Week Forty Seven [The Final Six]

It is the pursuit that counts, not the attainment.

The book: Creativity: Flow & Psychology of Discovery and Invention by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi

The memory: 

I’m now 90.38% complete with this project. I created this project for myself so that I can practice the art of vulnerability through sharing personal thoughts and feelings, of which I’m no good in real life. It’s easier through an almost anonymous public forum such as this; sharing makes me exhausted and expressing my feelings leaves me drained. I’ve been mulling over this entry for a week now, but there’s nothing to express.

Thus, all I’d like to do today is share a bit with you a snippet from this wonderful book. It’s probably my fifth or sixth book on the topic at hand for my research, but it’s in my top five for this year. A truly delightful read.

According to Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi,

THE TEN DIMENSIONS OF COMPLEXITY OF CREATIVE INDIVIDUALS:

  1. Creative individuals have a great deal of physical energy, but they are also often quiet and at rest.
  2. Creative individuals tend to be smart, yet also naïve at the same time.
  3. A third paradoxical trait refers to the related combination of playfulness and discipline, or responsibility and irresponsibility.
  4. Creative individuals alternate between imagination and fantasy at one end, and a rooted sense of reality at the other.
  5. Creative people seem to harbor opposite tendencies on the continuum between extroversion and introversion.
  6. Creative individuals are also remarkably humble and proud at the same time.
  7. In all cultures, men are brought up to the “masculine” and to disregard and repress those aspects of their temperament that the culture regards as “feminine,” whereas women are expected to do the opposite. Creative individuals to a certain extent escape this rigid gender role stereotyping.
  8. Generally, creative people are thought to be rebellious and independent. Yet it is impossible to be creative without having first internalized a domain of culture. And a person must believe in the importance of such a domain in order to learn its rules; hence, he or she must be to a certain extent a traditionalist.
  9. Most creative persons are very passionate about their work, yet they can be extremely objective about it as well.
  10. Finally, the openness and sensitivity of creative individuals often exposes them to suffering and pain yet also a great deal of enjoyment.

We’re all a little complex, and we’re all at least a little creative. Do any of these describe you?

End, Memory Moment Forty Seven.

Next Week: Creating Minds: The Anatomy of Creativity by Howard Gardner

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