I saw on a funny motivational poster once that had a picture of a shiny, white robot and below the picture was a quote, “If 80% of your work output is not creative, soon robots will do your job”.
Are you safe? Does your job help you to expand your creative capacity? Or is it so mundane that you secretly hope robots would take over it, so you could focus on doing something else?
Even if you don’t consider yourself to be creative, creativity is still an important part of your life and here’s why…
Creativity goes hand in hand with our ability to generate new ideas and create new connections between different ideas to solve everyday problems.
Remember that time when you have a brilliant idea in the shower? Or when you managed to get an old printer to work by changing the settings? Or the time when you had just few ingredients in your fridge and you still came up with a great dish that you could put together? This is creativity!
Heck, life in itself is a creation, and I bet you that you are more creative than you realize.
It’s just a matter of taking the strain off your left, logical hemisphere and letting your creative mind be heard. Because, ultimately, it’s not just about being more efficient, or managing our time in the most efficient way. That’s what robots are for.
Our goal is to create. To think ‘out of the box’. To listen more to our intuition. To make our life more interesting, fun, colorful, and delicious. And that’s what makes our creative, right-brain thinking so important.
Two days ago I stumbled on a blog post, written for creative people on ways to boost creativity. Although, many of the tips given there are great to know, whether you consider yourself creative person or not.
Here the condensed version of 7 Ways to Boost Your Creativity and the main insights worth knowing:
1. Restrict yourself
Instead of following the path of “least resistance” and building off of older concepts, create a self-imposed restriction. Use fewer words in your blog posts, lesser chords in your song or fewer colors in your design.
Insight: Restrictions make the task more challenging, which in turn, boosts focus, motivation, and creativity.
2. Re-conceptualize the problem
Instead of focusing on the end goal of a creative project, re-visualize the problem from other, more meaningful, angles. Only then start working on solution itself.
Insight: Understanding and thinking about the problem, is just as important that thinking about the solution.
3. Separate work from consumption
Consume information in an “absorb state”, instead of multitasking.
Insight: Focused, distraction-free environment will help you to enter the state of ‘flow’ quickly and is one of the great ways to boost your creativity.
4. Stay positive
Research suggests that strong positive mood improves creativity.
Insight: Just thinking about love was shown to best encourage creative thinking.
5. Use counterfactual thinking
Counterfactual thinking, also known as asking, “What might have been?” has been shown to increase creativity for short periods of time.
Insight: When brainstorming the possible solutions of a problem, subtract or add “what if” elements and see how they can affect an outcome.
6. Daydream… after getting started
Research shows that daydreaming can boost creativity as it allows for incubation of ideas.
Insight: Daydreaming only works if you already have information to chew on.
7. Think about others
Several studies have demonstrated that when we believe our work would be used by others, we come up with better ideas.
Insight: Next time you need to come up with some great ideas, one of the awesome ways to boost your creativity, is to pretend you aren’t brainstorming them for yourself, but for your friend’s project?
If you are interested in the Creative Ways to Boost Your Learning Skills and the mind-boggling benefits of using your creative, right-brain thinking, read this post.