The Neural Grind

In the trenches of the neural tug-of-war

Category: Creativity

Everything That Needs to Be Said Has Already Been Said

But you can re-frame it and put it in a different perspective. That’s what writing, or any creative output is all about.

Some days, doing any creative endeavour can feel meaningless, especially when we start to think “this has been done before”. Of course it has, but why should that discourage us? André Gide said “Everything that needs to be said has already been said. But since no one was listening, everything must be said again.” 

That’s important to remember, every single time you try to make something new. It’s not really new, but it’s yours. It’s a little different, and most likely it bears repeating because not everyone heard it the first time.

Don’t ever let the feeling that it’s been done before hold you back. Just remember to give it your own voice.

I write about personal growth, psychology, leadership, relationships and soft skills at The Neural Grind.

How to Make an Elevator Travel Ten Times Faster

A large New York building had lots of complaints about their elevator — it was too darn slow, and people wanted to know if something could be done about it.

The owners started a process trying to find engineers who could solve the problem, but no matter which experts they spoke to everyone said the same thing: they simply couldn’t make it go any faster. It was physically impossible.

Until one creative individual suggested: how about we install a mirror? They did, and never had a single complaint about the elevator speed again.

The lesson here is that we’re all guilty of looking at the solution to our problem in the wrong way and in all the wrong places.

I write about personal growth, psychology, leadership, relationships and soft skills at The Neural Grind.

Being Creative Is Not the Same as Being Artistic

When I tell people that I either work with design or music, they often reply: “Oh, you must be very creative!”. I usually tell them designing websites requires less creativity than building a bridge or selling ice cream.

In my view, there’s nothing more creative about writing music or designing a website than working as an engineer, working in sales or as an accountant. These are all creative professions, or at least they should be. Being creative is to me all about how good you are at your job, no matter what you do for a living.

Every job requires you to, often daily, to find solutions to unforeseen problems. That’s where creativity comes in. Writing music is a craft, and anyone can learn that skill without being especially creative. Same goes for every other “creative” profession. However, getting noticed, making people talk about what you do, creating something different that makes a difference, changing the status quo, overcoming obstacles — that requires true creativity and is rare.

I wish we could agree on a new definition of the word “creative”. It’s not the same as being “artistic”. That way, maybe more people would actually focus on learning how to actually be creative and solving problems that need solving.

I write about personal growth, psychology, leadership, relationships and soft skills at The Neural Grind.

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