How analytical skills can help you find your creative muse
While analytical can be seen as creative’s opposite, you actually need both in order to find your muse. Creative thinking can help you come up with many possible solutions or ideas. Analytical thinking can help you whittle these ideas or solutions down helping you find the one that best serves your creative goals.
I know what you are thinking…
Here we are, talking about creativity and here I am, bringing up the analytical which is pretty much the complete opposite of what it means to be creative. Analytical thinking means to take the idea and to whittle it down until you arrive at only one logical answer. Creative thinking means to take an idea and expand upon it until you have many different possible answers. One is convergent, while the other is divergent. How can they possibly complement one another and help you find you muse?
Well, imagine you are a farmer with a hungry dog…
To be more specific: a farmer with a hungry dog who is coming home with your prized goat that just won a blue ribbon at the county fair. On the way home, you stop at the general store to pick up a big bag of oats for the missus. Now, here is the kicker, the farm is across a river and the bridge is out. The boat that you use to cross the river has only enough room for you and one other thing. This means that you need to leave the other two behind as you cross.
So here is the problem…
If you leave the goat behind with the oats, the goat is going to eat them and if you leave the hungry dog behind with your prized goat, the goat becomes the meal. So how are you going to get all three things safely across?
The answer to this little riddle can be solved by utilizing both analytical and creative thinking processes. Using you creative thinking skills you can imagine all the possible scenarios involved in getting all three things across the water such as bringing the goat first and leaving the dog and the oats, or letting the dog eat the goat while you bring oats across first, or taking the dog first and letting the goat eat the oats, etcetera. After coming up with as many possible solutions, you can then use analytical thinking in order to whittle down all the possible scenarios in order to come up with a creative solution in order to keep both the oats and your prized goat. With a little bit of lateral thinking combined with logic.
I will let you work on it a while before I give you the answer.
When trying to find your muse, do not be afraid to use analytical thinking along with your creativity in order to find the best possible answer to your inspiration. While brainstorming and coming up with a ton of creative ideas is a first good step, you then need logic in order to whittle down all of these ideas and arrive at the one that best suits your creative purpose.
Oh yeah, the answer
As you brainstorm about the goat, dog, the oats and your boat, it might have occurred to you that it is possible to take something back with you across the river. So take the goat first, then come back and get the oats, leave the oats but take the goat back. Then take the dog and leave the goat, coming back for it on a fourth trip.