If you think that your creativity was lost when you saw your first school teacher, you are wrong. Schools do crush creativity by teaching you to follow the rules and color within the lines.
And if you are afraid (or reluctant) to be wrong, you will never learn how to become more creative and innovative. Look at the bright side of things: you were taught the rules. Learning how to artistically break them is much easier.
Everyone can become more creative, if they want to. Still, just wanting to enhance your creativity isn’t enough. Most likely you don’t have a ‘creativity switch’ that generates brand new ideas at your will. If you do, you don’t have to read about methods of creativity and innovation…
Boost your creativity: what goes in, comes out
Your mind is like a garden. Without proper care, the weeds will spoil the whole thing. The more you stimulate your brain with brand new images, sounds, thoughts, impressions, interactions, the more creative ideas will come out. In this sense anything new can effectively enhance your creativity:
- going to see an enlightening movie
- reading a good book
- learning a new language
- learning to play an instrument
- trying a new sport
- making a new friend
- listening to new inspirational music etc.
All of these activities let you think outside of your regular patterns, outside the box.
To exercise your creative juices, you need to work on expanding your innovation horizons. Below are a few practical tips on how to boost creativity:
- read a lot, cyberloaf in pursuit of pleasurable blogs and articles: reading enhances your mental ability and stretches your brain to the point when you are amazed at how much creativity it can produce in time
- be more curious and always ask questions about what interests you: “What if…”, “Why not”, “How else can I do it?”, “How can this be enhanced?” etc. Questions are the root of knowledge and creative thinking, they fuel our innovative fire
- write down your ideas: creative ideas can come at the most unexpected times, so be always ready to capture them before they fade away
- work out regularly: ‘jog’ your ideas loose, do yoga, boxing or anything you like best: exercising on a regular basis boosts your creativity, and it’s one of the many reasons why we need to work out
- go out more often, mix up your environment and change the perspective: if you’re a freelancer, try working in a café or in the backyard occasionally; don’t like this idea? Just sprawl on the floor instead of working at your desk!
- have times of relaxation: stress and creativity are mutually exclusive states, so if you’re tired of reading just take a walk on the beach or play some sport outside: anything that relaxes you will do, as long as you don’t get all lazy
- learn creativity techniques to become more creative and innovative
- develop characteristics of creative people – what you believe, you become!
Being creative comes natural to someone who genuinely enjoys it rather than stresses out about the outcome. So just let your ideas shine and let creativity become your passion. The outcome will amaze you one day, but only if you don’t think too hard about it. And try to be easy on yourself, because self-limits can block your creativity. Just remove the barriers, do things the best you can and the ideas will start flowing.
Learn how to improve your creativity from the best
You can achieve the best results you can if you learn from some of the most creative people ever: artists, writers, creativity coaches. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes when you create something unique. Remember the following quote when you feel that something doesn’t work: “I didn’t fail 10,000 times. I successfully eliminated 10,000 combinations that wouldn’t work” (Thomas Edison).
The most powerful muse of all is your inner child. So try not to lose connection with this part of your inner self and cultivate your creativity. You can do it by drawing your goal with crayons or markers. Use your imagination and draw something you passionately strive for. This will help you get in touch with your inner misbehaving kid who is creative enough to know no rules or borders.
Rice Freeman-Zachery, the author of “Living the Creative Life: Ideas and Inspiration from Working Artists”, has this to say about how to improve your creativity: “Instead of looking at the world as it is, look at everything as being full of possibilities. If you’re an artist, you look at everything as a possibility and inspiration because you know that ideas can come from anywhere.”