Edward de Bono, one of the world's most creative thought leaders, wrote a book dedicated to beautiful minds in 2004, called exactly that. He describes the attributes of a conversationalist in any setting, that sets beautiful minds apart from boring ones.
Russell Crowe starred in the hit movie, A Beautiful Mind. Set in 1947 it is based on John Nash (Crowe) who arrives at Princeton University. He is co-recipient, with Martin Hansen of the prestigious Carnegie Scholarship for mathematics.
Nash is under pressure to publish, but he wants to publish his own original idea. His inspiration comes when he and his fellow graduate students discuss how to approach a group of women at a bar. Hansen advocates "every man for himself", but Nash argues that a cooperative approach would lead to better chances of success. And, it does.
De Bono may not have had this in mind when he wrote Beautiful Minds, but he certainly talks about interacting with others in a more cooperative way, that extends our minds beyond ego, and connects us with the planet.
He opens the book by having you visualise a beautiful woman, who attracts glances as she glides into a party. People are attracted to her, but one by one, they quickly leave her side, and head to a short, portly, bald man on the other side of the room, where he connects with dozens of partygoers through the night. This, he concludes, is the difference between physical and mental beauty. Beauty of the body and face fades, but you can continue to develop your beautiful mind for your entire life on this planet.
Creativity is the starting point for any beautiful mind. Here are five reasons why:
1. Creativity opens the mind to possibilities.
Instead of viewing the world in black and white, a cloud can become an animal, a tree an enchanting home for elves and goblins and a man with a moon face. Even beyond fiction, Steve Jobs took impossible ideas and made them reality.
2. Creativity only has the limits that you impose.
"It's always been this way" is not the mantra of anyone with a creative mindset. They ask questions and are adept at asking them in multitudes of different ways. Open-ended, to draw out more information. They look for the basis of thinking, alternatives and possibilities. Creative people are often very good listeners. People with beautiful minds always are.
3. Creativity helps build constructive exchanges.
De Bono teaches the Six Hats process, which I mentioned in a prior article. Instead of having egos pitted against one another, the various aspects required to reach a solution (values, information, creative energy, critical thinking, intuition and feelings, why something should work, and organisation) are tackled one at a time. Everyone focusses on the same aspect together, rather than competing.
4. Creativity is the foundation of humanity.
Somewhere along the way, we have lost touch with our roots. Creativity is a life force that is natural and innate within each of us. It's not exclusive for artists or writers. But cultural norms often determine who and who is not, creative, so the child who loved to draw, focusses on a thesis. We lose sense of the child within us, and focus on that which we can control. In essence, we lose complete control, because we are not following our true north, our life purpose. Some of the most creative people on the planet have propelled technology at a rate faster than ever before in history. But I doubt any of them would call themselves 'artists'.
5. Creativity connects us spiritually.
This can mean a lot of things for a lot of people. Even some atheists may well believe in a higher power. Some call it the energy of the universe. Whatever you call it - God, energy, source - there is no doubt amongst creatives that they are the vehicle for higher purpose. This is not a doctrine. It simply means that when you are open to the force that drives the universe (an energy of some description), magic happens.
When you are aligned with your life purpose, all you need to do is to show up and do the work. Having a beautiful mind will flow naturally. You will experience more curiosity, more wonder, greater gratitude for smaller things.
Whether it's writing, business development, relationships, finances or an artistic pursuit, as we open ourselves to creative energy, our mind follows. Beautifully, naturally, and pointed to our true north.
If you would like to learn how to accelerate your own creative journey, check out our 2015 workshops at www.creatavisionpublishing.com, or follow us on Facebook. We will be in Australia first, from February, schedule coming soon.We are all creative. And by developing creative minds, we will truly have an even more beautiful planet.