Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi has listed nine contradictory traits that are frequently present in the dozens of creative people he has studied. The seeming contradictions make creative people hard to understand. I identify with all of these except number 5.
Some of my favorite seeming contradictions:
- smart and naive
- playful and productive (responsibility and irresponsibility)
- attentive to real detail yet fluent in imagination and fantasy
- genuinely humble yet displaying a strong sense of pride
- rebellious and conservative
- very passionate about their work, but extremely objective about it