“You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.”― Maya Angelou
That might be true, but sometimes, you have a job getting started.
If I ever feel jaded and lacking in inspiration, here’s what I do to unleash my creativity.
Make sure you are in a relaxed frame of mind whenever you are working on something important, as stress or any other kind of negative emotion will hinder creativity. This is why Google and Yahoo employees are allowed games, pets, and music in the workplace. Anything that makes them feel comfortable will enhance the quality of the ideas.
Have An Open Mind
Be open to different ways of exploring a challenge, and avoid the temptation to automatically jump to conclusions and assume you know the answer. Consider as many different possibilities as you can, the best ideas usually come after considering many.
No matter your level of intellect, your brain can only hold one thought at a time, so focus your complete attention on the task at hand. The more you allow yourself to become distracted the less brain power you will have available for solving your primary task.
If you have specific written intensely desired goals, your creative mind will be given a major boost. With clearly defined goals you will find thinking up great new ideas a lot easier.
Expect To Find The Answer
Don’t go into something saying: “This is impossible” or “I could never do that”. Rather approach the task as if there was a logical solution, and always confidently expect to find the answer. It may not come to you immediately, but it will eventually.
Define The Situation
Make sure you clearly understand what you are working with. If you go into something with only a vague idea, you will most likely end up frustrated and unhappy. So try to educate yourself as much as you can, and make sure you clearly understand what you are trying to do.
The more questions you ask the more answers you will get. Try asking obvious questions first and then consider the opposite to that answer. Ask what other people would do in your situation. The more curious you can become the more creative you will be.
Use Positive Language
Avoid using negative limiting language such as “problem”, “can’t”, “no” and instead, use “challenge” or “opportunity”. Remember, you have complete control over the way you feel, so be careful about the words you breath into life and how you speak to yourself. It’s called “Spelling” for a reason…
Write 22 Answers
If you have a task that you are trying to solve but can’t seem to think up any good ideas, try writing down a list of 22 answers to the challenge you face.
The first few answers are likely to come easily, as these will come from your conscious mind. The last few answers will be the most difficult, but they will usually be the most valuable, as they will come from your subconscious. However, for this method to work you must complete the list in one sitting!
Over to you. What tips would you add for unleashing your creativity?