Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Complacency And Creativity

 I was thinking earlier today about that which keeps us from being creative. I believe that there are many obstacles to creativity, but I wanted to narrow it down to something all of us could identify with. Here's what I came up with:

Complacency is the enemy of creativity. We should constantly ask ourselves, "How can I do and be better?"

Now I know that it is very simplistic of me to state that all lack of creativity stems from complacency. I mean, who am I to make such a sweeping statement that tries to cover all of the reasons for not being creative?

I can remember as a 12 year old spending hours "tinkering" with my Dad's tools trying to make something that would cut weeds around fence posts easier. (I could have been the inventor of the weed-eater if my Mom hadn't made me go outside and get working on the weeds with the hand clippers!). Maybe I was simply motivated by the desire to get chores finished quickly.

When I consider artists and musicians, writers and poets, I venture to say that they create because they aren't satisfied with what was created before them, by others and even themselves. (I think of myself as a songwriter and find that I am motivated to write a song many times because I don't know of one that says what I'm wanting to say just right.)

When I think of engineers and architects, I have to assume that they are looking for a better, smoother, faster, more efficient way to do something.

And then I have to consider those who create just for the sake of creating, who can't help themselves but to create. Hmmmm... Could it be that there is something inside of them that pushes out and makes them be creative? (Could it be the nature of The Creator that all of us have been made in the image of?)

Well, that is how I feel: Complacency is the enemy of creativity.

How about you... What do you think keeps us from being creative?

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

I agree that complacency hinders creativity. But I've also noticed that the uncreative (or those who say they lack creativity) are many times, chronically un-curious. Your question, "How can I do or be better" was great. But really almost any question will kick-start an idea. And it's usually the 3rd answer that's the most innovative.
Brad, I really enjoyed your 12 Days of Christmas Videos. You're still a cool guy.
Wilma Haupt - Satsuma, AL

Brad Lewis said...

Wilma-
Thanks for your comment and insight (and encouragement).

I like what you said about being chronically un-curious. Hmmm... that may also be linked to complacency, and therefore lack of creativity. People have stopped asking "why?" and "why not?".

Keep sending your thoughts...

Bungi said...

Well, this ties in neatly with complacency and chrnonically un-curious.

The reason why kids tend to be more creative then adults and how this creativity keeps diminishing (for many), i believe, is because people don't come with an open mind. I believe learning or creativity stops when one thinks he/she has arrived at a place of 'i know.' To keep our creative edge i think we should remain in the place of 'i don't know but i want to know.'

In short, being open-minded and a willingness to learn are key.

Brad Lewis said...

Bungi-
Thanks for keeping the thought string going. Great insight! "I know", needs to be replaced with "I wonder".

Keep sending your thoughts...