Holding space for ideas

Johnnie Moore

Johnnie Moore

I’m Johnnie Moore, and I help people work better together

The freakonomics blog looks at why we desire but reject creative ideas.

The irony is that as a society we’re constantly talking about how much we value creativity. And yet, the study implies that our minds are biased against it because of the very nature of its novelty. The authors point out that we often view novelty and practicality as inversely related. We generally value practical ideas because they’re familiar and proven, while the more novel an idea, the more uncertainty there exists about whether it’s practical, error-free, or even useful. There is also the social cost that comes with endorsing unproven novel ideas.

I thought there was something in the researchers conclusion;

The field of creativity may need to shift its current focus from identifying how to generate more creative ideas to identify how to help innovative institutions recognize and accept creativity.

I equate that with the idea of holding space, or dialogue practices that aim for greater willingness to sit with discomfort, ambiguity and paradox. It’s a more patient sensibility than the stereotypical over-adrenalised brainstorm.

Hat tip: Rob Paterson

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