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The “vuja de” mindset

🌈 Abstract

The article discusses the concept of "vuja de" - the opposite of "déjà vu", where one looks at familiar things in a new light to foster creativity. It explores how acquiring diverse experiences and looking at them through one's personal lens can lead to creative ideas. The article also provides strategies to encourage this "vuja de" mindset, such as rejecting the default, being prolific, diversifying one's knowledge base, procrastinating, and being an experimental innovator.

🙋 Q&A

[01] Design

1. What is the concept of "vuja de" and how is it different from "déjà vu"?

  • "Vuja de" is the opposite of "déjà vu", where one sees new things that feel inexplicably familiar. "Vuja de" is about looking at familiar things in a new light.

2. How does an ethnographer's approach to observation and understanding relate to the concept of "vuja de"?

  • Ethnographers are trained to observe the world and see what nobody else has spotted, questioning things that others take for granted. This process of looking at the familiar in a new way is similar to the "vuja de" concept.

3. What is the role of one's personal lens and expertise in the creative process?

  • Creativity is not just about acquiring new knowledge, but also looking at that knowledge through one's own personal perspective and expertise. The collision of what is "out there" and what is "in here" (the ethnographer's mind) is what leads to creative insights.

4. What strategies does the article suggest to encourage the "vuja de" mindset?

  • The article suggests the following strategies:
    • Rejecting the default and not going with the first idea
    • Being prolific and generating a large number of ideas
    • Diversifying one's knowledge base
    • Procrastinating and allowing ideas to incubate
    • Being an experimental innovator and learning through trial and error

[02] Creativity

1. How does the article explain the relationship between creativity and one's lifetime of knowledge and skill?

  • The article suggests that creativity is not just about a single new piece of knowledge, but how that knowledge relates to one's pre-existing knowledge and skills in an interpretative sense. It uses the examples of Picasso and graphic designer Paula Scher to illustrate this point.

2. What is the role of originality in the creative process according to the article?

  • The article states that nothing is entirely original, and that we create by recombining the knowledge we already have in new ways. The more diverse our knowledge base, the more we experiment and produce, the more likely we are to come up with something creative.

3. What is the key to going beyond the limits of one's expertise to achieve creative breakthroughs?

  • The article suggests that the key is to deeply understand one's area of expertise and its limits, in order to then go beyond them and make new connections.
Shared by Daniel Chen ·
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