The summer routine of a teacher, I have to say is pretty sweet! Up this morning I pull the laptop to me click it on as I try to wipe sleep from my eyes the lights dance on the screen. Staring at the blankness in front of me nothing happens. "I've only been at this blogging business for a short while...is that really all I have to say?" Is the question that floats through my mind. Undaunted I pull up google ready to search out something good. Nothing sticks. My mind wonders as it is prone to do at 7 A.M. and then it hits me.
What is creativity? Where does its magical flow come from? I think back to times in my life where I have felt the most creative. Without blinking I know it is when I am driving. On a six hour drive from Midland to Ft. Worth streams of ideas flow through me. By the end of the drive I am as exhausted from the creating that has consumed me. For most of my life I believed it was the magic of Midland, or the west Texas roads that go on forever and take my mind with them.
Checking the blogs I regular I ran into an article from daily zen, that attributes these greatest moments to stillness. It is a zen website...pretty shocking they promote stillness. I do definitely agree there is something to it but there has to be more. Digging deeper I hit google with a mission.
After getting lost for several hours I am going to have to go with the classic history teacher response..."it is complicated." It is so complicated that you can even major in it in at Buffalo State University. The University defines creativity as a system of relationships between people, places, process and leadership. It is a university they do like to get all technical. Fast Company, looked at a study of 238 people and 12,000 journal entries explained it way better.
Creativity is not some random magical gift bestowed on the few. It is the result of the winning combination of environment, experience and skill. Creativity is not motivated by fiscal reward, an imposed due date, fear or competition. It is the result of being empowered with time to solve a problem.
Another study, by the Paul Marge Business School suggest that "storytelling excites creativity." My favorite study of the ones I read...being one who loves to tell a few stories myself. Now I understand why six hours with the music blaring, zen like thought and no time line stress make my drives to Midland most magical. Think I will have to make due in the mornings with reading a few stories I can.