Are you divergent or are you a divergent thinker?

The standard definition of divergent is differing or deviating. Implicitly, at least for me, this has a somewhat negative connotation.

To be a divergent thinker, however, is a characteristic to which one should strive. Developed originally in the 1950s by psychologist Joy Paul (J.P.). Guilford, divergent thinking is a important part of creativity. Guilford associated it with four main characteristics:

+ fluency: the ability to produce a large number of solutions to a problem very quickly
+ flexibility: the capacity to consider a number of different approaches to a problem simultaneously
+ originality: the tendency to produce ideas and solutions different from most other people
+ elaboration: the ability to think through the details of an idea and execute it effectively

A practical 2011 interpretation of this idea from 1950: be quick on your  feet, think broad and yet deep, think out of the box, be thorough, do it well.

Know when to be prime. Know when to be composite.

Stand out by striving towards divergent thinking at every occasion.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s