Leading creativity researcher Dr Ruth Richards says
“Everyday creativity is about everyone, throughout our lives, and fundamental to our very survival. It is how we find our lost child, get enough to eat, make our way in a new place and culture…With our everyday creativity, we adapt flexibly, we improvise, we try different options, whether we are raising a child, counseling a friend, fixing our home, or planning a fundraising event.”
Everyday creativity is about personal creativity and can provide enormous potential for originality, adaptation and improvisation.
Many things we do each day appear common and uneventful. Dr Ruth Richards, psychologist and psychiatrist, reminds us that creativity is as much about how we do it (the process) as it is about what we do (the product). She believes we can live better lives by being consciously creative when we undertake these seemingly uneventful everyday tasks.
Her research has developed a way of measuring creativity, known as the Lifetime Creativity Scales (LCS), which involved developing rating scales based on data about real-life creative accomplishments at work and leisure. She was interested in the originality of everyday life, ranging from the fully unique to the unusual settings they emerged in.
Over many years this research displayed the creative ingenuity of the everyday, from how a single mother made clothes on a tight budget, a father modified a wheelchair for his disabled son, an amateur archaeologist made special finds on his digs, to an auto mechanic who created his own tools. It highlighted the many forms of creativity, often before it was clearly identified or named by the actual participants.
Everyday creativity is not about the trivia of life. It’s about things that might lead to a discovery from where a more important accomplishment can grow. In pursuing a creative life every day, we can explore new possibilities and self-expression as a way of being, and experimentation as a style of existing.