iServi News | 7 August 2020 | Term 3, Week 3
Character Strength Spotlight: Creativity
Today’s spotlight is on Creativity.
Provided by Cat Lamb, a consultant with the Institute of Positive Education at Geelong.
Creativity is a strength which is closely related to other strengths of Wisdom, including Curiosity, Perspective, Open-Mindedness and Love of Learning. These strengths are cognitive, and involve gaining and using knowledge to benefit yourself and others.
Three important reasons to be more creative …
- Creativity predicts a longer life.
In this Scientific American article, “researchers found that only creativity—not intelligence or overall openness—decreased mortality risk. One possible reason creativity is protective of health is because it draws on a variety of neural networks within the brain.” James Clear cites studies and research that demonstrate creating art decreases negative emotions, reduces stress and anxiety, and improved medical outcomes. Not only can being creative help you live longer, but it can improve your quality of health and life too.
- Creativity helps to solve problems.
Being creative helps you become a better problem solver in all areas of your life and work. Instead of coming from a linear, logical approach, your creative side can approach a situation from all angles. Creativity helps you see things differently and better deal with uncertainty. Studies show that creative people are better able to live with uncertainty because they can adapt their thinking to allow for the flow of the unknown.
- Creativity develops confidence.
Being creative comes with many ups and downs and a high risk of failure. Engaging in the creative process is a great confidence builder, because you discover that failure is part of the process. Once we see failure as something that is survivable, and something that helps us grow and that it makes our work better, we can release the fear and try new things even at the risk of failing.
Some suggested Creativity activities:
- Could you complete a normal activity in a completely new way?
- Think of a different use for a normal household item, like a salad bowl or soup ladle?
- Suggest a change to a space to help engage more effectively in learning.
- Recognise and celebrate the ways you are already being creative or adaptable.
- Consider a hobby that allows you to be original and creative, like baking or drawing.
Three things to try:
Book – Originals: How Non-Conformists Move the World Forward, Adam Grant
Podcast – Dr Scott Barry Kaufman on Everyday Creativity
TED Talk Playlist – TED talks about Creativity
The Institute of Positive Education at Geelong Grammar has produced a 24-part mini-podcast series on Character Strengths. Each episode explores one of the character strengths in order to recognise, utilise and celebrate it in our daily lives. To listen to the Creativity podcast, click here.
Mrs Franca Coutts
Vice Principal – Community