Technique N°13 - Paradox it
Linking resources and problems creates great ideas!
At eÿeka we believe that everyone is creative as soon as one opens his mind and lets ideas flow freely. To help creators from everywhere tackle brand issues, we are providing you with Creative Techniques. Browse them, play with them and add them to your daily creative process to generate your best ideas!
A problem has never just one dimension; it is a mix of doable and impossible things. A good way to embrace the complexity of a problem, is to use the paradox analogy and focus on its main features to generate new ideas.
To identify the different sides of a problem, three techniques can be used:
- The paradox that states a fact that seems likely but leads to a nonsense
- The analogy which is using a solution that solved an analogous problem
- The ability to focus on the core of the problem
To apply those techniques, follow the steps below:
- Start by converting your problem into a paradox: a statement or proposition that, despite how it sounds (or apparently sounds) reasoning from acceptable premises, leads to a conclusion that seems senseless, logically unacceptable, or self-contradictory.
To do so, answer the following questions:
- What is the opposite of your problem?
- What is the contradiction of your problem?
- Complete the sentence: “The paradox was that… unless it does…”
- Summarize it in a 2-word concept (like the title of a song or a book) to capture the essence of the paradox and make it easier to work with. Focus on one adjective and a noun.
- “Hated cleansing”
- “Disinfecting rejection”
- “Convenient disenchantment”
- List the analogies (a comparison between two things, typically on the basis of their structure and for the purpose of explanation or clarification) and select the best:
- Is there a natural analogy (animals, plants, or non-living things)?
- Is there an object that behaves the same way?
One can think of the dogs that smell other dogs and use their pee to mark their territory.
- Now find one the unique feature or activity of the best analogy: what is its main characteristic?
- Apply this feature or an equivalent to your problem to find new ideas.
- Develop one of the new ideas you generated.
The paradox technique lets you play with your problem and transform it into something easier to embrace.
Did you find new ideas to solve the problem? If yes, congrats!