Recently I posted on how we connect too much to the virtual world (social media, social networks, emails etc.) and not enough with ourselves. I ventured to say that that was a choice and that we do it really to avoid being alone with our own thoughts. I think we can agree that my point of view on why we connect so much is arguable at the best 😉 but I think the consequences of all this connectivity / activity are more founded on fact rather than opinion.
I think the most serious side affect of all todays connectivity is that it is killing our creativeness and as a direct consequence our capacity to innovate! Say what?
We need boredom to be creative
We need boredom to enable us to process thoughts and generate creativity. This is generally a passive process that is triggered when our minds are not distracted. For example I find jogging great, as the body goes into an automatic state and my mind is freed up, some people find driving has the same effect, others simply like sitting down and looking at the sea. All these are moments when we have no agenda, we are not distracted and that is when the creative process beings.
However, today with all our connectivity there is not one of the above moments where people are not connected / distracted. What about driving? How many people schedule certain phone calls for when they are traveling to and from work (plenty right)? Jogging and going to the gym is the same, people wear the iphone on the arm band. And just simply sitting down and taking in the scenery, well, who doesn’t have a smart phone?
It’s across the board
So if we have no boredom how do we expect to be creative especially when innovation and creativity are more important today than ever before? I think it is also safe to say that all this connectivity and lack of boredom goes across the board and is affecting all parts of society from followers to, unfortunately, our leaders.
What does this all look like?
In a recent post by the excellent Scott Adams on his blog he took a “guess” at what change you could expect to see in a world with declining boredom and therefore declining creativity? I especially liked the following 3.
You might see people acting more dogmatic than usual. If you don’t have time to think for yourself, and think creatively, the easiest opinion to adopt is the default position of your political party, religion, or culture. CHECK.
You might see the economy flat line for lack of industry-changing innovation. CHECK.
You might see more reality shows and fewer scripted shows. CHECK.
Do you feel your connectivity is affecting your creativity? When are you most creative?