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The Difference between Being Productive and Being Creative

It’s important to be both productive and creative in academia. They are two sides of the same coin – they face different directions, but they come together to make up a whole entity – your thesis.

Many people prefer one function over the other. Since your early days in school, you may recall some classmates who worked hard on their homework and who always seemed to be studying. Their level of productivity was probably high because they followed a routine where they always knew what was coming next. They had a system in place, and with no unexpected changes, they could refine this system until they became very efficient.

You might recall some other students who weren’t particularly studious, and who seemed more disorganized with their routine. They might have surprised teachers and classmates alike with high test scores, or by coming up with new insight to solve problems. To be creative in this way, you cannot worry about deadlines and following all the rules. The mind has to be free to discover opportunities and new ideas.

So how do these issues come up while working on your thesis? If you are someone who is productively challenged, it may become difficult to work for hours at a time. You may not feel “inspired” enough to complete the piece you are working on and leave it for later – only to find that you have lost that train of thought entirely. It may be that you have a tendency to move from one idea to another, without actually making a solid argument out of any of them. You need to remember that structure and consistency are as important as your creativity, and that even a particularly brilliant idea will suffer if the other two are not in place.

There are fewer people who would gracefully accept to being creatively challenged. Though if you can, you are taking a big step towards your self-awareness and improvement. Your own strengths are admirable, especially if you have the discipline to finish a long task. The problems you run into will be when you don’t know what will happen next – when you need to take your argument in a new direction, but you don’t know about the methodology of execution. At this point don’t get bogged down by rechecking your references. The information you already have is probably all correct and proper – you just need to take it down a different path. Get some help from people who know the nuances of creative research, like the experts from thesishelpindia.com. Another common trap you may fall into is just to keep writing – to keep your productivity level high at the cost of the content and quality. When you notice yourself doing this, stop and take a break. Discuss ideas with peers and supervisors.

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