Warning: it’s about to get scary.
This concept we’re about to discuss is fun and helpful. When you rearrange the elements and solve a problem creatively the blocks you used establish their own new separate entity and soon start becoming an alternate “flat reality.” People may not understand it but if your solution works they will accept it and move on. Your creative solution from the weird process you struggled to create is glazed over and used by everyone else without question.
Congratulations! You have now added to the realities of the people around you. This means effective creative problem solving can be defined as a redefining or adding to reality. Your solution never replaces what was there before, it takes its place alongside the original reality. People may not use the old solution as much but it's still just as available as the new solution. Reality wasn't erased or used up by the creation of new solution.
That's the great thing about creative problem solving: it takes place completely in your mind where you don't have to exchange physical objects for each other, unlike the laws of thermodynamics. You simply exchange time for thoughts and solutions. You still end up with your original block of reality. Because someone broke something down into its parts it can be put back together or rearrange it we have the ability to make new things without losing the ability to use, create, and understand the old ones.
This is improvement. The end goal of creative problem solving: recognizing and using foundational building blocks to create a new solution.
- Mark Baral, 2018