This 9 part series explores creativity in a practical, approachable way so that it becomes a skill we can practise more simply, more of the time. Our whole lives can be a creative process.
This chapter looks at judgment. It is often said that we are our own biggest critics. It’s very easy to judge yourself and your own creations, as well as accepting the judgment of others. But what alternative is there that doesn’t just involve ignoring feedback? Read on…
Creating from the heart
When we create, we are making something that is unique to us, even if it has been created before by someone else. This is our creation, and therefore reflects certain aspects of our personality, the things we have chosen to express.
As such, it is likely that we will judge our results, as we perceive them to be a measure of our own success; when we are emotionally involved with our work, the outcome can seem to be directed as a judgment of ourselves.
In order to excel in creativity, there are several things that a person can do to help themselves. To suspend judgment is one of the most crucial things to practice in order to achieve greater success and freedom to create.
Feedback vs. judgment
It can be nerve wracking being judged – not ideal grounds for creative freedom
Most people do not enjoy receiving criticism, even if they can see the value of it. It seems preferable to receive positive feedback.
Certainly, both are valuable in evaluating progress and keeping a project in tune with the target audience.
However, adopting a position of non-judgment surpasses this, and it should be noted that it is quite a different process to simply ignoring feedback.
At first, many of the judgments we make can be beneath our notice. We simply don’t realize we are making them, or we accept them unconsciously, and far too readily.
Since judging something is a subjective process, this does not mean that it is true, or that someone else would think the same. We are merely attaching an opinion to something we have done, and believing it to be solid fact.
As we create, we might form attachments to certain parts of our idea, based on how we have judged them and what we know so far.
Forming attachments to what we already know means that we can get stuck in the past; ideas become stale and do not evolve, and we do not expect anything different once our judgment has been made.
It is an inflexible viewpoint, and can result in feeling helpless, being concerned with trivial things, and seriousness. When we are judgmental of our progress or ideas, we become rigid in our views, and shut out many possibilities.
The wisdom of uncertainty
Imagine now a complete absence of judgment.
Each idea can run its course, as we are not holding back by attaching ourselves to an idea that something is ‘bad’. The same goes if we detach from the judgment of something as ‘good’, which we might otherwise decide must be implemented, whatever the cost.
By suspending judgment, we become open to all points of view, and less defensive of our ideas.
This way of thinking leads to uncertainty. Rather than leaving us lost, it is the most fertile ground for creativity, because the unknown contains all possibilities.
The path is unclear, but anything is possible, as we are not forcing our opinions on its direction.
This opens us to fresh, new ideas, and we may be surprised at how much more fun this feels, how free-spirited we become, and how the reach of our creativity becomes close to infinite as we can perceive how all possibilities are open to us.
The ability to experience this is one of the most useful things for anyone wishing to increase their creativity.
<<< Go back to Part 7: Perseverance
Part 9: Suspending Judgment will be published soon.
Written by Becky for No. 57 Boutique