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How to Develop Sherlock Holmes-Like Powers of Observation and Deduction

The two core values of Holmes' skills are simple: observation and deduction...
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Cultivating Creativity
building practical skills for increased creativity
Curated by Peter Shanks
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What is Genius - Creativity, Intelligence, and Enlightenment | Mysterious Universe

What is Genius - Creativity, Intelligence, and Enlightenment | Mysterious Universe | Cultivating Creativity | Scoop.it
Twice in the past 18 months, Scientific American has published special issues dealing with genius and creativity. Both concepts are difficult to define.
Peter Shanks's insight:

I agree with Stephen Jay Gould: “I am somehow less interested,” he told New Scientist, “in the weight and convolutions of Einstein’s brain than in the near certainty that people of equal talent have lived and died in cotton fields and sweatshops.” Since we don’t know where genius comes from, we should probably assume that it can come from anywhere—and do what we can to make sure everybody can make the most of their potential.

 
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Can Asking Better Questions Make Us Better Innovators?

Can Asking Better Questions Make Us Better Innovators? | Cultivating Creativity | Scoop.it
If we want to be more innovative, learning how to ask better questions is a key skill to develop.
Peter Shanks's insight:

as the world becomes more complex, the value of answers goes down, while the value of questions goes up.  Why? Because an answer is usually very context specific, but a good question will still be valid across changing contexts.

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» How to Experience “Flow” - Thrive

» How to Experience “Flow” - Thrive | Cultivating Creativity | Scoop.it
Have you ever been fully engaged doing something that challenged your abilities, in a state of total ecstasy where nothing else mattered except you and the task
Peter Shanks's insight:

Flow happens when individuals devote their entire energy and concentration to a challenge that stimulates growth and development.

As Csikszentmihalyi has stated, “The best moments usually occur when a person’s body or mind is stretched to its limits in a voluntary effort to accomplish something difficult and worthwhile.”

Flow improves the quality of our experiences and makes for excellence, happiness, and satisfaction in life.

So how can we create more flow-producing experiences that contribute to our personal development? Here’s how.

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Trying Not to Try: How to Cultivate the Paradoxical Art of Spontaneity Through the Chinese Concept of Wu-Wei

Trying Not to Try: How to Cultivate the Paradoxical Art of Spontaneity Through the Chinese Concept of Wu-Wei | Cultivating Creativity | Scoop.it
"Our modern conception of human excellence is too often impoverished, cold, and bloodless. Success does not always come from thinking more r
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We have been taught to believe that the best way to achieve our goals is to reason about them carefully and strive consciously to reach them. Unfortunately, in many areas of life this is terrible advice. Many desirable states — happiness, attractiveness, spontaneity — are best pursued indirectly, and conscious thought and effortful striving can actually interfere with their attainment.

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How to Retain Mental and Creative Focus

How to Retain Mental and Creative Focus | Cultivating Creativity | Scoop.it
By simply asking the right questions at the right cadence, you plant seeds of thought to create thought patterns that drive your business forward.
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Bolt, the fastest pigeon in the world was sold for £300,000 last year to a Chinese millionaire. Belgian pigeon fancier Leo Heremans also sold the rest of his aviary collection at auction for over $5 million. Did that seem random to you? It was my intentional strategy to activate your RAS.

I recommend starting meetings with information that people are not expecting, as it gets them to pay attention. This technique brings them fully into the room and makes them present.

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6 Science-Backed Methods To Improve Your Memory

6 Science-Backed Methods To Improve Your Memory | Cultivating Creativity | Scoop.it
You've heard the memory-boosting advice and tried all the tricks. Check out these surprising ways your memory can be better, backed up with science.
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Vitamin E may delay decline in mild-to-moderate Alzheimer’s Disease, study finds | KurzweilAI

Vitamin E may delay decline in mild-to-moderate Alzheimer’s Disease, study finds | KurzweilAI | Cultivating Creativity | Scoop.it
(Credit: iStock) New research published online first in the Jan. 1 Journal of the American Medical Association suggests that alpha tocepherol (fat-soluble
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Electric 'thinking cap' controls learning speed

Electric 'thinking cap' controls learning speed | Cultivating Creativity | Scoop.it
Caffeine-fueled cram sessions are routine occurrences on any college campus. But what if there was a better, safer way to learn new or difficult material more quickly? What if "thinking caps" were real? Scientists have now shown that it is possible to selectively manipulate our ability to learn through the application of a mild electrical current to the brain, and that this effect can be enhanced or depressed depending on the direction of the current.
Peter Shanks's insight:

In a new study published in the Journal of Neuroscience, Vanderbilt psychologists Robert Reinhart, a Ph.D. candidate, and Geoffrey Woodman, assistant professor of psychology, show that it is possible to selectively manipulate our ability to learn through the application of a mild electrical current to the brain, and that this effect can be enhanced or depressed depending on the direction of the current.

 
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Strongest evidence yet of two distinct human cognitive systems

Strongest evidence yet of two distinct human cognitive systems | Cultivating Creativity | Scoop.it
Cognitive scientists may have produced the strongest evidence yet that humans have separate and distinct cognitive systems with which they can categorize, classify, and conceptualize their worlds. The systems also may have different courses of decline in cognitive aging, which would have ramifications for remediation and compensation in dementia.
Peter Shanks's insight:

"Our finding that there are distinct, discrete systems has implications for the fields of child development and cognitive aging," says lead researcher, cognitive psychologist J. David Smith, PhD, of the University at Buffalo.

"These distinct systems may have different developmental courses as the cortex matures," he says, "meaning that children may categorize differently than adults, using different systems at different ages. This would have educational and training implications in cases of developmental disability."

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Creative Strategies for Thinking Obliquely | The Curious Creative

Creative Strategies for Thinking Obliquely | The Curious Creative | Cultivating Creativity | Scoop.it
In "The Rules of Genius, Rule #9: Approach answers obliquely", Marty Neumeier outlines a range of thinking strategies (italicised below) to explore a
Peter Shanks's insight:

thoughts and links to help you approach your own creative exploration in a holistic way and to think obliquely

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Can you learn to be creative?

Can you learn to be creative? | Cultivating Creativity | Scoop.it
Is creativity magical? Not according to those now teaching it as a skill, discovers Colin Barras. Are there really secrets to unlocking your imagination?
Peter Shanks's insight:

Puccio teaches his students that creativity comes in four stages – clarifying, ideating, developing and implementing. Clarifying is ensuring you’re asking the right question; ideating is about exploring as many solutions as possible; developing and implementing are making sure the idea is practical and convincing to others.

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The Latest DIY Craze: Brain Hacking - IEEE Spectrum

The Latest DIY Craze: Brain Hacking - IEEE Spectrum | Cultivating Creativity | Scoop.it
Home experimenters are building rigs to send currents through their heads
Peter Shanks's insight:

tDCS doesn’t require expensive equipment; all it takes is a 9-volt battery, some simple circuits, and a couple of electrodes. Consequently, it didn’t take long for so-called biohackers to band together and come up with schematics for devices.

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A 5-Step Technique for Producing Ideas circa 1939

A 5-Step Technique for Producing Ideas circa 1939 | Cultivating Creativity | Scoop.it
"The habit of mind which leads to a search for relationships between facts becomes of the highest importance in the production of ideas."
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What It Takes To Be A Genius - Edudemic

What It Takes To Be A Genius - Edudemic | Cultivating Creativity | Scoop.it
Sometimes, we need a little reminder of what makes awesome happen. Sometimes genius just happens, sometimes genius comes from a ton of hard work, but more often than not, “genius” comes from a combination of a number of different factors. So as you, or your students, sometimes struggle through a task or a day, take …
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Human consciousness is simply a state of matter, like a solid or liquid – but quantum

Thanks to the work of a small group neuroscientists and theoretical physicists over the last few years, we may finally have found a way of analyzing the mysterious, metaphysical realm of consciousness in a scientific manner. The latest breakthrough in this new field, published by Max Tegmark of MIT, postulates that consciousness is actually a state of matter, allowing us to scientifically tackle murky topics such as self awareness, and why we perceive the world in classical three-dimensional terms, rather than the infinite number of objective realities offered up by the many-worlds interpretation of quantum mechanics.
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How Does IQ Relate to Personality? | Beautiful Minds, Scientific American Blog Network

How Does IQ Relate to Personality? | Beautiful Minds, Scientific American Blog Network | Cultivating Creativity | Scoop.it
Personality and IQ have traditionally been viewed as distinct domains of human functioning. However, research over the past three decades suggests that IQ is a personality ...
Peter Shanks's insight:

Consistent with prior research, IQ was most strongly related to openness to experience. Out of 9 dimensions of openness to experience, 8 out of 9 were positively related to IQ: intellectual engagement, intellectual creativity, mental quickness, intellectual competence, introspection, ingenuity, intellectual depth, and imagination. Interestingly, IQ was much more strongly related to intellectual engagement and mental quickness than imagination, ingenuity, or intellectual depth, and IQ was not related to sensitivity to beauty.

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Help Your Employees Find Flow

Help Your Employees Find Flow | Cultivating Creativity | Scoop.it
Reduce interruptions by easing up on meetings and email.
Peter Shanks's insight:

Groschupf’s techniques for combating interruptions and fostering flow are straightforward: allowing people to switch off email, fewer meetings, and focusing on smaller chunks of work. These strategies, however, wouldn’t be as effective if just one person made these changes to his or her individual work. The key is that the whole organization is on board.

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How to Pick the Best Productivity Method for Your Personality | Todoist Blog

How to Pick the Best Productivity Method for Your Personality | Todoist Blog | Cultivating Creativity | Scoop.it
There are many productivity techniques– it's hard to choose which is ideal for you. We share the Pomodoro, Seinfeld, & GTD methods to help you decide the best.
Peter Shanks's insight:

we’ve rounded up three of the most popular strategies: Getting Things Done (GTD), Pomodoro, and Seinfeld, analyzed them, and provided tips regarding each method and what kinds of characteristics you might require to benefit from one over the other.

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Mindapps and The Neurosingularity Project

Mindapps and The Neurosingularity Project | Cultivating Creativity | Scoop.it
When Bigger Heads and Better Brains Surpass Our Current Ones
Peter Shanks's insight:

Inventing new mindapps, chemicals⎯breathing skills, exercise routines, and so forth⎯is an open frontier. An even more innovative step is to combine psychotechnologies into new recipes, to orchestrate them into innovative series, to invent new mindapps and their synthetic states

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This 5-Step Mental Workout Will Make You Smarter

This 5-Step Mental Workout Will Make You Smarter | Cultivating Creativity | Scoop.it
Dan Hurley, author of Smarter: The New Science of Building Brain Power, advises that you put some brain sneakers on and get mentally moving.
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Lessons from Disney Pixar on how creativity leads to more summative success - Ewan McIntosh | Digital Media & Learning

Lessons from Disney Pixar on how creativity leads to more summative success - Ewan McIntosh | Digital Media & Learning | Cultivating Creativity | Scoop.it
Pixar, since it was purchased by Disney, gives off an air of resilient creative and commercial success, but the journey is rarely that smooth. In fact, the more creative the output, the more commercially successful it is, for Pixar at least, and the processes used by the teams is remarkably close to what we see in highly effective classrooms. During...
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Agile is not a Process – it Defines a Culture - Only Dead Fish

Agile is not a Process – it Defines a Culture - Only Dead Fish | Cultivating Creativity | Scoop.it
I’ve been reading Michael Sahota’s Agile Adoption and Transformation Survival Guide (from which the title of this post is taken) and finding myself nodding in violent agreement with much of its sentiment. The word ‘agile’ seems to be being applied...
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How To Think

How To Think | Cultivating Creativity | Scoop.it
"It’s uncomfortable to focus so intensely on what you’re bad at."
Peter Shanks's insight:

Two of the most important executive functions are cognitive flexibility and cognitive self-control. Cognitive flexibility is the ability to see alternative solutions to problems, to think outside the box, to negotiate unfamiliar situations. Cognitive self-control is the ability to inhibit an instinctive or habitual response and substitute a more effective, less obvious one

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18 Things Highly Creative People Do Differently

18 Things Highly Creative People Do Differently | Cultivating Creativity | Scoop.it
'Inspiration and ideas often arise seemingly out of nowhere and then fail to show up when we most need them, and creative thinking requires complex cognition yet is completely distinct from the thinking process.'
Peter Shanks's insight:

While there's no "typical" creative type, there are some tell-tale characteristics and behaviors of highly creative people. Here are 18 things they do differently.

 

 

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Eight Habits that Improve Cognitive Function

Eight Habits that Improve Cognitive Function | Cultivating Creativity | Scoop.it
What daily habits improve brain structure and cognitive function?
Peter Shanks's insight:
Physical ActivityOpenness to ExperienceCuriosity and CreativitySocial ConnectionsMindfulness MeditationBrain-Training GamesGet Enough SleepReduce Chronic Stress
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