All achievements, all earned riches, have their beginning in an idea.
There is no doubt that creativity is the most important human resource of all. Without creativity, there would be no progress, and we would be forever repeating the same patterns.
Edward de Bono
The world and our civilization have progressed so far due to the power of human creativity. Without creativity, there will be no progress. Without creativity , our civilization as we know it today would have been wiped out by diseases, natural disasters as well as man-made ones. Without creativity we wouldn’t be living the quality of life and enjoying the modern amenities of life in the comforts of our homes. Without creativity we wouldn’t be able to overcome present and future challenges.
The internet, in particular the social media like Facebook (www.facebook.com), blogs , YouTube (www.youtube.com), Twitter (www.twitter.com) enable us to share our creativity with the world at large. It is also an invaluable tool for us to access the creativity of the best brains in the world.
All of us are creative; we vary only in the extent to which we have developed our creativity potential.
There are three primary reasons why we need to be creative:
1. Joy and Happiness
We get more joy and happiness out of our lives when we harness our power of creativity. The more creative we are, the more we become. We continue to grow; feel more alive; become charged with enthusiasm, thus leading a more meaningful and fulfilling life. Creative effort is also an antidote to worry. And what is worry? -the wrongful use of our imagination.
Creative people love what they do. It is not the hope of achieving fame or amassing wealth that drives them; rather, it is the opportunity to do the things they love most. They feel an inner glow that exudes a sense of happiness.
We are most creative during our childhood days (see Bloom 2). This stage is also our happiest. Studies have shown that on the average the little child laughs about 400 times a day whereas the average adult laughs only 15 times per day.
Capitalizing on creativity promotes a positive outlook and sense of well- being. That boosts the immune system, which keeps us healthy. A healthy person is a happier person.
According to a Reuter’s report, creative people tend to lead a more active sex life, which researchers said was no coincidence. Their creativity seems to act like a sexual magnet. A good example is the famous artist Pablo Picasso.
A zest for life, energy, along with sexual desire, these are all qualities of those who embrace Creativity.
Few people personify happiness through creativity better than the late Walt Disney. Disney’s creations of fantasy cartoon characters such as Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, and Goofy, along with his Fun-theme parks, Disneyland and Disney World, bring joy and happiness to millions of people today. What a legacy he left.
As Alice Walker says: “Helped are those who create anything at all, for they shall relive the thrill of their own conception”.
It’s to be an adult like we are now and to look back through the windows of memory, remembering the time when we were little children, but it’s even more exciting to know that we ‘became’ the kind of people we dreamed about as children. This is called fulfillment.
Former US President, Franklin D. Roosevelt has this to say: “Happiness is not in the mere possession of money; it lies in the joy of achievement, in the thrill of creative effort.”
So what is the second important reason we need to be creative?
2. Survival and Progress
The human race has survived despite incessant threats to its existence through the application of its Creativity. Without it, we’d be dead as the proverbial Dodo. There might be other names for it, such as adaptability, innovation, inventiveness and the like, but call it what you may, in humankind, all of this is Creativity.
This fact was borne out by research conducted by Prof. E. Paul Torrance. Torrance was assigned by the US Air Force, early in the Korean War, to develop a training program that would prepare U.S. pilots and their crews to survive in war conditions. This included such situations as being shot down at sea, coming down in the jungle -or even behind enemy lines. After extensive research, Torrance was survival was something that no program at that time had ever taught – Creativity!
In the TV series “McGyver” , the hero McGyver always manages to escape from dangerous and almost impossible situations by using his creative imagination. He survives by finding new uses for the things that he has at hand, and adapting them as his escape tools.
In a landmark study of over seven hundred nuns, David Snowdon, Professor of Neurology at the University of Kentucky’s College of Medicine, USA, found that there was an 80% correlation between Creativity and the absence of Alzheimer’s disease in these nuns in old age. Eighty percent! The march of Alzheimer’s seems to be stymied by an active mind.
We humans are the only organism that is able to modify our living environment through technology. Without creativity, no technology is possible. We have progressed thus far with our technology through applying our creativity.
“Creative problem solving is the only means of survival whenever a person is faced with a life or death situation for which he has no known or practiced solution.”
“Every time we are faced with a situation for which here is no given solution we must use creative thinking.”
E. Paul Torrance
Let us move on to our third important reason we need to be creative. I’m sure it’ll draw your interest.