. You cry easily

31. You hate articles like this that try to define people

32. You march to your own drum beat

33. You are freedom’s child

34. You don’t take ‘no’ for an answer

35. You win


By Josy Paul, age 6 (Nov 14, 2011)

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