Creativity is an almost magical skill that all of us can make use of. If you don't consider yourself creative or recognize that you naturally contain the ability to create, be aware that activating creativity is more straightforward than it may seem. Taking a break from strenuous day-to-day activities and do enjoyable things that can free your mind and increase your creative power.
"Create with the heart; build with the mind" - Criss Jami
There are many ways to become more creative. Some of them are easy and can be practiced every day. Others are more difficult and require a lot of time, effort, strong will, and the desire to learn and improve. You don’t have to try them all. Pick those that inspire you and give them a shot because there's nothing to lose and a lot to gain.
"Vulnerability is the birthplace of innovation, creativity and change." - Brené Brown
6 Ways To Activate Creativity
1. Draw, paint, doodle, watercolor.
The mere act of engaging in art of any kind inspires all kinds of connections in the brain, so don’t fight the urge to doodle. Taking a moment each weekend to dust off your sketchbook and spend some time watercoloring alone or with a friend. It's so refreshing for the mind and soul to make art just for the fun of it.
2. Do something physical.
Research has shown that physical exercise helps to force you out of left brain dominant thinking and instead adopt a more creative mindset. Exercise also increases blood flow and oxygen to the brain, which intensifies mental clarity. Take advantage of aerobic workouts for how they help stimulate imagination and new ideas.
3. Embrace boredom.
Research confirms that being bored actually propels us towards deeper thinking and creativity. The thinking goes that a bored mind searches for stimulation, which moves it into the daydreaming state, which leads to new ideas.
Instead of filling every extra minute with productivity or scrolling through your phone, give your mind some breathing room. Let your mind wander, and who knows, you just might have the “aha moment” you were working so hard to achieve.
4. Watch a TED talk or listen to a podcast.
People often find that tuning into a powerful TED talk or listening to an interview with someone with a captivating story is a great way to shift perspective, quickly and without a lot of effort. There are so many inspiring people out there, and it's exciting to learn from someone who is out there truly innovating in their field.
5. Generate way more ideas than you think you actually need.
This is the single most common method among super creative thinkers. People who are able to generate a lot of ideas, both good and not-so-good, are more likely to have a few brilliant ideas than those who only come up with a couple of ideas. Block out time for free writing and come up with as many ideas around a problem as your brain can generate, even if they seem silly. Since creative people are prolific idea-generators, remember that they typically have more misses than hits. As Thomas Edison said, “Genius is one percent inspiration and 99 percent perspiration.”
6. Make time for play.
When we fully immerse ourselves in just doing what we enjoy, it stimulates outside-the-box thinking and silences our inner critic. Tinker with toys, build something, get outside… and most importantly, think like a kid!
"The chief enemy of creativity is good sense." - Pablo Picasso