Strengths and Creativity

windpower.jpg For weeks now I have been examining how my mind works–where my ideas come from, ambulance how they combine to make new ideas. As a person becomes an expert at determining how they feel in any given situation– depleted or energized–and examines the feeling to discover why–she begins to recognize her thought patterns.
People always ask me what my strengths are. The thing that energizes me the most at this point in my life is the having of creative thoughts and ideas. Because I am energized by this, anesthetist I have focused on learning how I think creatively and I have set out to see if I can accelerate or improve on my own thought processes. (This quest in itself is another sort of strength I possess–it is a strength for investigation–in this case, the investigation of my own thoughts).

Recently I was in Albuquerque where after a speaking event, I had dinner with Jill and Craig Brown- two very fascinating people. Craig studies TRIZ. TRIZ research began with the hypothesis that there are universal principles of invention that are the basis for creative innovations that advance technology, and that if these principles could be identified and codified, they could be taught to people to make the process of invention more predictable. The research has proceeded in several stages over the last 50 years. Over 2 million patents have been examined, classified by level of inventiveness, and analyzed to look for principles of innovation. The three primary findings of this research are as follows:

  • Problems and solutions were repeated across industries and sciences
  • Patterns of technical evolution were repeated across industries and sciences
  • Innovations used scientific effects outside the field where they were developed.

I have identified that I have a strength in creative thinking and I have pinpointed that what gives me a rush of energy is specifically the act of synthesis. I love to synthesize. Based on the TRIZ concepts, this is what I am doing and it can be improved upon.

We want to solve problems in education? We need to synthesize ideas from out of field. It is that simple.

  1. Gary Gruber Reply

    If you link creativity with curiosity, that is a synthesis in and of itself, rather symbiotic too. For kids, it’s nurturing these gifts (or strengths if you will) cultivating them and connecting them to all sorts of opportunities, many of which exist already and others do not.
    Therefore you become a co-creator.
    As a reformer in education, I have maintained for years that the solutions to many of the education issues lie outside of education and that education will not solve the problem because it IS the problem.
    Therefore, one strategy is intervention, not rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic.

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