Creative Behaviors Blog Series – Post Seven – Last one!

Supporting Your Creative Student: The Paradoxes of Creativity

In closing our series on creative behaviors, I’d like to share some interesting observations about creativity from author and creativity expert Michael Michalko. He has suggested the following paradoxes of creativity:

To be creative, you must…

  • …have knowledge, but forget the knowledge.
  • …work hard, but spend time doing nothing.
  • …create many ideas, yet most of them are useless.
  • …look at the same thing as everyone else, yet see something different.
  • …desire success, but learn how to fail.
  • …be persistent, but not stubborn.
  • …listen to the experts, but know how to disregard them.

Psychology professor Mihaly Csikszenmihalyi has written extensively about the personalities of creative individuals. “If I had to express in one word what makes their personalities different from others,” he writes, “It’s complexity. They show tendencies of thought and action that in most people are segregated.”


Claudia Bear is a Da Vinci parent, with daughters attending Da Vinci Design and the Innovation Academy. She has a background in both science and the visual arts. In addition to practicing optometry, Claudia is a department manager with Kaiser Permanente, where she manages projects, develops leadership training for managers, and serves on the medical center’s Innovation Design Team.