It's Good To Know
Being creative can often make us feel high, our adrenaline and endorphins give us a buzz that helps us to express with passion. It's a good thing when used in the right way. Sometimes though, creatives like you and me can get carried away with our own reality and lose sight of sensitive issues. Art sometimes wants to upset people, art can upset people in a certain and premeditated way. Although narcissistic, this requires as much sensitivity as is needed to avoid upsetting people. Of course, we can't be responsible for the way people interpret what we have or do, however if we want to be successful then we need to think about what pains people have so we can avoid those things. Here are some great factors to consider when creating sensitively.
Care about your subject. It's not just another topic to wave your wand over, it's a real thing in a real world. Gain an holistic understanding of your subject and the people you are targeting with your ideas. We need to appreciate the fine points and understand how these are positively and negatively affected.
Don't be scary. Sounds obvious but think about it some more. You're a stranger, your work is new and different. People don't often take too kindly to strangers offering them strange things. The more normal and considerate we are, the more chance someone will give us their attention.
Feel the emotions of others. Again, we can't help have empathy and sympathy, however these things start from us. Listen to people more and instead of placing what our empathy feels in our mind, place what they are telling us they feel in our mind instead. It's usually much more accurate if we listen. Empathy is a result of our own mirror neurons imagining what it is like combined with subtle cues in body language and tone. It's not flawless and we're not all the same inside, we are all unique individuals.
Peer behind the masks. Some people pretend to be something they're not and often we can tell. Other times, we just always put our best foot forwards. This gives the impression we only have great feet. Of course this is not true, and if you look more deeply we can often see the other foot and the face behind the mask.
Be an introvert, for a bit. Spending our focus completely on the outside world gives us great people power. We feel active and part of the human machine. But we tend to not give anything much thought. When we're out there, doing our thing, we work on the assumption that our minds are made up and our knowledge is right. This changes when we go in on ourselves, we start to second guess, re-evaluate, and post judge. Once we allow this as a natural part of our personal growth, our creative output will reflect our learning.
Try not to be annoying. If something is annoying, people wont want anything to do with it. They'll roll their eyes and try to look like they're not interested at all. Everything from the wrong clothes to the wrong music can annoy the hell out of people. Noisy and obstructive environments all serve to stop someone from enjoying anything.
Nothing wrong with a night in. It doesn't have to be a party everyday, and your social circle can live without you from time to time. Back to the introvert advice,spend time away from the crowds and enjoy your own time.
Take your time with thinking. The first thing that springs to mind is often not as inventive and powerful as the next, and the next. The more we assess a situation or a problem, the more effective our ideas will become. Unless it's really urgent, put off decision making until you've given your mind enough time to really think about it.
Ruminate. Taking thinking to a new level, don't just think about something. Think around it, think about all the things that are to do with the subject. Really give the mind a whole picture with connected information.
Pay attention. The little cues going on behind the main event are just as important. The picture on the wall in the hall before the show for example. Every little detail has to be manicured and produced to reflect the spirit and the intent of what you have to offer.
We have all been there, sitting in front of a teacher who is explaining something. Unless the teacher is using all of their abilities to engage the class with exciting new toys to demonstrate what they mean, the chances are it'll be a bit dull. We usually appreciate the necessity for the lesson, we understand that we are better off knowing and so we put up with being bored. The thing is, our brains don't like being bored. In a purely neurological point of view, without the element of excitement and play, the brain is simply not at full speed.
It's been demonstrated by scientific means that doodling, or drawing random images, while listening to a lecture actually improves recall. We seem to remember the information better if we occupy the playful part of our mind. Maybe it's something to do with curbing the day-dream, by pinning the consciousness into the room on something within the context of learning, we prevent it from taking over and blinding us to the lecture.
Back in 2009, a psychologist called Jackie Andrade performed an experiment in which 40 people were tested for memory recall. They were given a rambling voicemail to listen to, and half the group were asked to doodle while listening. The benefits were clear, those who focussed their creative side on the simple activity had better information to repeat back to the examiner. They heard and then remembered more of the voicemail.
If we consider all the things we may imagine when in a school environment, the pressures and the strains of the high density of youth can be overwhelming. If you're like me, then the mind simply doesn't perform well with all the plethora of issues faced in such places. The continual input and emotional background noise in high-speed and authoritarian institutions is like a thick soup we have to cut through somehow every time. Doodling can actually help us to do that.
So remember that our mind is not simply a one river device, but it has many tributaries. If we want to focus on the main input then we have to put the tributaries to work on something that keeps us in the room. An engaging and exciting lesson of course has all the calling cards our mind will need but in the real world, it's simply out of the ordinary to constantly provide new stimuli.
Another great way to get past the distracting evnironment often associated with learning is to choose to study online. If you can manage your own time without much reminding then it can be really easy to acquire new professional or personal skills. Why not browse some digital courses now and see what you could learn?
Rowan Blair Colver for Alternative Fruit
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