Creativity is not just for the “creative”. People often assume that this is an exclusive trait of the artistic individuals. This is a common misconception. Creativity is not a characteristic, but a skill that can be mastered. Only because it seems as if the artsy types are better at this, doesn’t mean that you can’t also learn how to be creative. The question is not whether you are creative or not, but whether you are using your whole potential.
You don’t need to play an instrument or be the next Picasso. Creativity manifests in different aspects of our life. Even something as simple as a conversation can be considered a creative act. The problem is that creativity is quite sporadic. Although, you cannot take a full control over it, you can use some tricks to stimulate your unconventional thinking. It creates anxiety and prohibits the brain to concentrate. Try cleaning your space even if you feel comfortable with your clutter and see the difference.
1. Be playful
When you are trapped in a mundane and familiar environment, your mind becomes lazy. Creativity and playfulness are strongly related. Think about kids and their ability to use imagination in everything they do. At a first glance their ideas may look outrageous and irrational, but they surely are innovative and unique as well. Children perceive the world as a giant playground. You should do it too. Be curious and open. Embrace even the wackiest and most random thought that comes to your mind. Most importantly, don’t be afraid to share them. Being constantly conscious about other people’s opinion is not healthy. So what if your suggestion is silly? You will be amazed by the amount of solutions that came out from jokes.
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2. Tidy up
You are probably sick and tired of hearing that messiness is a typical characteristic of creative individuals. Forget about this stereotype. Not all messy people are masterminds. Some successful individuals like Steve Jobs and Einstein, were able to flourish in chaos. These types of people have the urge to live outside of the boundaries. The same goes for cleaning and organising. After all, creativity is all about thinking outside of the conventional reasoning.
Trashing your desk or room by no means will result in waking up one day full of genius ideas. In reality, clutter can have a negative impact on the way your brain functions. It can disturb your flow of thoughts and decrease your efficiency. Eventually the physical clutter becomes a psychological clutter.
3. Get distracted
Sometimes, we all get in a creative rut. The buzzing and fusing in your mind when you frantically look for a bright idea is a familiar feeling. All you want to do in this situation is to turn your brain off. Although it seems logical, this is a wrong strategy. Don’t simply empty your mind. You need to keep it busy by focusing on another unrelated task. In this way your unconscious mind will have time to find a solution. Maybe with a quick house cleaning?
4. Prime your mind
Recent studies show that you can actually train your mind to be creative. For example, your environment can shape your way of thinking more than you suspect. Even the background smell can have huge impact on your habits. So you may want to fill your space with different unconventional items like modern art paintings. When you are exposed these pieces, your mind is bombarded with subliminal stimuli that increase your creativity.
Stereotypes are also useful. According to some researches, exposing an individual to a visual or verbal pattern can prime their behavior. Only by imagining something creative like an artsy person or a painting can increase your creativity.
5. Exercise physically and mentally
Engaging in a physical activity is a perfect way for cleaning up your mind. You need at least twenty minutes of exercising a day. In addition, you should also take a walk whenever possible. On the other hand, meditation will help you preserve a clear perspective.
6. Connect the dots
Great ideas are not born from nothing. Nope, this is not how creativity works. It’s all about seeing the hidden relationships between two seemingly unrelated concepts. In its essence creativity is finding a pattern and applying it productively to something else. It’s not that difficult after all. As a matter of fact, creative ideas are so simple, that you can’t believe you didn’t think of that first.
7. Look For inspiration
Stay open minded and try to employ multiple perspectives. Create a journal where you can write down any interesting thoughts that come to you. It can be a dream or something that made an impression on you during the day. You need to consciously and actively look for inspiration everywhere in your surroundings. This will help you notice different connections and find unconventional solutions.