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What have you done recently to increase your creativity?
Everyone has the capacity to be creative. Sure, some people have a greater gift for creativity that others, and some people spend more time cultivating their creativity than others, too. But everyone can be creative.
The truth is, you’ll never know just how creative you really are unless you make an effort to “work” your creative side.
Obviously, if you are an artist, you paint – or sculpt – or draw. Musicians create and play music. Actors create characters on screen or stage. These people are in tune with their own creativity.
What about those of us who aren’t so inherently creative, but want to explore and grow our abilities? Are we limited in our ability to solve problems, invent new products, or create art?
It’s easy to understand what it takes to become more skilled at hitting a golf ball. It’s not quite as clear how someone should go about increasing their skill at creating.
How to Boost Your Creativity
The eight ideas presented below will help you explore and nurture the creativity you already have within you, that is just waiting to get out. It really is there inside you! You may be surprised how small changes can spark inspiration, whether you are looking for a novel approach to solving a problem, beginning a new craft, or redecorating your living room.
Change Your Environment
Many authors write in hotel rooms. Many painters work in studios separate from their homes.
Your creativity won’t be at the highest level in the places you spend the most time. A new environment can spark your creativity. If you’re feeling stuck, change your environment.
Your normal hangouts stimulate your normal thoughts and feelings.
Shake up your routine. Take your computer to a coffee shop. Take your sketch pad to the park. If you must stay home (or in another typical-for-you location), try working in a different room, or even a different chair. Do something to alter what is normal and see things from a different perspective.
Be Productive and Practice, Practice, Practice
Many ideas, on their own, are relatively worthless. That’s okay. It just means you have to come up with a lot of ideas before you find a good one you really like. Every “bad” idea gets you closer to a good one, and in that sense, there are no ideas. So be productive, and come up with lots and lots of ideas, because the more you produce, the more likely you are to hit on “the one”.
Some comedians have stated they write a hundred jokes before they find the one perfect line. Songwriters make similar claims. Many artists will sketch a scene multiple times until they feel they’ve captured it the way they want to, and only then do they begin to paint.
Try lots of different ways of doing things. Tweak your actions just a little every step of the way. Be willing to wade through a lot of bad ideas and put forth a lot of options.
Eventually, something WILL click!
“You can’t use up creativity. The more you use the more you have.”Maya Angelou
Don’t Try to Force Your Creativity
Yes, practice is important – but there will be times when you feel like you’ve “hit a wall” and just aren’t making any progress. If you’ve been focused on your creative project for a while and it’s just making you frustrated, take a break. Don’t force it.
Sometimes you may need to leave your project alone for an hour or even the rest of the day. You feel you’ve run out of ideas of ability, and you are getting annoyed.
Take a break. Have a drink of water, go for a walk outside, get some rest. Whatever you need to do to refill your tank is good, and the more your break differs from your creative project, the better off you are – this allows the mind to rest and reset.
Learn From the Wisdom of Others
Studying the masters of your field will give you a greater depth of knowledge. Learning about the ways others have approached your project will stimulate your brain to look at it in multiple ways.
Remember, even Michelangelo was an apprentice at one time.
Change Your Routine
Changing your environment while working on your creative project is beneficial. But so is changing up your routine in general. It may be uncomfortable to break your routine at first, but each time you do, your mind expands and adapts to the change. Fortunately, you don’t have to make huge transformations. Even the smallest adjustments to your everyday life can boost your creativity dramatically.
Wake up fifteen minutes earlier. Take a new route to work. Make a new recipe for dinner. Try a new exercise class.
Shake up your world just a little and you’ll kick your creativity into high gear.
It’s next to impossible to be creative when you’re constantly dealing with interruptions. Find a quiet, inspiring place to do your creative work and minimize your distractions.
If you are working on your computer, close out all tabs but the one you are working on. Let the phone go to voicemail. Turn off the tv. Don’t try to multitask. Give all your focus to your creative effort.
Release Your Mind and Be Bored
Boredom encourages daydreaming and reduces the activity of the logical parts of the brain.
With your logical centers taking a back seat, your creativity can shine through. Let your mind wander without any real focus, and you may be surprised at what randomly “pops” into your head.
This is why some of our best ideas seem to occur in the shower!
Be Creative When You Are Least Alert
It might seem logical that you’d be most creative when your brain is most active, but science has shown the opposite is true.
For example, if you’re a morning person, your best ideas will probably come at night. If you tend to be a little foggy early in the morning, this is your ideal time to work on a creative project.
“Creativity is inventing, experimenting, growing, taking risks, breaking rules, making mistakes, and having fun.”Mary Lou Cook
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Final Thoughts on 8 Ways to Increase Your Creativity
You can make the most of your creative gifts. There are well-established tips for increasing your creative powers, including these 8 Actions:
- Change Your Environment
- Be Productive
- Don’t Force Your Creativity
- Learn From Others
- Change Your Routine
- Create Solitude
- Be Bored
- Be Creative When You Are Least Alert
You never know precisely when a brilliant idea will hit, so increase the odds in your favor. Open your eyes to all of the ways you can increase your creativity and explore new areas of life.
Don’t forget to PIN this for future reference!