A really great (portion of a) lecture from John Cleese on creativity. I’ll admit that I spent the whole time waiting for the punchline, but once you get past that it’s very interesting & insightful.
The main lesson from this talk is that you need 5 things to help creativity:
“You can’t become playful, and therefore creative, if you’re under your usual pressures. You need to stop your usual life and set aside time to do this. In your usual life you are in ‘closed’ mode. You need to stop everything else to allow yourself to be in ‘open’ mode.
“It’s not enough to create space; you have to create your space for a specific period of time.” Cleese recommends 1.5 hour chunks to time. Longer, and you’ll need a break. Shorter & you’ll have only just got going.
3. Time (again)
"Giving your mind as long as possible to come up with something original,” Learn to tolerate the discomfort of pondering time. Don’t just take the first idea that comes in to your head. Spend more time pondering it.
Tolerate indecision. Play with the problem for longer before you try and resolve it.
Before you take a decision, ask yourself the question - when does this decision need to be taken? Then ponder it until you get to that time. Why make the decision before it is necessary?
“Nothing will stop you being creative so effectively as the fear of making a mistake.”
You are playing… You are experimenting… You need to just try things out & see what happens.
“While you’re being creative, nothing is wrong”
“The main evolutionary significance of humour is that it gets us from the closed mode to the open mode quicker than anything else.”
Just because a subject is serious, doesn’t mean that humour can’t be used.