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Einstein and Creativity

Cracking Creativity: The Secrets of Creative GeniusI am reading this fabulous book called Cracking Creativity. It talks, among other things, about Albert Einstein’s creative process. I saw this quote today and it got me thinking:

“It’s not that I’m so smart, it’s just that I stay with problems longer.”

-Albert Einstein

That is the whole beauty of linear and creative thinking. Most people look for the first answer they can find – which may be that there is no answer. Creative geniuses keep coming up with answers and new ways to think about the problem until they have a breakthrough.

I don’t remember if it was Cracking Creativity or somewhere else that I read that Einstein and other creative geniuses got their major breakthroughs in a flash, but only after investing a large amount of effort into finding new ways to think about the problem. Most people think they labored on slowing finding a solution, but in fact the solution was not built piece by piece, but came all at once.

1 Comment

  1. Jake Munson

    This is very true. Something I’ve learned over the years in learning how to solve programming problems is that often times I’m going down the wrong path. Sometimes I’ll spend too much time trying to ‘force’ something to work, when I need to back up and take a different approach. When ever I do the latter, I can almost always find a solution.

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