Archives for Innovation
One definition of emotional intelligence is "the capacity to be aware of, control, and express one's emotions, and to handle interpersonal relationships judiciously and empathetically." This skill or capacity of emotional intelligence is important for living well in general, of course, and also for individual creative expression, and for nurturing business success and innovation.
Continuing her remarks for the Emotion Revolution Summit at Yale [see Part 1], Lady Gaga noted some of the approaches she has explored to deal with her anxiety and depression, and to enhance her emotional health: "I take anti-depressant medication for it. I have tried to get off of it my doctor always tells me not to, that it's not safe for me to. "Whenever I've tried to I've gotten very neurotic, manic, sick so I have had to study all different types of ways... I started looking into Ayurvedic medicine. I started looking into meditation.
Being creative is not some kind of personality trait; you need to have more than just creative ideas or innovative possibilities, you need to actually do something in the world: record that song, write a book or article, put together a smart phone app. As author and entrepreneur Seth Godin says, “What you do for a living is not be creative, what you do is ship.”
"When we are being useless we are open to whatever comes our way." Do we need to be constantly busy and productive to be creative? In an article , Maria Hill comments about some of the values of taking a break from being so busy all the time:
“The cure for boredom is curiosity. There is no cure for curiosity.” — Dorothy Parker Curiosity fuels artistic and scientific exploration, and is a characteristic of gifted and creative people. It is also a strength and trait that encourages personal growth.
In his writings and presentations about being creative, Michael Gelb addresses many topics, including being sensitive and creative: "Every sound and every silence provides an opportunity to deepen auditory attunement; but city sounds can be overwhelming and cause us to dull our sensitivity. "Surrounded by noises from televisions, airplanes, subways and automobiles, most of us 'tune out' for self-protection."
"Imagination...discovers the real." Augusta Ada, Countess of Lovelace, was a daughter of poet Lord Byron, and worked with polymath Charles Babbage, who called her The Enchantress of Numbers. The computer language ADA was named after her, in recognition of her work that helped originate software and computers. Ada Lovelace talked about her passions for creative imagination and math: "Imagination is the Discovering Faculty, pre-eminently ... It is that which feels & discovers what is, the REAL which we see not, which exists not for our senses.
"I don't think necessity is the mother of invention. Invention, in my opinion, arises directly from idleness, possibly also from laziness - to save oneself trouble." Agatha Christie [via brainyquote.com] We may feel pressured to stay busy and keep producing, but is there some value for developing creativity in being, if not lazy, at least idle for a time?
One of the themes of creativity research, and many psychologists and creativity coaches, is how crucial beliefs and attitudes are in developing our creative abilities. Psychologist Heidi Grant Halvorson talks in the audio clip below about the prevalent idea of 'genius' for whether someone can be creative - or even aspire to be. She also writes about focus and creating, and that "to be a successful creative, you need to not only be a good generator, but also a good evaluator. The problem is that in practice, it’s remarkably hard to be both.
What seems to be a setback, error or limitation, may often be valuable for encouraging more creative thinking and innovation. Valerie Young writes about two "mistakes" that resulted in very successful products: "Did you know, for example, that Post-It-Notes were the result of what 3M Company researchers at first thought to be a bad batch of glue?