Seeking Patterns - Deepstash

Seeking Patterns

While applying old lessons to new situations can limit your creativity, the brain’s inclination for seeking patterns can encourage innovation, too.

This will serve you well in creative thinking as long as you question your assumptions and try to find patterns where there aren't any.

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MORE IDEAS FROM How To Boost Your Creativity The Einstein Way-With Combinatory Play

... use combinatory play to give your brain a boost:

  • Participate in creative cross-training to expand your brain’s neural connections.
  • Let your mind wander by doing something mundane, like taking a shower.
  • Go to bed and let your subconscious mind connect the dots during REM sleep.
  • Use another person’s work as a springboard for inspiration and improvement.

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If you’re feeling stuck on a problem, try going to bed. You just might have a more creative solution in the morning.

When we’re in REM, our brains are better able to integrate unassociated information, which is essential to creative thinking (and can explain why dreams are so bizarre).

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Get inspired by someone else’s creations:

  • If you’re suffering from writer’s block, buy a pack of word magnets and rearrange them until you come up with creative phrases on your fridge.
  • If you’re building a product and you're stuck in the design phase, search for competitors who have made similar products, find where their customers are unhappy, and design something new that solves the problems your competitors failed to address.

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The brain’s building blocks are neurons: nerve cells that receive and transmit signals along neural pathways. Certain pathways are forged at birth. Others can be manipulated by learning. 

So when you’re stuck in a rut, your brain’s neurons could literally be stuck on a neural pathway you’ve carved out through your behavior. But you can get unstuck by choosing to make new connections.

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Your brain is continually striving for predictability, and it can get pretty set in its ways. When a novelty appears, the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) part of your brain is wired to review old rules and apply them to this new situation. It does not want to invent new ways if it can help it. This can hinder your creativity.

Combinatory play can help with quieting this part of the brain by relaxing your mind.

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Combinatory Play

We’ve all experienced that flash of insight, that fleeting moment when a solution we’ve been grinding away at reveals itself in an unexpected place.

Einstein, for example, was known to play violin whenever he was stuck on a tough problem and often spoke of how music influenced the way he thought about math and science.

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Try a new activity within your field or related to it; you’ll expand your neural connections and strengthen your brain overall.

If you’re a novelist, try your hand at poetry. If you’re a painter, dabble in sculpting. If you’re a computer scientist, play around with web design.

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Doing something boring, like showering, doesn’t require substantial cognitive effort, so our brains are free to wander. 

And a brain “at rest” isn’t really resting at all. Mind-wandering may allow the conscious to give way to the subconscious, so the brain can connect disparate ideas.

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Steve Jobs
“Creativity is just connecting things.”

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RELATED IDEA

The 'Eureka' moment

Eureka moments may seem unpredictable and unreplicable. But there are ways to coax these inspired ideas from their hiding places. One of the best is to take a break from thinking about a problem or dilemma.

They are linked to the story of Archimedes and the gold crown ( when he realized while taking a bath that he can use displaced water to assess the density of the king's crown and, therefore, its gold content).

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What is creativity

Creativity is taking what's already present and connecting them in ways that haven't been done previously.

  • Research suggests both creativity and non-creativity are learned. Some people are more primed than others to be creative but nearly every person is born with some level of creativity and majority of creative thinking abilities are trainable.
  • "I'm just not the creative type" doesn't truly exist. 
  • The creative process:
  1. Gather new material.
  2. Look at the facts from different angle trying to fit various ideas together.
  3. Do something totally unrelated that excites & energizes you.
  4. Let the idea return to you.
  5. Shape & develop the idea based on feedback.

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Don‘t fear of Creating junk ..

Compelling is like being a gold miner. You have to sift through pounds of dirt and rock and silt just to find a speck of gold in the middle of it all. Bits and pieces of genius will find their way to you, if you give yourself permission to let the muse flow .

Sometimes you have to create many ideas just to find one best idea . So don't fear of Creating those junk ideas .

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