Creativity always comes as a surprise to us; therefore we can never count on it and we dare not believe in it until it has happened. In other words, we would not consciously engage upon tasks whose success clearly requires that creativity be forthcoming. Hence, the only way in which we can bring our creative resources fully into play is by misjudging the nature of the task, by presenting it to ourselves as more routine, simple, undemanding of genuine creativity than it will turn out to be.
In his critically-acclaimed biography, Worldly Philosopher: The Odyssey of Albert O. Hirschman, Jeremy Adelman, writes that Hirschman was greatly influenced by Italian intellectual Eugenio Colorni, who viewed doubt as an essential and very positive part of the creative process:
Colorni believed that doubt was creative because it allowed for alternative ways to see the world, and seeing alternatives could steer people out of intractable circles and self-feeding despondency. Doubt, in fact, could motivate: freedom from ideological constraints opened up political strategies, and accepting the limits of what one could know liberated agents from their dependence on the belief that one had to know everything before acting, that conviction was a precondition for action.
The very counter-intuitive views of Hirschman and Colorni turn commonly accepted ideas of productivity on its head. Stumbling and doubt are a big part of making ANYTHING.
We’re with them.