“It's not about standing still and becoming safe. If anybody wants to keep creating they have to be about change.” -Miles Davis
It's an often told cliché that only the young are creative. Often the new generations are opening the minds of the older generations, whether that is because of their minds or technology, the cliché has been often proven true. But does it necessarily have to be true, can you remain creative and innovative as you get older?
The answer is a resounding and possibly obvious "yes"! How to remain creative is a little bit harder as it takes a great deal of self-awareness and an understanding. Creativity is a very touchy-feely term that is often incredibly difficult to define - however, to lose creativity is often to stop challenging the status quo. It's a sense of comfort or assimilation that leads to saying, "this is just the way things are done and it is how I will do it".
Take for example an artist who develops a style - that style in and of itself may not be uncreative but when that artist no longer creates outside of that style that artist is restricting their creativity. The same goes for entrepreneurs, to simply work using the same constraints is to lose a sense of creativity. You must look at your product or service and try to completely rethink it every once and a while. Sometimes that labor will be fruitless, but if it simply gets you to think of your product differently it will have been a success.
Part of the reason we see serial entrepreneurs is that they feel they have hit a wall with a certain project and they are ready for something new. Jonah Lehrer, author of Imagine: How Creativity Works, said in an interview “If you have to pick one secret to staying creative throughout your entire life,” he says, “it’s to seek out new problems, and when you feel comfortable and like you know how to do something, do something else.”
So tomorrow before you start working on a project, see if you can find a new problem and fix it.