“Will” as an under examined part of the Creative Process.

Just a bit of a thought avalanche…

So, below, a possible starting point for an “equation/formula” for WILL, as it effects creativity at least… to be added to my diagrammatic examination of creativity, created as part of my early research into the links between Creativity, Empathy & Deep Reading

WILL – the toughest and most (only) unteachable element of the creative process.


The Experience of Failure Remembered (anxiety) – EFR

The Projection of Future Failure Imagined/Revisited (anxiety) – PFI

 – all balanced/reckoned against… (and this of course needs to take into consideration any current mental state of the individual and their “in the moment” predisposition to the above balanced against the below)

The Potential for Positive Outcomes/Experiences Imagined (the drive to act) – PPO



————–      =  Will (to attempt to create, despite the Fear of failure)


This equation’s weighting seems to shift in favour of “the drive to act” the further down the road you travel as a creative (occasionally flipping back during times of stress or prolonged failure), with EFR and PFI becoming more diminished with more positive valence experiences following the commitment to the creative act.
“…now able to overcome without fear a situation that formerly would have overwhelmed [them] with anxiety, [they] experience(s) a certain kind of pleasure” Fenichel, 1945/1966, p. 45 via Lumby, J. 2011, Enjoyment and Learning: policy and secondary school learners’ experience in England, British Educational Journal Vol. 37, No. 2, p 249.
All this is tied to the human tendency to prefer rewards (in this case positive feedback on their own work from within or without) that present themselves sooner; this hyperbolic discounting/cognitive dissonance (added to the miasma of Frankl’s often ignored idea of Noogenic Depression that seems ever more prevalent in our students) is often the major factor in students simply giving up – which is why his argument/position has been countered in several ways by creatives recently including Ira Glass, Chris Oatley and Elisabeth Gilbert.

That said, they are often vastly over emphasised in students who are just starting out, particularly in situations were peer criticism and the preservation of any fragile social standing (or agency*) are viewed by the student as of more importance than success.

*again tied to Empathy.

~ by hesir on July 1, 2015.

One Response to ““Will” as an under examined part of the Creative Process.”

  1. […] Intrinsic Will (or self motivation) vs. It’s all “Boring!” […]

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