Everyone knows that you need to apply creativity to your business to make it succeed. This creative effort has a clear end in mind – to develop innovative products or streamline your business processes to increase profits. But, what can you do when you are just not feeling creative? Here are three great ways to give your creativity an instant boost.
1. Take Pictures
A fantastic way to get your creativity flowing is to grab a camera or your smartphone and take some pictures. It’s an easy way to create something no matter where you are located. You can take pictures at home, at work, or anywhere.
To make it more fun and creatively stimulating, pick something as a theme. A good theme is to choose a color and look for things to snap that are that color. Another idea is to pick a common object and try to take pictures of it in a new way. A friend of mine loves to take pictures of cars – focusing on the shape of the headlights, the lines along the side of the door, and other unique shapes.
Of course, your photos don’t have to be professional quality. Like all creativity exercises, the main purpose is to get your ideas and inspiration flowing. You may learn to see things in a different way and find yourself racing to your idea file to record your thoughts. Save the photos on your smartphone for a quick creativity boost at any time.
In today’s world, we are all hyper-connected which is a great thing for communicating and entertaining yourself. But, it’s not always good for your creativity. All of that digital information can be a major distraction.
Sometimes a good way to stimulate your creativity is to turn everything off. You may find it easier to let the creativity flow when you’re sitting at a desk (or in a comfortable chair) with a pen and notebook rather than when you have a file open on your computer. Try disconnecting and living for a while without your computer or phone. Without the electronic distractions, you may find it easier to let your mind wander.
I know this may sound terrifying! If you’re a digital information addict, it may seem hard to go offline. There’s an addictive quality about the Internet and all of its information. But start with ten minutes at a time and gradually go longer. If you find that disconnecting helps your creativity flow, try to go for a day or two without your computer or phone and see what happens.
3. Think in Reverse
When you’re brainstorming or dealing with a problem, many people think in positives. For example, you are thinking about what you want to create or the solution you want to achieve. But sometimes it’s useful to think in reverse.
Instead of thinking about the outcome you want, think about the outcome you don’t want.
For example, you want to design a product that will solve a specific problem for your customers. One way to find that product is to turn it around and think about what would NOT help your customers. Sometimes thinking this way helps you better realize the qualities that a product needs to have.
If you are creating a work of visual art, you want to express a certain idea to those who see it. Instead, think of the idea you don’t want to express. What associations do you not want to make in the viewer’s mind?
By focusing on what you don’t want to do, you can bring clarity to what you DO want to accomplish with your creative work.
Try one of these ideas today and give your creativity a boost!
Steve Sponseller is an Intellectual Property Attorney and Innovation Strategist. He has 25 years of experience helping more than 1000 inventors and business leaders identify, develop, and protect innovative ideas. Get a complimentary copy of his Innovation Strategy Checklist to start creating a steady stream of innovative ideas that give your company a competitive advantage.