Affiliate Disclosure: By buying the products we recommend, you help keep the lights on at MakeUseOf. Read more.
Creativity. Inspiration. Passion. These are all concepts of which we are very much aware, but not many of us can precisely pinpoint their source. Where does creativity come from? What is it that causes a moment of inspiration? How can you cultivate passion?
Thanks to a number of TED Talks related to these subjects, ordinary laymen like me and you can better understand these concepts. It’s only by studying these concepts that we can become better equipped to nurture and develop these aspects of our humanity.
On Music and Passion
This TED Talk is often lauded as one of the best TED Talks available. Perhaps it’s due to the genuine passion and love exerted by the speaker, musician Benjamin Zander. Or maybe it’s because the subject matter hits so close to our own hearts and resonates so deeply.
Zander uses classical music as a way to illustrate a more universal concept – how passion and inspiration can light up the eyes and hearts of those whom you would never expect to see lit up. Passion and creativity are powerful weapons, if only we would wield them in a manner worth wielding.
Definitely a must-see clip. If you could only watch one TED Talk, I would highly recommend that it be this one.
Do Schools Kill Creativity?
A mind-blowing speech by Sir Ken Robinson on the damage that public education has dealt to the creativity of children. Many of us may think that creativity is something that is initially absent and which must be nurtured and cared for in order for it to grow and flourish. However, Robinson believes that creativity is not something we grow into, but something that education forces us out of.
This talk is a revolutionary way to look at the effects that public education has had on human creativity. For creativity and originality to exist, we must not be afraid to take risks and fail. However, public education and corporate business has stigmatized making mistakes. No wonder creativity has gone out the window.
On top of being an eye opener, Robinson is British. His clever wit and intelligent jokes only make the talk that much better.
Where New Ideas Come From
If someone were to ask you where your new ideas came from, what would you say? For many of us, we’d probably say that our best ideas came to us in a moment of fleeting inspiration – dozing off during class, or doodling around during your commute, or while sipping on a cappuccino at the local café. There always seems to be a “Eureka!” moment attached to a new idea.
In this TED Talk, Steven Johnson argues that new ideas don’t suddenly strike us out of nowhere like lightning. Rather, new ideas are slowly built up over time and incubated through years of networking. Those famous “Eureka!” moments are simply the culmination of all that incubation.
This is a fascinating take on the formulation of new ideas. A must-watch for creative artists.
A New Way to Think About Creativity
In this talk, writer Elizabeth Gilbert explores an idea that comes inherent with creativity – fear. There seems to be an air of fear that always pervades creative circles. Fear of failure. Fear of not living up to expectations. Fear of being a fake hack. How do creative individuals deal with this constant inner fear?
Gilbert proposes a new way to view creativity. Instead of thinking of it as something that springs from within ourselves, she wonders how we differently we would view creative endeavors if we believed that creative inspiration came from an external source.
It’s mostly about the shift of responsibility in order to maintain sanity, but perhaps her message has a few merits.
Do you have a favorite TED Talk, relating to creativity, passion and inspiration? If so, give us the link in the comments and tell us why you like it so much.