What we say

Growth in creative thinking

Apr 12, 2019

During my first year of college, I had a hard time picturing what my future looked like. Unsure of the unknown and afraid of failure as most college students feel when learning to adult. It was chaos. But I was sure of my passions, one of them being expression through visual story telling. 

I had a hard time believing in myself, though. That I could do something with my passions that could make a difference. I had put my ideas for visual expression on the back burner because I didn’t believe I was good enough at making my ideas a reality.

In design as in life, after the idea or “inspiration” there is almost always a point where you fall hard. It’s an in-between stage of the beginning and the final product. A point where you have to take control and make it yourself. The more you play with the idea the more it seems like a complete waste of time. That’s where my younger self hesitated, unwilling to accept that in order to grow and nurture this idea, there is a confrontation of possible failure.

But let me tell you, there is nothing more unfortunate than a brilliant idea and doing nothing about it, not even trying. I had to learn what tools are needed to execute, or what’s the point? All those creations are left in your head, unused and taking up space.

Before I could identify this point in the creative process, I figured I just sucked at creating. But then I found out that other people experience it too. And that’s where I started to see growth: they stuck with it long enough to see the flowers growing through the cracks.

For me, growing in my creative thinking started with how I viewed my talents internally. I was approaching my work with a predetermined mindset where my talents and thoughts were unchanging. What changed was my willingness to look at the process instead of the outcome and evaluate my “failures” or how I can improve my efforts and abilities. I was beginning to think in a growth mindset. 

As I’m finishing up my college career and entering the adult world, I know that the creative mindset will help me let go of getting stuck in my future endeavors. So I’m learning to embrace getting stuck. Practicing and learning from it, because that’s where growth starts.

Zoe Howard

Assistant Creative Strategist