John Cleese on Creativity

Advice on creativity from the master of so many things, John Cleese.

Essentially, give yourself time in creatively open mode.  Here are five keys:

1. Space –  away from the trivial urgencies of “normal” life.

2. Time – about 90 minutes is ideal and a clear endpoint will create a useful forcing function to focus your endeavors.

3. Playfulness – don’t short-circuit your creativity by jumping to a decision.  Linger in creative discomfort until  you must decide so that the best ideas have time to rise up through the molasses of your mind. Stay in the what if and why mode as long as possible. Try to determine when you must decide before you start into the creative process so that you can avoid deciding before you have to.

4. Confidence – to be playful with what if’s, illogic, and seemingly wrong ideas knowing that a better solution is more likely the longer you can linger there.

5. Humor – is the fastest way to move from “closed” (rational, decisive, task-focused) mode into “open” (relaxed, playful, creative) mode.

Watch for yourself and for  your creative endeavors: