January 24, 2021

Resilience Series 4 – Creativity

Resilience Series 4 – Creativity

by Valerie W. Franco

Previously I’ve discussed positivity, confidence and priorities. Today’s resilience characteristic is creativity. If people have called your ideas cockamamie or absurd; if you are completely comfortable in ambiguous situations; or if you can see how a variety of answers are all correct, then you are creative. We often associate creativity with artists, authors or inventors, but creativity is also a way of finding solutions.

Polarity Thinking

A critical concept in thinking creatively is called polarity thinking. That means, instead of looking at solutions as “either this or that”, we consider “both this and that”. We open our minds to a much broader spectrum of possibilities. Let’s break down how it works. Think of a pair of words that are opposites – like courageous and cautious. Now, list 3 positive things about courageous and three positive things about cautious. Next, list 3 negative things about each word. Once the matrix is complete, step back and see if you can create an option that brings in the positives of both, and guards against the negatives. Allow all the thoughts to come forth, even the ones that sound crazy at first. You’ll be surprised at new possibilities.

So remember, you don’t have to be Picasso to THINK creatively. And the more you practice “both/and” polarity thinking to find great solutions, the more prepared you are to cope with challenges and your resilience grows.