A Guide For Creative Thinking
By: Brian Tracy
Einstein once said, “Every child is born a genius.” But the reason why most people do not
function at genius levels is because they are not aware of how creative and smart they
I call it the “Schwarzenegger effect.” No one would look at a person such as Arnold
Schwarzenegger and think how lucky he is to have been born with such tremendous
muscles. Everyone knows that he, and people like him, have worked many thousands of
hours to build up their bodies so they can compete and win in bodybuilding competitions.
Your creative capabilities are just the same. They actually grow as they are used.
But you don’t need to spend thousands of hours to increase your creative-thinking
abilities. By practicing a few simple exercises and applications, you can start your
creative juices flowing, and you may even amaze yourself at the quality and quantity of
good ideas that you come up with.
Let’s start off with the definition of creativity. In my estimation, after years of research
on this subject, the very best definition of creativity is, simply, “improvement.” You
don’t have to be a rocket scientist or an artist in order to be creative. All you have to do is
develop the ability to improve your situation, wherever you are and whatever you are
doing. All great fortunes were started with ideas for improving something in some way.
In fact, an improvement needs to be only 10 percent new or different to launch you on the
way to fame and riches.
It has been estimated that each year, driving to and from work, the average person has
about four ideas for improvement, any one of which could make him or her a millionaire.
The problem is not that you don’t have the ideas you need to accomplish anything you
want but, rather, that you fail to act on those ideas. Most people dismiss their own ideas
because they think that those ideas cannot be very valuable if they were the ones who
thought of them.
Thomas Edison, arguably the most successful creative genius in human history, once said
that creativity is 99 percent perspiration and only 1 percent inspiration. Extensive
research on creativity tends to bear him out.
There are four generally accepted parts of the creative process: There is preparation,
where much of the work is done. There is cerebration or rumination, where you turn the
matter over to your subconscious mind. There is realization, where the idea or ideas come
to you. And finally, there is application, where you work out the creative idea and turn it