Creativity and conflict may sound like an odd partnership, but they often go hand in hand.
When are you at your most creative? Is it when someone tells you that your idea is really original and outstanding or when they find a problem with your idea? It has been proven that the easier it is to think of an idea, the more true it seems. In fact, there is a popular saying that lies repeated many times are eventually believed. Therefore, the more you repeatedly defend a position, the more you believe it to be true.
And why is that? Because you take other people as a filter of truth.
You tend to think that if no one has dared to discredit you, it is because they agree with you. However, there may be many more reasons why you are not criticized. For example, maybe they are afraid of hurting you or they want to make you happy. Alternatively, they may have no idea about the topic you are interested in, or they may not consider it so important and worth starting a discussion on. However, you mentally add these people as advocates for your ideas.
Courtesy and comfort zone
You must have heard about the comfort zone – that space where you feel comfortable. It exists in every aspect of your life. However, one of the biggest problems with staying in it is that you don’t move forward. Indeed, if your social, work or personal groups avoid open criticism, they also sacrifice debate and deep discussions. In the end, while you may have a cohesive group, it will be less productive and original.
You don’t often criticize the people you love for fear of hurting them. For example, suppose your child has a school project to do. They have been asked to write an original story and when they ask your opinion, you tell them that it is perfect. In reality, you know that they misspelled some words and that the story itself is nothing more than an adapted version of The Three Little Pigs.
Still, you don’t tell them that they need to improve and change because in your eyes they are small and probably did the best they could. Still, their teacher will give an objective criticism. This will confuse them, because according to the people they know best in the world (their parents) they have done well.
This happens in all walks of life and it is certainly not a bad thing to want to protect your loved ones. However, it is good to know that there are times when pointing out some mistakes can be extremely positive.
Important aspects of criticism
When you receive criticism, you need to remember this:
Conflict and confrontation can create better ideas. This is because when you listen to other people’s points of view, you have the possibility to develop some aspects that you were not so strong in the beginning.
- You should not take criticism as a personal attack. Most criticism, good or bad, is specifically aimed at improving something and, as a rule, you are not being questioned as a person. In the rare cases where this is the case, ignore it and use your skills to be assertive.
- Passive-aggressive criticism doesn’t really work. As with the previous point, if the criticism is really passive-aggressive, then it will not be useful at all. So, discard it and don’t let it unleash the cycle of negative thinking, as it will only hurt you more at the end of the day.
- Criticism should focus only on the issue it addresses, avoiding disconnected attacks. This doesn’t mean that when you engage in a conversation you won’t get angry sometimes. However, if at any point you feel you are losing control, take some time to calm down.
It can be difficult to accept criticism, especially if the critic is not particularly good at it. This also applies to self-criticism. The first thing you need to do is to determine whether the person criticizing you is important to you and has the knowledge to do a good analysis. Then, before rejecting any idea, analyze it and determine whether it is really worth it.
The importance of creativity in everyday life
Creativity is the ability to generate new and unique ideas and products. It gives you the opportunity to see, present and explain your own point of view.
When thinking about creativity, most people contextualize it only in the art world. But creativity is used in all areas of your life, all the time. Creativity structures you and makes you unique.
Use your talent, be aware of it and apply it to your life. There is no material cost to using it, but it sharpens your brain and also trains it to come up with some amazing and original solutions.