What Is Creative Thinking – Definition and Explanation
Creative thinking is the ability to produce fresh ideas to solve problems, look for alternatives and improve processes or simply to create something artistically beautiful that has emotional value.
The most important skill for creative thinking is the ability to connect seemingly unrelated information into novel solutions, or new ideas. This kind of thinking is called associative thinking.
Everybody can use associative thinking to search for new ideas. It is a skill like any other. However, to some people associative thinking comes naturally and without much effort, so they are more versatile thinkers than the others who need to put more effort into creating new ideas.
Without creative thinking, there can be no innovation. Even small ideas can sometimes make a significant impact on improving existing products and processes. On the other hand, groundbreaking ideas often seem simple and perfectly logical – this is what makes them so outstanding – but they are always a product of vast knowledge and hard thinking.
Creative thinking is what moves civilisation forward. If everybody thought in the same way, using traditional thinking patterns, no scientific or engineering invention would ever be possible, and the society would not evolve. Creative thinking in the field of arts challenges human spirit and opens psychological and spiritual insights which help us understand the world around us and ourselves as human beings.
The world we live in is changing at a remarkable pace. The technology we use today will probably be obsolete in ten years and many jobs that exist today will become redundant, while new will emerge. That is why scientists agree that in future, creative thinking will become one of the most important personal skills. It will help individuals navigate through their life and career as changes and challenges of reality become more complex and difficult to cope.
If you are interested to learn more about the creative process, please check out the Deciphering Creativity podcast serial where I explain in details how ideas are created, what is Inspiration and what skills and habits you should develop if you want to become a better creative thinker.
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