Pressure is no guarantee for brilliant ideas

Pressure may boost productivity. Creativity, however, comes from a different place.

For example, when looking for ideas for a book cover illustration or an advertising campaign, time pressure or the pressure to succeed can fire us up. It bundles our concentration. We are focused and don’t allow distractions.

It’s not the case, however, that creativity strikes us precisely because we’re under pressure. Ideas are not born out of pressure but with it.

“Creativity is intelligence having fun.”

Albert Einstein

Creative thinking arises from the urge and joy of discovery and creation. It originates from silence, being alone, and spending time with our thoughts. That’s why brainstorming sessions in a group are far less effective than if each participant works quietly on their own at first. We can find compelling examples in the book by Jake Knapp “Sprint – How to solve problems and test new ideas in just five days”.

What we can develop, however, is the ability to access creative, solution-oriented thinking under stressful situations. But this is only possible because we have practiced it before in a pressure-free environment till it becomes an unconscious habit (thinking of Mr. Miyagi: “wax on, wax off”).