“Creativity is seeing what others see and thinking what no one else ever thought.” – Albert Einstein
“A creative life is an amplified life. It’s a bigger life, a happier life, an expanded life, and a hell of a lot more interesting life.” – Elizabeth Gilbert
“Creativity is inventing, experimenting, growing, taking risks, breaking rules, making mistakes, and having fun.” – Mary Lou Cook.
Many people think that creativity is something that comes naturally. You either have it or you don’t. This is a common misconception that we should not believe.
There is another misconception – if you are not an artist or someone from the field of arts then you do not need to be creative. That is also a common misconception.
Creativity is especially important both for those who work in the field of arts and those who work in other fields. In this short article, we are going to answer this important question – why we do need to be creative?
Here are ten most important reasons why we need to be creative:
1. If you are creative then you can see the big picture.
The ability to see the big picture is particularly important – no matter whether we are talking about your professional career or your personal life.
2. Creativity helps people to stay motivated.
If you feel discouraged or frustrated about something there are many things that can help you regain your inspiration again. One of them is doing something creative.
Not only does it help you get rid of bad moods, and take your mind off negative things, but it also helps your mind stay engaged. You stay focused on whatever you are doing and that feeling of accomplishment and productivity makes you feel excited and motivated.
To do something creative, you do not have to author a book or make a film – it can be something amazingly simple. You can draw, you can bake, you can write a story. All these things will start the engine of your mind and give you a motivational boost.
3. Creativity is essential when it comes to problem-solving.
Whenever you are facing a difficult or complex situation and need to produce a solution, creativity is something that you need. When you start thinking creatively you can produce various effective solutions to the problem.
4. Creativity helps you boost your productivity.
As I have mentioned above, creativity is essential if you want to increase your productivity. Those people who have creative minds are often doing something or working on some project. They have an open mind, and they can make the most of anything around them.
If you are running a business, you should know that creative employees are one of the most productive ones. Their creative thinking is never-ending, they are open to experimentation and, even more importantly, they do their best to create a culture of experimentation around them. Finally, such employees have a meaningful mission that helps them keep going and pull through tough times.
5. Creativity helps people come together.
Again, this is something that business leaders need to know about. Creativity helps people come together – it fosters the spirit of cooperation and teamwork. In fact, creativity helps build a healthy, and especially mentally healthy, community.
When people are engaged in some creative project together, they speak their minds and share their views about the feeling of being judged. So that fact alone already helps bring people together.
6. Creativity helps you gain confidence and stay confident.
And in fact, there is a close link between creativity and confidence. When you are creative, you understand the many ways of understanding yourself and relating to other people.
And if you know yourself well, then you can understand what is happening around you. Creativity activity also helps to boost our self-esteem. When we are creative, we are open to new and fresh ideas. We understand what we are doing with our lives and what is our purpose. This fosters a feeling of connection with other people and a sense of belonging.
7. Creativity is important for our brain development.
When you do creative things, such as writing or drawing, various parts of your brain stay engaged. This, in turn, helps your brain improve its creative and cognitive functions. Your ability to focus and think is also getting better. Whenever you are engaged in creative activity, your brain develops extra nerve cell connections. They are especially important for children as they are responsible for their gross motor skills such as jumping, walking, running and other skills. One part of the brain called the “frontal lobe” also benefits from creative activity. This part of the brain is crucial for planning and decision-making.
8. When we are creative, we are more empathic.
In our Shiminly blog, we have already discussed the importance of emotional intelligence and how we should develop it.
Let me remind you – emotional intelligence is our ability to manage and understand our own feelings as well as those of other people. Empathy is an essential part of emotional intelligence. So how can creativity boost our empathy? In many ways.
First, we need to understand that creative people have great imaginations. So, they can imagine what other people think, what they are going through, what their life circumstances are and why they are feeling the way they do. So, creativity is an important instrument of not only understanding ourselves but others too. New fresh perspectives and solutions allow you to free your mind of preconceived notions and judgments. That is what creativity rests on.
9. Creativity improves your mental health.
Since creativity is closely related to emotional intelligence, the fact that creativity helps us relieve stress should not seem surprising. Sounds logical, doesn’t it?
Indeed, according to various researchers, if you want to get rid of stress or at least make its effect on your life less detrimental, you need to engage yourself in some creative activity. Again, the secret here is while doing something creative, our brain is simply not able to think about something negative. In this way, creative activity helps us stay in the moment and helps us be mindful of the situation we found ourselves in.
Also, one remarkably interesting fact – when we are working on a creative project, we feel a sense of emotional harmony. When we finish our project, we have a sense of fulfilment and achievement that helps us put our minds at ease. The feelings of anxiety and restlessness are gone. Finally, creative activity is important for combating depression. If you feel lonely, you will also be able to find “company” in creative activity.
10. Creativity makes us more intelligent and knowledgeable.
It helps us work with information in the most efficient way. People who like to approach things creatively are always having fun when they learn new things. Indeed, boredom can demotivate us and discourage us from learning something new. If we are creative, then we can learn in a way that people do not usually do.
There is one learning practice that creative people hold in high esteem. This practice is called brainstorming. When we engage in brainstorming, we open our minds, considering various possibilities and ideas. During this process, we are connecting different ideas and concepts and we can produce a solid and effective solution. Brainstorming can be done in a group – in this way different people can make their contribution to problem-solving.
If you would like to hear a scientific explanation, then here it is. When we feel stressed or anxious, some parts of our brain responsible for the so-called fight-flight response become activated. For the same reason, when you are focused or engaged in a creative activity, the centres of your brain responsible for fight-flight response decrease their activity. And this is how anxiety and stress are decreased.
Indeed, to some people, the link between creativity and productivity may seem unclear. Some people may refuse to believe that such a link exists at all. But it does. And in fact, there is a strong link between creativity and many other positive things. So, bear in mind, which being engaged in creative activities helps you become not only a successful person in your job, but also makes you a happier and healthier person.
Russ Gadzhiev obtained his PhD in history and politics from University of Melbourne. He also holds a master’s degree in International Relations from Moscow State University of International Relations, a top-ranking diplomatic school. Russ is a strong education professional with a history of working in the higher education sector of Australia and effectively communicates with learners from diverse cultural backgrounds. He is enthusiastic about teaching and mentoring, writing, curriculum development, research, information management and public speaking. He is fluent in Russian, English, Spanish and Portuguese.