The Basics of Creative Thinking | Can Creativity be Improved

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Creativity is an essential skill that can help us advance our careers and achieve success. But what are the basics of creativity? Can creativity be improved? Everyone has a certain level of innate creativity, and through selected approaches and creative thinking methods, you can enhance your natural creativity. This article attempts to answer your questions about the basic principles of creativity by providing actionable advice to improve creative skills. 

What is Critical and Creative Thinking?

There are several versions of the definitions for critical and creative thinking as it relates to your profession and or your avocation. 

Here we examine the version, “a process of divergent and convergent thinking that results in new ideas, approaches, and solutions to problems.” I believe critical and creative thinking go together hand in hand because it’s not always enough to identify a problem; you need to provide possible solutions as well.

Two types of creativity are distinguished here: conceptual and technical. Conceptual creativity involves discovering new concepts, such as a new mathematical relation or representation of phenomena. Technical creativity consists of the invention of new ways to apply techniques and methods in context. Technically creative thought involve the deployment of some existing process or form in an innovative way.

When coming up with new and different ideas, the main factor is adapting to a particular environment and finding ways to interpret them. Therefore, anything that stimulates our creativity can help us think differently and thus come up with new things.

Creative thinking involves ‘thinking out of the box. It means looking at a situation in an original manner without analyzing it in the usual way and or moving past our original perceptions of a problem to develop a unique solution.

We use creative thinking to solve problems, make decisions and develop new or improve existing solutions. It involves thinking from different angles, and it helps us generate answers that are not obvious at first glance. 

Creative thinkers are imaginative, original, and innovators. We can develop new ways of seeing things, thus enhancing our performance in any work environment. Creative thinking is the art of innovation to produce something valuable and practical from existing knowledge. It makes existing solutions more efficient by transforming them into better ones.

Creative thinking is a form of intelligent problem solving that can apply to any situation. It involves using logic, imagination, and insight for idea generation. Creative thinking can use it in solving a particular problem or occurrence. This can be as simple as what color or shape to use next to how do I build the world’s tallest building. 

Creativity defines a person’s resolve to find an alternate course of action. An individual or a group can think of original ideas and generate new solutions when responding to problems.

The keyword here is “new.” It relies on our intuitive knowledge and experiences. Individuals who are imaginative, original, and innovators can be considered creative. There are many methods to develop creativity in oneself as well as others. I will be discussing these skills and techniques in this article. 

What Causes Creativity?

Creativity has been a subject in disciplines ranging from psychology to economics, yet it remains a broad, ill-defined concept. As a result, researchers have begun using the scientific method to test various theories behind what causes creativity. Approaches to the study of creativity that stand up to scrutiny may lead to entirely new avenues of creativity study. Creative expression plays a crucial role in our development as individuals.

Creativity is often referred to as an idea that has some degree of novelty or inventiveness to it. The Stanford University School of Medicine calls Creativity the engine that drives progress in art, science, and business. [1] 

The creative process involves making new connections between previously unrelated concepts, facts, or ideas. It often includes novel thinking, seeing relationships among things that are not obvious, and finding original solutions to problems.

Who is a Creative Person?

A creative person thinks creatively and has the ability to think outside the box to develop new solutions for old problems. Creativity can be applied not only at work but also at home. 

Creativity is a result of high levels of dopamine in the brain. It follows that creativity is different from intelligence as it does not rely on acquired knowledge.

Creative thinking is dynamic. It varies from person to person as well as in a given context. Thus, creative thinking is appealing instead of creative people because creativity is more than an individual activity; it involves group collaboration and social interactions.

 There are three types of creative thinking activities: 

  1.  Data analysis, which is using numbers or words in a chart to sort out information; 
  2.  formulating ideas, which is using words to express thoughts; and ???
  3.  Synthesis, which is putting together bits of information into a larger whole. 

Examples of Creative Thinking Skills

The ability to have creative ideas depends on:


Knowledge is essential in creative thinking because you need information before forming new ideas and new projects. 


It is vital to visualize the solution to a problem to arrive at an original idea. A person with a great vision can create new ideas from ordinary and routine objects, like turning a piece of junk into scrap metal art.

Stress Management: Sometimes, the brain needs a rest for you to come up with different ways of thinking about a problem:

  •  Experimentation
  •  Opposing views
  •  Asking questions
  •  Communication Organization 
  • We can apply the above skills in the following examples:
  •  A group of students works on a project together. Each student has a job or responsibility to complete the project. For example, some students may be in charge of drawing up plans for the final product. 
  •  Others are responsible for organizing and scheduling the time when each step will take place. Each group member can make their mark on the final product and be recognized publicly for contributing.
  •  Examples of creative thinking include the use of props and hand gestures to get ideas across. An example of simple thinking is when you have an idea that someone already did. A simple example of creative thinking is to think about what to do if you have an idea that someone already did.

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Creative Thinking Techniques

Below are some techniques we can use to encourage creative thinking:


The Basics of Creative Thinking-Brainstorming

Brain-storming is a proven technique used for group problem solving and creativity that teams, groups, and companies, have used since the 1940s. It’s an effective way to develop ideas by collecting information from a group of people.

Participants can freely suggest ideas. However, participants must be prepared to offer opinions without judgment and consider each suggestion equally. It’s also essential that all participants are involved in the process, not just a few people who dominate the discussion. 

Despite these benefits, brainstorming may not always be the best approach to problem-solving. Several things to watch for are:

  • Some people may not participate fully because they fear they won’t be successful.
  • Some participants hold back on good ideas because they’re afraid of being judged or ridiculed. They might be shy and lack self-confidence.
  • The atmosphere can make a difference: a ‘fun,’ more casual environment will be more productive than a dull, more formal one.

Use various methods can help participants generate more valuable ideas if they apply them correctly. 

  • Formal brainstorming sessions should have a moderator.
  • The idea generator should know how to create an environment that will generate the best response from all participants.
  • Deadlines, time constraints, and goals need to be realistic: long sessions can be counterproductive if there is not enough creativity and discussion in them.
  • The idea generator should make sure that participants are committed to the process.
  • Let it be known that there are no stupid ideas; in fact, some of the most brilliant solutions come from seemingly silly ideas. You never know when then the ideas of others are going to spark the best solution.

Lateral Thinking

Lateral thinking is a creative-thinking methodology. It is an approach to problem-solving and decision making, distinguished from conventional linear logic in several ways:

  •  it works with patterns rather than single issues; 
  •  it does not force solutions into predetermined molds; 
  • it seeks multiple relationships among the elements of a set of ideas or events; and 
  • It is primarily a creative technique rather than an analytic one.

Such thinking operates on the conviction that we usually use only a tiny portion of our potential brainpower. Therefore, our innovative ideas or solutions can address problems by looking at them from different angles.

Mind Mapping The basics of creative thinking mind mapping

Mind Mapping is a visual technique for reasoning the cause and effect relationships of the different aspects of an issue and can encourage people to ask questions. Mind-mapping encourages creativity by allowing participants to see the larger picture and helps to understand cause-effect relationships of the different aspects of an issue.

Mind Mapping skills are essential for many jobs, even if workers don’t have a formal education. If you walk through the offices of corporations, you will see these maps on the walls.

Mind Maps, among other powerful tools, help people visualize complex problems where one place is to another. Learning the different mind mapping techniques is a great way to tackle large problems and processes.

Using mind mapping techniques to take notes can help us remember the material on a more visual level because the relationships between facts, questions, and answers are easier to grasp when charted and connected with lines. In addition, relationships between points make it easier to understand cause-effect relationships and find unseen patterns.

The Mind map date is an excellent way to write down a list of ideas so you can see how they relate to each other. Chunking is a fancy way of saying that you should find out which groups the information fits into and pull all related items.  

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How Can I Improve My Performance at work? 

Everyone knows how hard it is to work in a dull or unpleasant place. It’s also challenging to come up with ideas if you’re stuck in front of a computer screen for hours on end – or worse still, and you have no choice because computers crash and emails require action.

Here are some of the best ways you can stimulate my brain to create new things: 

Challenge yourself

You can try something that you have never done before, or perhaps not in a long time. It could be playing an instrument, cooking a new recipe, or even picking up a foreign language or a new Skill. Since this involves familiarizing myself with unfamiliar materials, it will help stimulate your brain. 

Write: Putting your thoughts on paper helps organize your ideas and come up with new ones. There are many ways to do it, whether to write fiction or nonfiction. When writing a story, you can be creative by developing an idea for nonfiction by writing about it and researching further on the topic to have enough information to back up your claims. 


Being exposed to new surroundings and people gives me fresh ideas because they give me a different perspective. This new perspective will help stimulate your brain into creating something new, and It has shown that a person’s creative style correlates with how they perform at work.

Practice Creative Problem Solving

Critical thinkers often don’t have enough time to practice creative problem solving, but it can leads to breakthroughs in their job if they do. Creative thinkers need to learn how to use critical thinking to break out of mental ruts while also learning how divergent thinking helps when repetitive or tedious tasks. Critical thinkers need to learn how to brainstorm. 

Everyone knows how hard it is to work in an unpleasant place. It’s also challenging to come up with ideas if you’re stuck in front of a computer screen for hours on end – or worse still, you have no choice because computers may crash.

Create a Creative Environment

Creative thinkers can sort through different perspectives and related ideas to better understand a specific problem and create innovative solutions. The more ‘creative’ your job, the more vital it is that you have an environment in which you feel comfortable and at ease so that your mind can take off on its own – or at least not be distracted by petty things like boiling kettles or dirty dishes. 

In the same way, if you’re stuck for ideas on how to end a story or design a new product, write down whatever comes into your head – however silly it is. Of course, you don’t have to use any of the ideas – but amazingly often, they’ll lead you to new and exciting places once you consider them more objectively later.

Finding inspiration

How can I use creativity to solve problems? How do critical thinkers find inspiration? Individuals frequently ask such questions in their quest to improve their career and personal performance. In this article, we tried to explore the basics of creative thinking. 

In addition to the two main aspects of creativity outlined above, creative thinking research commonly distinguishes between two types of products of the creative thinking process: novel ideas and problem solutions. A novel idea is a new concept or mental representation that was never thought about in this context; a problem solution is a previously unconsidered method or approach for addressing the issues at hand.