by Chuck Frey
"I recently came across an article that suggests that to be creative, we must get good at deconstructing challenges and situations into their elements. In so doing, we will reveal the bits and pieces that may be turned to creative advantage. Here’s how the author explains it:
“To get good at creativity, you’re going to have to cultivate the ability to pay attention to details. We talk about ‘close reading’ frequently in literature, art history, and architectural criticism—it’s the process of looking at a single work incredibly carefully. Imagine looking at a few hundred words of a novel and examining it for context, tone, literary references, structure, intent, etc. In a way, for the moment, we treat those few hundred words as more valuable and with more intensity than the entire novel itself. We treat details of problems with the same level of regard and intensity when we’re being creative.”
"It’s sort of like peeling away the layers of an onion. And this kind of deconstruction is exactly the kind of thing that mind mapping – by hand or with software – is incredibly good at. One way to do this is by dividing your creative problem or challenge into its attributes and arranging them in a mind map, similar to the one shown above. Once you’ve done this you can think about each one separately, and think of ways to change or improve it. One advantage of utilizing a mind map for listing attributes is its strength in the area of word association. As you record the attributes of your challenge, you’ll discover that your brain is generating other related keywords. Record those, too."
via Howard Rheingold