What Personality Trait is Shared by Creative Geniuses?

In fairness, you’d need to be a bit of a Creative Genius to guess the answer to this question.

Creative Researchers carried out a practical experiment in the US in the 1960’s in which they put a group of highly creative people, including author Truman Capote, in a house for a period of time and observed their behaviour.

The results of the research highlighted one particular trait of creative geniuses and it isn’t your typical ‘high IQ’ result.

“The common traits that people across all creative fields seemed to have in common were an openness to one’s inner life; a preference for complexity and ambiguity; an unusually high tolerance for disorder and disarray; the ability to extract order from chaos; independence; unconventionality; and a willingness to take risks,” write Gregoire and Kaufman, authors of a new book entitled ‘Wired to Create: Unravelling the Mysteries of the Creative Mind’.

Put simply, what differentiates the Creative Geniuses from the rest of us is openness to complexity.  Creative-minded people openly and boldly confront themselves and the world around them, and they appear to find an unusual synthesis between healthy and ‘pathological’ behaviours.

As Jessica Stillman highlights in this Inc.com article on the subject:  Nothing is stopping you from nudging yourself in the direction of greater openness if you’re looking to boost your creativity. Why not try following the simple but powerful advice of WayUp CEO Liz Wessel and just “say yes” more to get started? All you need to do is, whenever someone proposes as activity or idea, simply default to saying yes unless you can think of a damn good reason not to.

Drink anyone?

Conor Foley

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