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Orna Ross : On Creativity and Eight Habits of The Creatively Intelligent

On Creativity and 8 Habits of The Creatively Intelligent

By Orna Ross

Why You're Not More Creative

We'd all be more creative if we paid less attention to the surfaces, our doings and achievements, our ambitions and desires; and more attention to the depths, the hidden forces and faculties that lie within ourselves and others, within all things and all experiences.

We insist on burnishing our worries and wants and wishes, until we are blind to what's in front of our eyes. We insist on resounding our opinions, until we've drowned out the whispers of our hearts.

So we fail to see the true visions, to hear the sound of other spheres.

And the eternal stream folds back into the infinite nothing, from whence it came, having flowed past our skin instead of through our blood.

Eight Habits of The Creatively Intelligent

Creative Intelligence is not a "given" but a process, a practice. An approach to living.

Here are habits of living that all creative people have fostered in themselves:

  1. Ask Questions
    What if? Why? Why not? How? How many of the world's great inventions or artworks would never have happened if their creators hadn't asked.

  2. Embrace Change
    It's happening, whether you like it or not. Might as well love it.

  3. Don't Pre-judge
    Discernment is important — but only at the end. Let the beginning be a field of open possibility.

  4. Look on the Bright Side
    Does being creative make you positive? Or being positive make you creative? Contrary to popular opinion, the research says: both.

  5. Welcome Problems
    Creative people see problems as natural and normal — they're drawn to them, wanting to fix them, to "make" a solution.

  6. Confront Challenge
    Becoming more creative means stepping out of your comfort zone — aka your stagnation pool — and s-t-r-r-r-e-t-c-h-ing yourself.

  7. Stick at It
    Successful creatives are all agreed: resilience and persistence were more important to their success than talent.

  8. Be Flexible
    Go with the flow, the flash, the flux: they are the stuff that brilliance is made of. •

© 2009 Orna Ross. All rights reserved.

Orna RossOrna Ross is an Irish novelist and creative nonfiction writer. She has taught creative principles, writing and freewriting to many disparate groups — from addicts in recovery to MA students and has facilitated creative and publishing success for many writing students. More »