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The spirit of creative communication

The experience of creative communication is that in that moment of interaction you feel fresh and alive. There is a sense of free flowing energy between everyone involved. It can feel magical because it’s so rare. In that moment thoughts and perceptions seem to appear out of the blue with a frisson of energy and joy. This is when you are in an intuitive state. For this to happen you need to be in a spacious and open state of mind. This allows you to give yourself to the communication without reservation and most importantly be unreservedly open to the influences of others. In this kind of communication you can freely explore different points of view, sometimes these different perspectives arises within yourself and sometimes they come from others. There is huge unlimited potential for something wonderful to emerge from this kind of communication. An important part of the collaborative process is finding ways of entering into this vibrant creative communication and expanding your creative horizons.

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Communication in groups

Some ideas to help maintain Creativity in group discussions.

By Ian Currie, Creative Engagement

The very nature of creative discussions is to keep exploring new possibilities from different points of view so ideas continue flowing. Taking care of this continual process of idea generation and mutual stimulation in a group is very important.

There are particular approaches, guidelines and skills which help keep ideas evolving in a group.

Some helpful guidelines in group communication

Agree some basic guidelines,

  • Only one person speaking at a time,
  • No side conversations while someone is speaking
  • No barging in while someone is speaking.
  • Keep the thread of continuity of the topic.

Choose a general area or topic which you all want to explore.

  • If it’s not clear what the topic is from the beginning give each person a chance to say or write down a general area of interest to collaborate on.
  • Depending on the time available choose one or more topics to open up.

Agree that everyone has responsibility to regulate the discussion,

  • Take personal responsibility for being involved, avoid being a spectator.
  • Speak up when someone heads off from the agreed general topic.
  • Act quickly to come back to the topic

Skills for keeping communication creative

Keep the topic moving forward; The process of creative collaboration is based on being able to keep a momentum of free flowing communication going. Keep things moving and flowing.

  • If the conversation is going round in circles or has polarised between two opposing points of view bring it to everyone’s attention.
  • Use language which moves things forward rather than stultifying the momentum.
  • When you finish talking make it easy for the next person to pick the topic up.
  • Give space for others to add to what has been said .
  • If you are resistant to the group process find ways of becoming involved.

Have a broad approach to the topic.

  • Include practical, rational, imaginative and ethical perspectives when exploring a topic.
  • Use imagery and metaphor as well as concepts.
  • Keep the language precise and descriptive.
  • Question the idea when it goes against your values.

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skills of creative collaboration by Ian Currie is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.



Creative vagueness

When we attempt to understand the nature of creativity we inevitably come face to face with some pretty nebulous states, it’s a bit like entering a mass of different kinds of cloud with different hues and shapes. Jumping straight into the cloud we come across one of the most mysterious aspects of creativity and the most impervious to rational analysis. Intuition is a central and vital part of being in a creative frame of mind and a good example of nebulous and hard to define. Even when you are in an intuitive state of mind it is hard know it as such at the time.

How are you intuitive?

One way of relating to intuition is that it is the times when you just know something in it’s wholeness without having worked it all out in your head. You just know what the situation is or what someone is going through or what is needed right now. Every aspect of the topic or situation is appreciated as a whole in a tangible and direct way. When intuition is functioning well there are no interpretations or abstract commentary that tells you what is going on in a roundabout way.

Intuition is a kind of wisdom that brings all your faculties together

Intuition is not only about the mind but the body too. It is a great combiner and integrator which brings the bodies memories and sensory understanding together with the mind as an integrated whole. When this happens you can have an intuitive knowing, your body is part of the input which gives you clear indications as to whether something is true or untrue or how things are. The intuition can give you a direct and immediate sense of whether a particular situation will inevitably lead to tragedy or good fortune. From this point of view intuition is a kind of wisdom state which directly reads situations and knows likelihoods and possible outcomes.

Body mind integration

This is a state of mind/body awareness in which everything you know or have experienced about a topic comes together into a fresh and direct knowing, it is alive to the situation and it’s implications. This aspect of intuition being fresh, alive and connected is very important in the creative process. Intuitive perception is not merely a mental computation which happens very quickly but something quite different, it is a more all inclusive and subtle knowing or taking something in. One of the extraordinary things about the intuition is that it draws on many faculties and senses and emerges as something completely different and new.

Exploring the clouds

It is sometimes hard to know how you came into an intuitive knowing, but certain conditions are needed for it all to come together. To be in an intuitive state of mind five particular qualities or frames of mind all need to be present simultaneously. Each of these is also as amorphous as clouds. They are a sense of openness, poised relaxation, a sense of integral expansiveness, pliancy or flexibility of mind and a sense of nuance or subtlety. Each of these qualities can be exercised and developed in their own right. When they are all there together being in an intuitive state is more likely to arise.

Become expansive

Although each of these five qualities are essential, the mysterious nature of an expansive frame of mind is perhaps the most important. A sense of expansiveness allows for a sense of wholeness or gestalt where different aspects of the mind can spark off each other and augment each other without being at odds. This synthesis and mutual relationship between such varied functions as conceptual thought, imagination and practical experience are only possible in a state of general expansiveness. When you are closed down or narrow in your perception it feels just like that. Being able to recognise and tell the difference between a sense of expansiveness and being contracted and being able to make a shift to expansiveness is essential to both intuition and creativity.