What is a Creative Personality?
An illuminating article I read says: Creative individuals are remarkable for their ability to adapt to almost any situation and to make do with whatever is at hand to reach their goals. Of all human activities, creativity comes closest to providing the fulfillment we all hope to get in our lives. Call it full-blast living."
It goes on to say that ... Most of the things that are interesting, important, and human are the result of creativity and individual ingenuity. That is what makes us different from apes. We have our language, our values, our artistic expression, scientific understanding, and technology. We recognise and reward achievements and we transmit information and knowledge through learning.
The author has devoted 30 years of research on how creative people live and work, and to make more understandable the mysterious process by which these creative people come up with new ideas and new things.
Creative individuals are complex people. They contain contradictory extremes; instead of being an "individual," each of them is a "multitude."
The author goes on to list 10 antithetical (opposite) traits often present in creative people that are integrated with each other.
1. Creative people have a great deal of physical energy, but they're also often quiet and at rest. This does not mean that creative people are hyperactive, always "on." One manifestation of energy is sexuality. They seem to have quite a strong dose of eros, or generalized libidinal energy, which some express directly into sexuality.
2. Creative people tend to be smart yet naive at the same time. How smart they actually are is open to question. It is probably true that what psychologists call the "g factor," meaning a core of general intelligence, is high among people who make important creative contributions.
3. Creative people combine playfulness and discipline, or responsibility and irresponsibility. There is no question that a playfully light attitude is typical of creative individuals. But this playfulness doesn't go very far without its antithesis, a quality of doggedness, endurance, perseverance.
4. Creative people alternate between imagination and fantasy, and a rooted sense of reality. Great art and great science involve a leap of imagination into a world that is different from the present.
5. Creative people tend to be both extroverted and introverted. We're usually one or the other, either preferring to be in the thick of crowds or sitting on the sidelines and observing the passing show. In fact, in psychological research, extroversion and introversion are considered the most stable personality traits that differentiate people from each other and that can be reliably measured. Creative individuals, on the other hand, seem to exhibit both traits simultaneously.
6. Creative people are humble and proud at the same time. It is remarkable to meet a famous person who you expect to be arrogant or supercilious, only to encounter self-deprecation and shyness instead.
7. Creative people, to an extent, escape rigid gender role stereotyping. When tests of masculinity/femininity are given to young people, over and over one finds that creative and talented girls are more dominant and tough than other girls, and creative boys are more sensitive and less aggressive than their male peers. This tendency toward androgyny is sometimes understood in purely sexual terms, and therefore it gets confused with homosexuality.
8. Creative people are both rebellious and conservative.
9. Most creative people are very passionate about their work, yet they can be extremely objective about it as well.
10. Creative people's openness and sensitivity often exposes them to suffering and pain, yet also to a great deal of enjoyment. Most would agree with Rabinow's words: "Inventors have a low threshold of pain. Things bother them." A badly designed machine causes pain to an inventive engineer, just as the creative writer is hurt when reading bad prose.
There you have it, the gist of what makes up a creative person. For an indepth understanding, you may want to read the article in its entirety, The Creative Personality
Still on the subject of Creativity, let me share with you an artistic expression of creativity - an awesome ukulele rendition of (Beatles), George Harrison's "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" by Jake Shimabukuro.. Enjoy!
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