Creativity doesn’t have to be hit or miss. All it takes is a bit of practice and letting go of trying too hard. Here are some simple steps to follow that will greatly boost your creativity.
Creativity naturally comes and goes.
Just when you need it most it seems to lie dormant, yet when you’re off daydreaming or tending to a menial task insight comes to you seemingly from out of the blue. This is completely natural yet frustrating. It would be nice if there was a creative switch inside we could flip on and off at will. While this isn’t exactly possible, you can learn to dip into that creative fountain more often than not.
Keep a small notebook and pen with you at all times.
A good way to train your mind to think more creatively is to write down any ideas that come to you; bits of interesting conversations you overhear, dreams you’ve had, plans for your future, or a few lines from some of your favorite songs. What you’re doing here is teaching your mind to focus on your creative thoughts more often. By getting them down on paper you’re letting your conscious know you take your creativity seriously and are making it part of your life. In turn this teaches your subconscious to take notice of helpful thoughts and things around you, then comes up with ideas quicker and easier.
Most common places to find creativity.
You never know when creativity will strike, and that’s why you want to carry around a pen and small notebook. The most common time creativity flows freely is when we’re falling asleep. In that perfect place of semi-consciousness many people often receive their most influential ideas. Others find their creativity flows best when in the shower or soaking in a tub. Still others report that it’s highest when mowing the lawn, washing dishes, folding laundry, or taking a walk. In other words, your brain is doing some mindless task. You aren’t trying with all your might to come up with a great idea or solution to a problem.
Don’t force it.
There’s nothing worse than trying to find solutions or come up with an idea and your gray matter simply won’t cooperate. Trying too hard is one of the biggest obstacles to creativity and it quickly leads to burnout. The best thing to do when you come up against that mental brick wall is to stop what you’re doing and take a break. Do something enjoyable or mundane. Take a walk around the block, go sit on a bench at the park and watch the pigeons, listen to music, do a load of laundry or organize your sock drawer. By getting your mind off of trying to be creative, you’re freeing up your mental gears so they can start turning again.
Learning to be more creative is a lot like building up your biceps. All it takes is a bit of practice and a little time each day to strengthen those weak and flabby idea muscles.