Thursday, January 24, 2019

Creativity and Humility

Humility energizes curiosity and curiosity ignites creativity.

All humans have a creative/artistic side while also have a curious/scientific side, bestowed with three basic instincts which are humility (egoless awareness and acceptance), curiosity (restlessness with the status quo), and creativity (urge to change or improve the status quo). Amazingly, these three basic instincts are intertwined. Humility energizes curiosity and curiosity ignites creativity.

Without humility, curiosity is feeble and without curiosity, creativity is ineffectual: An inquisitive mind with confidence does not accept things at face value and find a better or alternative solution. Being humble with a beginner's mind to ask questions stimulates creativity. The clear manifestation of intellectual curiosity is to ask good questions, the open questions, the profound questions, or the thought-provoking questions. Truly curious people are more interested in what they don't know rather than just providing answers to show what they do know. Intellectual curiosity is one of the key ingredients to spark innovation. Listening to others' input with humility may be useful to facilitate deep empathy which, in turn, facilitates creativity seeds. Humility is not about being unsure or fear to try new ways to do things. Rather, it speaks to a person’s openness to feedback, learning agility and continuous improvement. In simple words, without humility, curiosity is feeble and without curiosity, creativity is ineffectual.

Egoless awareness and acceptance: Many people confuse confidence with ego. Ego is tied to self-esteem and balance. Too little ego has one not believing in oneself. But too much ego turns into arrogance. The pendulum can swing to either side. Reduce that pendulum swing so that it doesn't sway too far from the center--BALANCE.  It is good to be confident in a natural way and there is no egotism in that. When you identify with your higher self, strength, spirit, or some other definition of the higher part of you which is not ego, you feel totally at peace to keep mind flow and stimulate creative energy. However, when trying to cover up your inner weakness or fear of being seen for who you really are, there is definitely an ego. Too much ego has one thinking too much of oneself--minimizing, marginalizing and dismissing the perspectives of others. Being humble is not lack of confidence, but knowing and being confident of your strengths and gifts; knowing where they come from and being grateful for them and most importantly using them, and being willing for looking to others to help you reach your goal instead of going it alone. If you are humble, you are open to learning both about yourself, others and love new ideas. Talking and actively listening to one another also creates excitement which propels good ideas to be formed.

Humility builds trust, and trust enforces creativity: Humility allows one to understand oneself, understand others, strike the balance of being confident and being humble, self-worth and the worth of others. By managing the ego well, we can empty our mind of how things are "usually" solved, practice deep listening skills, understand the circumstance profoundly. In this way, we are able to be assertive and stay the course. Not lose focus and allow emotions to get in the way of teamwork and team growth. Because we all filter information differently based on our experiences, sharing ideas gives depth and shapes a well-rounded concept. It also allows new pieces of information to be synthesized to generate new knowledge and abstracted to the unique insight and novel ideas, as well as how much we can make space for others. It requires great self-awareness, keep asking what is needed in this situation. Deep listen; make room for others to discover their own insights; or give room for their perspectives to emerge to the collective creativity. Therefore, it is important to create and nurture an environment in which humility is appreciated, curiosity is encouraged, and creative thinking is rewarded.

Each one of us has an unknown amount of creativity, innovation, and productivity as well as an unknown amount of intelligence, knowledge, experience, and energy. Strike the right balance of confidence and humility to explore unknown, ask thought-provoking questions, and develop creativity diligently.


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