Creativity Test and Maslow's Theory of Self-Actualization

Posted on 2018-04-27 By Joanna

Creativity is one of the most important skills to develop when we are on the path of self-actualization.

Abraham Maslow, one of the most important figures in psychology of self-actualization, said:

“My feeling is that the concept of creativeness and the concept of the healthy, self actualizing, fully human person seem to be coming closer and closer together, and may perhaps turn out to be the same thing.”


Perhaps then, creativity and self-actualization are actually one and the same process, as being pointed out by Maslow in his theory of creativity? Both processes point to an innate human potential for innovation, self-expression, growth, and satisfaction. Creativity does imply similar, or even the same experience of expressing this innate and difficult to explain energy, often compared to feeling as if one was being led by some unknown force.

Maslow has discovered that each self-actualized individual is creative. He observed this characteristic to be rather distinct from what is commonly perceived as 'genius' and saw it as a universal trait that each human possesses. This skill or a trait expresses itself not so much in usual creative activities, such as writing or painting, but rather through every activity we are engaged in. Perhaps we could call it a way of life.

“Furthermore, as we have seen, these individuals are less inhibited, less constricted, less bound, in a word, less enculturated. In more positive terms, they are more spontaneous, more natural, more human.”

(Maslow, “Motivation and Personality”, 1954)

Unfortunately, most people lose it due to being 'enculturated', as Maslow observed.

“Most human being lose this as they become enculturated, but some few individuals seem either to retain this fresh and native, direct way of looking at life, or if they have lost it, as most people do, they later in life recover it.

(Maslow, “Motivation and Personality”, 1954)

This creativity test has been created in order to help you to determine the extent to which your creativity has been developed and expressed. It's based on the original creativity model devised by Frank Williams who looked at a creative person as possessing eight distinguished traits/abilities:

  • 1. Fluency
  • 2. Flexibility
  • 3. Originality
  • 4. Elaboration, the expansion, enlargement, enrichment or embellishment of ideas
  • 5. Risk-taking, experimenting, trying new challenges
  • 6. Complexity, the ability to create structure out of chaos
  • 7. Curiosity
  • 8. Imagination

Take the creativity test





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