Creativity is a muscle that needs exercise. Yet, like our other muscles, sometimes we get busy and it’s easy to fall into a pattern where we take a path that’s known has the least resistance. Then, when it comes time to really push ourselves for something new, it’s like hitting a brick wall.
That’s why it pays to do a little creative brainstorming not just when you need to solve a problem, but also regularly to bank up fresh ideas that are easy to use whenever you need them.
Forget the cliché about thinking outside of the box. Think your way inside, around, on top of, and encircling the solution. Here are a few suggestions to get you started.
- Play with toys like Etch A Sketch or games like Pictionary while you work; you’ll stimulate your brain and reduce stress.
- Don’t focus on the finding the solution.
- Play word association.
- Write down everything—even if it seems completely ridiculous.
- Set a time limit of 1 hour, then move on to something else.
- Play classical music. It relaxes you and it also stimulates the brain.
- Leave your comfort zone and go to some place new.