Open-mindedness fosters creativity

Nobody wants to admit to being close minded; it has a certain stigma to it. Open-mindedness is important for creativity and generating new ideas. Even if you already are open-minded, in life it’s easy to surround yourself with the same ideas and beliefs, and limiting your exposure to other ideas can create a sort of accidental close mindedness.

If you’re liberal, you’re likely to surround yourself mainly with other liberals. If you go to church, you surround yourself with others who hold similar religious beliefs. If you’re American and live in America, you surround yourself with other Americans by default. Although it’s great to be around people who you agree with and who you can communicate with easily, exposing yourself to other ideas is a key part of the open-mindedness that fosters creativity.

Surrounding yourself with people who communicate in a similar manner, see the world a similar way, and hold similar beliefs can essentially create blind spots in your thinking. Failing to see blind spots, though, can cause you to become set in your ways – even when there are better alternatives. Your ways may be great most of the time, but when there is something better out there, you won’t recognize it. Keep your eyes peeled for blind spots and expose yourself to new ideas, and you’ll bolster your creativity and problem solving skills in the long run.

Can Akdeniz

Can Akdeniz is the author of seven books and founder of Business Hacker, a popular business blog. His books such as Go Nuts, Cool Boss, Happy Company and MBA 2.0 have changed how people think about business, productivity and work.