"In the Information Age, intellectual property can be the most important asset in a business." Mary Stewart (Launching the Imagination, 110).
Who is and isn't creative? I think everyone is, to some degree. I also think creativity can be cultivated. Below are the common characteristics of creative thinkers according to Stewart.
"Creative people are open to new ideas and welcome new experiences." Judgement is something we project on people due to conditioning we've received whether that be by others or our own observations. While we can determine probability based on past events, we have to be open to the idea that we may be missing information. Just because someone is short one day, doesn't mean this person is inherently ill-tempered, it means that for that encounter their reaction was situational, and temporary to you. However, it could very well mean that they have adapted this temperament. What's clear is, we don't know. Be open to new ways of thinking about things.
"Researching unfamiliar topics and analyzing unusual systems is a source of delight for most creative people." While undertaking unknown concepts, with the intent to fully understand, can be scary, it's necessary if you want to learn, what you have set out to learn. This thing has to be self-realizing or self-serving, it cannot be what someone else wants you to learn, or what you think someone else thinks you should know, you have to want to learn it. Because you might reach a learning curve doesn't mean you should abandon this journey. Conflict or tension is present in almost everything in my opinion. During your process of learning, it's important to be honest with yourself.
Wide Range of Interests
"...an artist who has a background in literature, geology, archery, music and history can make more connections than a narrow-minded specialist." Stewart makes being a specialist sound unworthy, while it can be the opposite, however, creative people have the propensity to learn about various different areas of life. This assortment of knowledge enables us to make more connections. It's important while learning to make clear goals for your self and organize effectively.
"Realizing that every experience is valuable, creative people pay attention to seemingly minor details." My belief is that everything is interconnected. I'm constantly finding myself connected to objects like paper or materials like cement, because i think, how they can be transformed. Pay attention to the details, they're how you get to a functional big picture.
"Seeing the similarity among seemingly disparate parts has often sparked a creative breakthrough." This harks back to making connections, once we are receptive to new ideas, we see how even opposites are connected.
"Creative people value existing knowledge". Our knowledge base is built upon. Scientists build upon old ideas to extend their work, sometimes transforming those older ideas and creating something new. I've always hated the adage "Don't re-invent the wheel". I've always felt as though the wheel needs to be re-invented, especially as time progresses, however, there is something to leaving the wheel the way it is. There are some fundamentals that might not be absolutely true, albeit they can give us direction nonetheless.
"The risk-taker gets the job started; the safe-keeper gets the job done." There are a plethora of things/emotions that occur when completing a project. There's excitement, there's fear, there's passion, there's critical analysis, you may have to start over a few times, you might abandon the project, you might need to follow certain steps to get the work done, the project might require you to experiment. Either way you must continue to have focus, determination or direction and consistency. Whatever you need to do to regroup- do it.
Stewart, M. (2008). Launching the imagination. Boston, MA: McGraw-Hill.