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ISTJ lack of creativity? Laziness when it comes to imagining? And by creativity, I'm referring to things such as creating your own ideas for an essay topic (as opposed to having assigned topics), etc
During my first year in college (last year), I took an American literature course, and I was terrified when the professor told us that we had to choose our own topics. I was indeed "lazy" in choosing a thesis, but not really brain-dead. I have to process things for weeks at a time in order to develop it. When I got stuck, I just started to force myself to going from something detailed, into something more general- until I got to a clear, detailed thesis. I came up with a brilliant thesis, as well as a great paper (took me three weeks to sort it all out in my mind).
I don't think that I "lack" creativity- but that with me, it needs to be fostered in my mind for a while. Like letting yeast dough rise- it takes me a while to sort it all out in my head before it ever gets put into words.
Are any other ISTJs like this?

As with most other types, we don't lack creativity when a topic interests us.
I think that this is very true too. I try to choose topics that are interesting to me, but sometimes it just isn't possible. When that happens, I force myself by going from the tiny details to a more broad, general thesis. (My professors have often commented on my abundance of details/specifics. It's both bad and good.)
 

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i find that when a professor gives as "free range" on an assignment or "lets us come up with our own ideas" it takes me a while to get started. I do projects a lot faster when the instructor actually tells me what they want!

That does not mean I lack "creativity", it means I don't know what the professor is looking for and will debate with myself until i come to an acceptable conclusion as to what he/she is looking for. And then go from there. Generally, I find that this technique does not result in my best work. too much time, energy and brain power is wasted in trying to figure out what the teacher is actually wanting us to do, leaving me too frustrated to really make it creative.

I find myself doing some of my better work when there are actual guidelines as to what is wanted. I cover those and from the basics, i get helluva creative!! (for example: A P-Point presentation on a modern genocide. The prerequisite was 5-10 minutes long, covering the basic time-line and events. simple right? well I got all that and then some!! 30+ minute presentation with over 60 slides!! :crazy: and, yes, I got 100%! one cannot say that I am not thorough)

OWL
 

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The prerequisite was 5-10 minutes long, covering the basic time-line and events. simple right? well I got all that and then some!! 30+ minute presentation with over 60 slides!! :crazy: and, yes, I got 100%! one cannot say that I am not thorough)
I can completely relate to that. I, with my friend, was doing a group project on teenage health and issues. We went into so much detail that our assignment took 60 pages while every other groups was max. 4 pages. The look on teachers face when she received our copy of work was well, priceless. :crazy:

So, in short we can use our creativity if a topic interest us and its much easier if we have some form of a guideline to go on with. We are also very thorough in what we are interested in. But if we have to start from scratch, then its much harder for us and it takes us some time to begin.

So, I was wondering if this has something to do with our S prefernce? Is it because we are sensers that we are likely to use our creativity by relating it to something that we have sensed somewhere (possibly in past experience) rather than N people, who can think of abstract ideas without having to necessarily 'sensed' it.
 

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Open question. Do you guys relate to this? And if so, what could get you motivated to tap into your creativity? And by creativity, I'm referring to things such as creating your own ideas for an essay topic (as opposed to having assigned topics), etc
I relish free topics. Coming up with fresh interesting subjects/viewpoints has never been a problem. I'm free to say what I think about that subject, and I know I can write reasonably well ('work' essays at least, as opposed to fiction-writing).

I approach assigned topics a tad more cautiously. It requires more energy to try to figure out exactly what the professor wants, and guidelines definitely do help at this point. Not as fun as a free topic essay, but I can usually make it fun by the time I'm done with it.
 

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I'd rather it be assigned. Like some others have posted, choosing a topic wastes so much time that could have been used nailing down the specifics/details of the assignment.
A word of caution: when some professors say 3-5 pages, they mean 3-5 pages ... as in if you write 8, you'll be docked. I try to write about ½ page more than what's required just to cover my bases, but that's about it. Learned that the hard way in one of my courses a while back.
 

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I'd rather it be assigned. Like some others have posted, choosing a topic wastes so much time that could have been used nailing down the specifics/details of the assignment.
A word of caution: when some professors say 3-5 pages, they mean 3-5 pages ... as in if you write 8, you'll be docked. I try to write about ½ page more than what's required just to cover my bases, but that's about it. Learned that the hard way in one of my courses a while back.
Yep. I once watched people in my class do a social studies presentation over about 50 minutes despite the fact that the teacher said it must be between 10-15 minutes. Despite a great presentation, the teacher docked them quite a few points(woulda been a 95 but ended up an 88 because they went way over the time limit).

I absolutely agree with you about assigned topics. I'd rather be given the topic ahead of time so I can start getting my hands dirty than spend time coming up with one. I prefer facts and statistics to creativity but I wouldn't say I'm not creative. My English teacher told me last year that she thinks I'd be a good writer.
 
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I'm not particularly creative unless I find something fascinating. It simply isn't my nature to be creative. Sometimes, I try to be creative, but it doesn't always work nor do I keep enough interest to keep with it. Interestingly, my writing skills were considered pretty positive from my teachers. Despite this, I know my writing isn't that great.

I actually tried to make something a little different by creating a paper that involved relationships and while I did good on the paper, I personally think the paper is a freaking abortion. Maybe my work isn't that bad, but I think they were a little too lenient. Guess it's just a difference in personalities XD. An ESFP and an ISTJ are going to think way differently.
 

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Interestingly, my writing skills were considered pretty positive from my teachers. Despite this, I know my writing isn't that great.
Don't sell yourself short. Your writing is better than probably 90% of the population. With a good dose of creativity, you could write very well.
 
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To answer the question:

I guess you can put it that way. I'm just not a great artist. I'm not the type of person that can create a mishmash of new ideas.

That's probably the reason why back in grade school I always valued the contributions and random ideas of my more creative partners on projects. Their strengths along with my ethic and organization always made for a decent combo.
 

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As with most other types, we don't lack creativity when a topic interests us.


I agree with this as well. We do have Ne as our fourth function so I would think that if we can utilize it then we can be very creative. I find that I can be extremely creative when working on something of great personal interest but when it is something like choosing an essay topic, I have trouble coming up with ideas.
 

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My mom is an ISTJ, and she's pretty creative when she's interested in what she's doing. For instance, she can be pretty good with making homemade holiday cards, painting and writing poetry - when she feels up to it. If she doesn't want to, her mind is just a screaming blank creativity-wise. I remember that as a kid, I used to ask her to come up with her own bedtime stories to entertain me, and she couldn't think of any at all. In the end, I made up stories myself or daydreamed to entertain myself before I drifted off to sleep xD
 
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Discussion Starter #16
As with most other types, we don't lack creativity when a topic interests us.
Yes, I'm seeing this in my brother a lot. It's when it's a subject he's not interested in, he calls me for help. And sometimes it sounds to me like he's just asking me to think of ideas for him lol

So question - when a topic doesn't interest an ISTJ, what is a good way to help foster ideas?
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I relish free topics. Coming up with fresh interesting subjects/viewpoints has never been a problem. I'm free to say what I think about that subject, and I know I can write reasonably well ('work' essays at least, as opposed to fiction-writing).

I approach assigned topics a tad more cautiously. It requires more energy to try to figure out exactly what the professor wants, and guidelines definitely do help at this point. Not as fun as a free topic essay, but I can usually make it fun by the time I'm done with it.
I relate to this 95%. I know I can write reasonably well and create a strong argument for an essay backed with solid research, given that it is a free topic. And I like having the freedom to explore and come up with my own idea.

When it comes to assigned topics, I relate in that it requires more energy to try to figure out exactly what the prof. wants. Usually, I'll take some time on my own to do the preliminary research and then bounce back my ideas with the prof. to determine/get a sense of what he is really looking for. (Sometimes, they don't state exactly what they want or guidelines to frame the work, and in these cases, you really have to squeeze it out of them). That said, I cannot for the life of me make these things fun and this accounts for the -5% i can't relate. :tongue: Usually what happens is this --> once I figure out exactly what the professor wants and I have the answer in my mind, I find myself "dragging my feet" to work on this, because now all the fun has been taken out. The only pleasure I get is at the end, when I can go back and carefully edit and rewrite my work to make all the information more concise.
 

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Yes, I'm seeing this in my brother a lot. It's when it's a subject he's not interested in, he calls me for help. And sometimes it sounds to me like he's just asking me to think of ideas for him lol

So question - when a topic doesn't interest an ISTJ, what is a good way to help foster ideas?
I suppose it really depends on the person in question. I love airplanes, history, animal planet and talking politics/religion and AFV....but not everybody does

OWL
 
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So question - when a topic doesn't interest an ISTJ, what is a good way to help foster ideas?
Emphasize its practical applications.
Then say it has 'a substantial impact on today's politics and society'.

Just dress it up a bit so it sounds like it's an 1) important 2) fact.
 
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Emphasize its practical applications.
Then say it has 'a substantial impact on today's politics and society'.

Just dress it up a bit so it sounds like it's an 1) important 2) fact.
Exactly. Establish relevance and we're on board. However, it must be relevance and not consequences. Relevance = importance to the grand scheme of things. Consequences = Because I said so and I'm the one that writes your paycheck (or the one that gives you the grade).

We can see the necessity of avoiding some consequences--and we'll do the work, but our heart won't be in it.
 
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