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Author Topic: Why Creative People Are Eccentric  (Read 8853 times)

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Offline Saerrael

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Re: Why Creative People Are Eccentric
« Reply #25 on: April 17, 2011, 07:39:57 PM »
Anyone here ever play the game of 'How did we get on this subject?'  After a typical conversation, you trace back the logical leaps that took you from point A to point Omicron (yes, so far removed from the original subject that you have to change alphabets).

*raises a hand* I call it Random Association Syndrome ::)
Than again, I have it with everything >.>'

Offline Seaweed

Re: Why Creative People Are Eccentric
« Reply #26 on: April 18, 2011, 01:57:20 AM »
This is very much like me. I have been diagnosed with Aspergers as well. But I lack many of the filters people do, I can't keep irrelevant ideas out of my head. And thus I am plagued with this need, not just a desire, but a need to write. And I write on everything. I lack sometimes center and focus though.

Thank you giving us this article. It was a nice read.

Offline Noelle

Re: Why Creative People Are Eccentric
« Reply #27 on: April 18, 2011, 06:15:50 PM »
It's a shame the article is under a paid cut, I'd like to actually read the full thing and decide for myself.

I have been doing art my whole life and don't find the whole "overstimulation" thing to be true at all for me in most of my interactions. If anything, I'm a serial multi-tasker and I can rarely do anything without something else happening in the background. I tune things out easily when I am making art, but I like to have music there even if I'm not consciously listening to it. I knit while I watch movies, hell, I even put things in my grocery cart while making sound effects. The only place I require no other noise or stimulation is when I sleep -- even light snoring keeps me awake and I wake up at the drop of a hat.

The only times I've felt overstimulated is when I'm in an intense place or situation, but I don't think it's anything unusual that a "normal" person wouldn't feel in the same circumstances. Malls make me feel overstimulated after about an hour or so, at which time I shut down and kind of stop "seeing" things because there's just shit everywhere to look at and so many people at once and noise and the like, but I don't see that as a product of my creativity in the least :P

Offline Jude

Re: Why Creative People Are Eccentric
« Reply #28 on: April 18, 2011, 06:18:14 PM »
Agreed on the paid cut thing.  It's sad that the evidence behind what so many people are simply taking for granted isn't actually displayed on this thread at all.  There's just so much speculation about what is said and commentary supposedly confirming it, which has broadened out into all sorts of ambiguous talk that has nothing to do with the article -- even the title itself is slightly misleading when compared to the abstract of the underlying study given.  There's zero discussion about the plausibility and actual logic behind these findings, so running with them and being openly introspective in this way is like treating science as if it's a horoscope.

The snippets that are actually given about this article for free are completely worthless in determining the validity of its claims.  There may be something to this, but it probably has more to do with functional fixedness, genetics, and psychology than anything mentioned here.
« Last Edit: April 18, 2011, 06:43:39 PM by Jude »

Offline Trieste

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Re: Why Creative People Are Eccentric
« Reply #29 on: April 19, 2011, 04:53:38 PM »
What's really shitty of Scientific American is that even if you have a subscription, you have to buy this particular article. I'm not certain if it's because the article is a part of the upcoming issue, or if they just have content that they will only sell as individual content. One thing is certain, though: at $6 per article, I know that my institution is probably paying more than enough money that students should be able to read this.

Disgusting.

Offline Star SafyreTopic starter

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Re: Why Creative People Are Eccentric
« Reply #30 on: April 19, 2011, 05:39:10 PM »
*snorts in disgust*

Bad form.  What's the point of offering an article for free for a short while and then making it pay?  Guh, decidedly lame.

Offline Shadax

Re: Why Creative People Are Eccentric
« Reply #31 on: May 10, 2011, 06:47:12 PM »
Also, sound off if you still have fantasies that resemble so much the imagination games you had as a kid, imagining you're an awesome mage, a skilled sword wielder, secret agent, zombie survivor, sound off please so I don't feel so friggin' weird. Haha.

Oh yeah... good entertainment, that.

The over/under stimulation thingis a big for me. If I cant get enough stimulation from my environment, then I have to make my own, either by playing a game, writing or delving into the depths of my brain for some epic fantasy. Too much though, like a big party, then I ether drift into a daze or if it doesn't interest me then I completely disconnect from it all and go off into my head again. The fun part though where my environment isn't providing enough but I cant afford to go into my own head or do something else to compensate, like playing multilayer board games where it takes too long to get back to my turn. Then, rather then being directed inwards as my usually white wall of thought all the mental energy gets turned outwards and I go completely bonkers hyperactive. The running joke is that I can somehow get drunk on air.

The background noise is a big for me too - I hate silence. Unless, for some odd reason, I am doing housework then the quiet helps me to concentrate for an hour or two.

Anyone here ever play the game of 'How did we get on this subject?'  After a typical conversation, you trace back the logical leaps that took you from point A to point Omicron (yes, so far removed from the original subject that you have to change alphabets).


Lol, that is a common breathing point for many a wandering convocation. Yes.

Offline WhiteTigerForever

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Re: Why Creative People Are Eccentric
« Reply #32 on: June 24, 2011, 11:56:10 AM »
The Unleashed Mind: Why Creative People Are Eccentric

This article is fascinating in many, many ways, but I immediately was drawn to this observation:

As a creative person from a very young age, I was always very sensitive to both distraction and lack of stimuli.  In noisy, crowded or overstimulating conditions, I find it impossible to think, hold a conversation, or think creatively.  Sometimes even the presence of another person quietly being in the same room is too much. 

Conversely, silence drives me insane.  When I try to sleep at night in a completely silent and dark room, I will stay up until ungodly hours filling the night with random thoughts, imagining, and, for lack of a better word, night-dreaming.  The absence of input makes my brain fill with all sorts of thoughts which make it impossible to fall sleep.  Night lights, running televisions, white noise machines all are quite necessary for me to get any rest.

Wow!,... the similarities in personality are fascinating as you also just described me.. but in a crowded room or outside, I talk and talk out of a tension and nervous energy... desperately fleeing to my isolation for respite.  Where I can be comfortable, without the over stimulation.

... and like you, the total lack of noise drives me crazy as every sound keeps me up, so I keep strong fans for white noise going all the time! 

Thanks for the topic and quote!  ;D

Offline DudelRok

Re: Why Creative People Are Eccentric
« Reply #33 on: June 24, 2011, 05:15:44 PM »
Think the only difference between myself and others here is how I respond to such over stimuli (or lack there of). I become agitated, down right angry with all the noise around me. In fact I've even got to the point where I call unwanted verbal exchange as nothing more than noise.

It is frustrating with so many people around. You can hear them all, make out every single freaking conversation and when others demand you pay attention it's a wonder how the hell they even can with all all that freaking static. I get so, so, mad that people are talking talking talking, about mindless dribble. I've learned to zone a lot of it out, mostly because I had very bad anger issues when I was much younger, and focus on things elsewhere when possible.

I have, however, grown used to silence, especially since it's not noise, in that I realized it's never truly silent. Most so, though, with me is total darkness. A complete lack of visual stimuli (yes, even while sleeping) bothers me horribly. So I leave electronics on just for their illuminated "On" lights (their electric hum helps too). Heaven forbid the power go out or I'll start pacing the house as my brain just goes and goes and goes.


For all of the above reason, I was given video games as a kid and continue to use them as a proper bright and flashy distraction. Handheld gaming is the work of The Gods, I tell you. Batteries is all you need and they are always there when you need distracting. :D

Offline VincentD

Re: Why Creative People Are Eccentric
« Reply #34 on: July 06, 2011, 02:44:17 AM »
      I find that pure silence is a luxury for myself as I live a couple hundred feet from a major freeway, so quiet time is a very rare thing as you can imagine. Whenever I went on Boy Scout trips <stop laughing.> I used to stay up most of the night just enjoying the lack of sounds in the city. At home I can turn everything off and still here the electric wires humming, the cable box, the upstairs neighbor's fridge. Gah.

      I find that writing focuses my thought floods almost perfectly, barring the fact that sometimes the thoughts come too fast for me to get straight and place on the screen or on paper. That very reason is why I have lost creative ideas, as if my brain stamps a expiration date on certain thoughts and if I wait too long...Poof! Never to be seen again.

   On the "how did we get to this topic" point, I find in myself that because I like people to know excatly what I mean and intend when I speak to them that I give far too much background information. Usually, while I'm explaining the background info that will spark another branch in thought, so then we're off to the races on that thought and etc, etc, ad nauseam. I do it to my friends ALL THE TIME.

     

Offline selfexiled

Re: Why Creative People Are Eccentric
« Reply #35 on: September 06, 2011, 10:06:30 AM »
Damn it just wiped my post.

I think im lookin in the mirror when I read all these posts.
My brain never stops I need silence every so often so I can make the brain shutup a minute.

"Also, sound off if you still have fantasies that resemble so much the imagination games you had as a kid, imagining you're an awesome mage, a skilled sword wielder, secret agent, zombie survivor, sound off please so I don't feel so friggin' weird. Haha." from Braioch

Wait a second...you mean, other people DON'T do that?  :D Starry night, I can't go thirty minutes without pretending I'm someone else. Of course,  whether that's a symptom of my creative eccentricity, latent schizophrenia, or just a desperate need for escapism is a roll of  the dice, lol.

So so so so so me!!!!!!!

Offline Roxy Rocket

Re: Why Creative People Are Eccentric
« Reply #36 on: September 21, 2011, 01:25:49 PM »
(removed for now)
« Last Edit: July 28, 2012, 12:28:15 AM by Roxy Rocket »

Offline Oniya

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Re: Why Creative People Are Eccentric
« Reply #37 on: September 21, 2011, 02:38:13 PM »
One can be eccentric without constantly displaying those eccentricities.  There isn't anyone (who knows much about him) who would deny that Richard Feynman was eccentric, yet there are plenty of pictures of him in business suits.  Some would suggest that Murray Gell-Mann's interest in amateur archaeology and bird watching is 'eccentric', simply because they can't see the appeal of wading through undergrowth in Bhutan with a pair of binoculars, or digging a hole with a toothbrush and not getting paid for it.  Carl Sagan was an advocate of marijuana use, and his widow has gone on to do work with NORML, and yet most people can't quite reconcile that with the suited host of Cosmos.

Offline Roxy Rocket

Re: Why Creative People Are Eccentric
« Reply #38 on: September 21, 2011, 03:30:06 PM »
(removed for now)
« Last Edit: July 28, 2012, 12:28:42 AM by Roxy Rocket »

Offline Oniya

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Re: Why Creative People Are Eccentric
« Reply #39 on: September 21, 2011, 04:47:21 PM »
I never said it would 'blow their worldview'.  It's more of a 'whoa, really?' moment.  Eccentricity isn't something that can be measured precisely (unless you're talking about planetary orbits), and can range from the mild (a hockey goalie who knits his own toques might be seen as a little odd) to the full-blown, 'crazy cat lady'. 

I'm not claiming it's a two-way correlation (the crazy cat lady is not necessarily a genius), or that you can't be creative without being quirky - although someone who is able to think outside the box is more likely to come up with an innovative solution to a problem; or even that creativity equates to genius. 

Offline Reena

Re: Why Creative People Are Eccentric
« Reply #40 on: November 10, 2011, 12:54:50 AM »
I consider myself to be fairly creative, yet I think I'd be the exact opposite of what everyone is describing. I find myself focusing too much on certain things more often than too little. Once I find an interesting idea, I just stick to it and think about all the different ways I can go with it. I also can sometimes focus too much on music, and it takes a person shouting at me or tapping me on the shoulder to get my attention just because I get so immersed in it.

Unfortunately, this also causes a lot of information to get filtered out. This is why I'm horrible with people's names - my brain just doesn't seem to think that a person's name is a very important piece of information. I still forget the names of people I've known for years. There is such a thing as too much of a filter as well as too little.

Creativity is just one of those traits I don't think can quite be pinned down. I've seen creativity in all kinds of different people with all kinds of different personalities and backgrounds. And rarely is the creativity channeled into the same niche. When people think of creativity, they think of artistic people, but really creativity can be expressed in just about any form, from creating a sports play to solving scientific problems to deciding the best way a doctor can treat a patient who is unable to be clearly diagnosed. I doubt creativity is linked to a person's ability to focus.

Offline WhiteTigerForever

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Re: Why Creative People Are Eccentric
« Reply #41 on: November 10, 2011, 02:57:40 PM »
One can be eccentric without constantly displaying those eccentricities.  There isn't anyone (who knows much about him) who would deny that Richard Feynman was eccentric, yet there are plenty of pictures of him in business suits.  Some would suggest that Murray Gell-Mann's interest in amateur archaeology and bird watching is 'eccentric', simply because they can't see the appeal of wading through undergrowth in Bhutan with a pair of binoculars, or digging a hole with a toothbrush and not getting paid for it.  Carl Sagan was an advocate of marijuana use, and his widow has gone on to do work with NORML, and yet most people can't quite reconcile that with the suited host of Cosmos.

Though I personally don't like or use Mary Jane, I am for the legalization of it.. seriously.. have you ever seen a group of stoned guys go up to a bank and rob it?  By the time they would have even gotten to the teller, they would have forgotten why they were there and robbed her of all her/his lollipops!  XD   I, as I always have been, and am a great lover of the beloved Carl Sagan.

(esp. when I learned the word googooplex!  ha ha ha ha ha)


There have been many studies, from hunter gatherer societies, including those in the mental health profession, going back to the 60's researching into the use of mind altering substances, ex: peyote, used appropriately for religious or ceremonial purposes and what it may or may not connect the individual to in many arenas not yet accepted or tolerated by modern science.

There is a razon's edge between the village medicine man/woman and the village idiot, cast out.  Cultural perception, timing, many things have to do with it. :D
« Last Edit: November 10, 2011, 03:00:01 PM by WhiteTigerForever »

Offline Oniya

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Re: Why Creative People Are Eccentric
« Reply #42 on: November 10, 2011, 03:43:37 PM »
It's more that 'razor's edge' that I was trying to get at.  Again, there's nothing 'mind-blowing' about any of those eccentricities that I mentioned - they were simply something a bit outside the average expectation.  I deliberately chose scientists for my examples because most non-scientists consider them intelligent and possibly a bit stodgy.  Sagan was one that most people were exposed to (through Cosmos), and I'll admit that I was surprised to learn that little tidbit about him.  Feynman is on the other end of the scale - anecdotes of how strange he was are a dime a dozen, but he could also 'fit in' with the suited, stodgy set.  At least long enough for pictures.  ;D 

Offline WhiteTigerForever

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Re: Why Creative People Are Eccentric
« Reply #43 on: November 10, 2011, 05:08:51 PM »
I began to love Sagan from my astronomy classes back in the day..lol.  I had never watched his show or knew about it until I looked into him as a person more.  *weakness for astrophysics, math, chem, physics majors* hee hee (ooops I just gave away my husbands majors before he said...."Okay, I've accomplished all this.", and then said, "Now what am I going to do with it?", then changed his major and started all over in teaching...lol  ;D  So those will be the subjects he will teach at a later level for the young 15 to 19 age group.  (Or at least that's his goals atm besides... us.. ;D but your point in this topic I completely agree with Oniya! 

Offline Jacqueline

Re: Why Creative People Are Eccentric
« Reply #44 on: November 10, 2011, 05:17:00 PM »
Wow, I found this article rather fascinating. Thanks for sharing it Star!

Offline Serephino

Re: Why Creative People Are Eccentric
« Reply #45 on: November 12, 2011, 10:31:54 PM »
It's interesting to me because I've been wondering about this.  It seems to me like there are a lot of people here that aren't quite 'normal', myself included.  It's nice to know you're not alone.

I sleep with the TV on too, and a fan.  They mix together nicely for white noise.  If I don't have it I can fall asleep, but I can't stay asleep.  If the power or cable goes out while I'm sleeping I'll wake up within the hour, and will keep waking up every hour or so until it either comes back on or it's time to get up.  My boyfriend sees no problem with shutting off the cable to save money.  I'd sleep eventually.....

I can't read with a lot of noise around me though.  I can't concentrate on what I'm reading.  I have to have absolute quiet for that, though my brain comes up with alternative plots as I read.  My stupid brain is incapable of doing one thing at a time.

The absolute worst is when I have so many thoughts going at once I can't make sense of any of them.  It's like my mind is blank with extremely random bits of a thought popping to the front every so often.  *screams*

Offline Oniya

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Re: Why Creative People Are Eccentric
« Reply #46 on: November 12, 2011, 10:39:40 PM »
If you want to cut out the cable, get yourself a cheap radio and tune it to or near a talk station.  Since you're using it for white (or slightly beige) noise, it shouldn't matter if you can't pick it up exactly clearly. 

Offline WhiteTigerForever

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Re: Why Creative People Are Eccentric
« Reply #47 on: November 13, 2011, 10:46:59 AM »
WOOT! for a desperate need for massive white noise, usually in the form of fans blowing away from me.  If the sounds go off, I wake up, and then even still have trouble sleeping.  The paradox is that if there is the slightest draft on me, I can't take it and have to cover ears and body...@,@... go figure... eccentric is an understatement...lol! (and that's just my quirky sleeping habits... he he

Offline manlocksol

Re: Why Creative People Are Eccentric
« Reply #48 on: November 25, 2011, 12:09:45 PM »
I notice that the more eccentric a personality is, then often the more creative the person. Not always but often.

I think most people have slight eccentricities and most spend their lives trying to hide them. But some don't care to hide them or are simply more eccentric than others.

I like to think of myself as fairly imaginative and have as many character .... nuances as the next person. Whether there is a connection? Who knows.

Good article, really good :)

Offline Nicholas

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Re: Why Creative People Are Eccentric
« Reply #49 on: November 25, 2011, 12:54:04 PM »
I do not know if I am eccentric. I think that only other people really can judge that! I am an artist and I consider myself quite creative in my field, but eccentric? I dunno! ~laughs~

As for other people I know? I do not think that any of them is eccentric. Unique, certainly, maybe with their very own little quirks and stuff, but I don't consider them really eccentric!