“Creativity is just connecting things. When you ask creative people how they did something, they feel a little guilty because they didn’t really do it, they just saw something. It seemed obvious to them after a while. That’s because they were able to connect experiences they’ve had and synthesize new things.” ~ Steve Jobs
Yesterday, I visited the beautiful, interactive Young at Art Museum in Davie, Florida with my grandson, Noah, and his mom and dad. Noah is now officially a toddler, so he enjoyed walking by himself to discover new things. Anytime he would see something new that he wanted to explore, he would turn around and say, “Bye”, and toddle away. Anytime he saw something really interesting, he would say, “Wow.” He loved the water pool (shown above), but he could not understand why he couldn’t just take off his clothes and get in to play. Noah was having new experiences, connecting those experiences to things he already knew, and synthesizing new ideas.
As I watched Noah, I realized that anyone could use the same process for creating new ideas:
*have a new experience,
*connect that new experience with knowledge, then
*synthesize a new idea.
Just as Steve Jobs mentioned in his quote above, the first step to generating a new idea is to have a new experience. Doing the same things all the time won’t provide any new information to connect with existing knowledge. Have you had any experiences in 2014 that you can use to synthesize new ideas in 2015?
For me, my time in Cambodia provided a wealth of new experiences that I am still processing through my mind. One of my new ideas for 2015 is to create a clean energy, STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) project for the children who attend the Cambodian Care’s Light of Future School for Earth Day 2015.
My idea includes having children who participate in our Children of Inmates program participate in the same project at the same time. Then, I would like the children to interact using SKYPE to share their Earth Day 2015 project and experiences. Not only is it a good idea, I think it’s a Big Idea!
Are you ready to synthesize some new ideas for 2015?
(Photo credits: Linda Freeman, Davie, Florida and Koy Chiim, Phnom Penh, Cambodia, December 2014.)