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Creativity Triggers for College Students by Edward Glassman Ph.D.
Anti-Creativity Habits and a Fun Puzzle : Page 2 of 2

Anti-Creativity Habits and a Fun Puzzle

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You might have shifted the paradigm and gotten into other mind channels and other answers, such as:

  • Add a 6, and make 1X 6 (one times six). This equals 6.
  • Cover the top half of the IX with a thick line, and turn it upside down so it looks like this: vi
  • Move the vertical line in IX to the right and one slanting line of the X to the left to produce a distorted \/ \
  • Fold the paper through the middle of the IX, and turn it over so all you see is VI
  • These last two solutions may disturb you because I did not add a line. Try to discover what mind channel(s) grabbed your thoughts. Perhaps the following:
  • Fairness: I said add a line, and it seems unfair not to add one.
  • Making Unwarranted Assumptions: You probably assumed the added line must attach to the answer. Actually, I did not specify where or when you add the line, perhaps on the next page, or in the next edition of this book, or you could add it next week.

AN ANTI-CREATIVITY HABIT: Solutions to problems have to seem fair, fit preconceived notions, old paradigms, and unstated phantom criteria.

AN ANTI-CREATIVITY HABIT: We make unwarranted assumptions about problems and do not check them out. We stay stuck in old paradigms and old mind channels.

You trigger your mind channels and paradigms by words, remote associations, visual impressions, ideas, etc. They keep you glued to the past. Connecting new problems with old mind channels and paradigms produces the same solutions and spoils creative thinking, the closed mind syndrome.

You easily get locked into an old, ineffectual mind channel or paradigm, because you maintain it with old ideas and traditions, not by current success. Shift into new mind channels by shifting paradigms.

AN ANTI-CREATIVITY HABIT: The quick fix depends on accepting the first adequate solution to a problem, thereby denying your creative ability to find a better solution. To avoid the quick fix, set a quota for three to five different ideas before choosing a solution. Or non-evaluatively list all the ideas you can think of in a three-minute brainstorming session.

AN ANTI-CREATIVITY HABIT: One habit based on the quick fix includes rushing to generate solutions before carefully clarifying the problem (or examining alternative mind channels) to make sure you work on the right problem. You use old paradigms instead of new ones.

Old mind channels and paradigms distort current reality and produce an inability to even see other alternatives. They lead to low quality solutions if you use the wrong channel. Since they get bigger each time they successfully solve a problem, they diverge from reality as time passes. We refer to successful mind channels as 'perspectives,' while we refer to unsuccessful mind channels as 'channels.'

AN ANTI-CREATIVITY HABIT: We do not search a single mind channel for the entire range of possible new ideas.

AN ANTI-CREATIVITY HABIT: We do not explore new ideas for additional new mind channels and new paradigms.

In my book, we use advanced focused creativity triggers to alter these habits, get into different mind channels, and shift to new paradigms by clarifying problems and listing many 'how-to' problem statements. We then use idea-generating creativity triggers. And we use creativity triggers to select and combine ideas into trigger-proposals, and then into quality solutions. •

© 2011 Edward Glassman. All rights reserved.

Edward Glassman, PhDEdward Glassman, PhD was the President of the Creativity College®, a division of Leadership Consulting Services, Inc., and Professor Emeritus of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he headed the Program For Team Effectiveness And Creativity. More »

10/12/11