5 Ways to Boost Your Creativity
Updated: Nov 20, 2019
Everyone is creative in some way. And if you think about it, lots of great ideas were born out of creativity. Creativity allows us to be original and come up with some pretty amazing things — which is why organisations and institutions alike have been trying to encourage creativity in their people.
If you’ve ever struggled with being creative, or often run into creative blocks,here are five easy-to-follow steps to get those creative juices flowing.
Learn from Others
Learning from others is one great way to improve and boost your creativity. You can do so by drawing inspiration from prominent creative professionals, such as Steve Jobs.
Read up on their experiences and see what you can adapt to your daily life. For example, Jobs once took a calligraphy class when he learnt about different typefaces. Though the course had little practical application to his life at that point of time, the knowledge acquired came in handy when Apple was designing their first Macintosh computer.
You can even hang around creative individuals within your own circle of friends, observe their habits or simply bounce ideas off each other.
Consider investing in books such as The Creative Habit - Learn it and Use it For Life by Twyla Tharp to discover ways to harness your creative potential.
Indulge in Creative Experiences
The really fun part about this is that it can literally be anything that requires creativity. Getting out and doing something creative not only boosts creativity but serves as an excellent stress reliever as well.
Creative experiences can include things like photography, dance, calligraphy, painting and art jamming.
Spend a weekend afternoon roaming around Singapore with a camera. You never know what hidden gems you might uncover as you explore the little nooks and crannies of our concrete jungle. Explore taking photos from different angles; capture people, structures, the essence of our bustling city.
If photography isn’t quite your cup of tea, grab a friend and sign up for a Kpop dance class at a dance studio near you. Don’t be afraid to look silly; it’s all about feeling the beat and controlling the rhythm.
Alternatively, try your hand at art jamming. You never know how good you might be at putting your imagination on canvas!
Have a Brainstorming Session
An effective way to unleash your inner creativity is to brainstorm for fresh ideas. We’ll get you started by sharing a few fun ways to pollinate your ideas.
List Down Terrible Ideas
The first exercise requires you to jot down a list of really terrible ideas. After you’re done listing some of the worst ideas you can think of (e.g. like 10- inch heels or laksa ice cream), try to identify the best feature of each terrible idea.
Note: We’ve actually tried this, and it sure puts your brain to the test!
Problem-Solve with the Six Thinking Hats Model
Another cool brainstorming technique that’s worth attempting is to make a list of all the problems you want to solve. The problems can range in severity — from world hunger to everyday things like waking up on time for work.
To help you think of creative solutions for these problems, we’d like to introduce the Six Thinking Hats to ideation tool. The Six Thinking Hats tool includes six different styles of thought.
When you put on the “white hat”, you focus on data and trends. This is more analytical and logical — look for gaps in your knowledge and try to fill them.
Change into the red hat and you’ll be applying an intuitive/emotional approach to problems, relying on your gut instincts. Understand the emotional aspect of the problem.
Wearing the black hat involves looking at negative outcomes, and considering reasons why things might not work. On the contrary, the yellow hat requires you to see the positive side of your decision.
The most important hat to wear when you’re trying to brainstorm creatively is the green hat. The green hat focuses on creativity and encourages the uninhibited thought process with limited criticism of ideas.
And lastly, the blue hat represents control and discernment —to know when to apply the different styles of thought.
If all of this sounds too complex for your liking, why not try inventing something? Take a look around you and think of a problem you could solve with your invention. As this is just a brainstorming exercise, your ideas don’thave to be realistic - let your imagination run wild.
Spend Time Outdoors
Waiting to be struck by a muse?
As you step away from the chaos of the city and enter a nature’s realm of tranquillity, your creative juices start flowing again.
Working in the same environment daily can indeed hamper your ability to think creatively. Ironically, being surrounded by four walls sometimes simply does not allow room for creativity.
This is why spending time outdoors can be a good way to free the mind of its limitations and inhibitions. It can be hard for a muse to strike us when we’re stuck indoors.
Additionally, interacting with nature can help you overcome creative blocks and even boost your memory.
Try to make some time for hiking this week —fresh air and lush greenery may just inspire your next big idea.
Embark on a Personal Passion Project
Start a creative project that you can do in your free time.
When you set out on a passion project, it’s important to think about what you hope to gain from it. Despite it being non-work related, you should still set some ground rules, like how much time you’ll dedicate to it, the duration of the project and what makes it successful (e.g if you promise to practise calligraphy for 365 days, completing all 365 days might be a measure of success).
If you’re a designer by profession, you could start making it a point to design ONE thing (outside of work ) every week. It could even be something like redesigning the logo of your coffee house —anything to keep the passion alive.
If you’re a copywriter, try keeping a personal blog where you can pour your linguistic prowess into prose weekly.
A simple passion project could even be bullet-journaling, calligraphy or colouring - anything that taps on your right brain works!
Don’t have enough time to practise these five steps before your next branding project?
We can put you in touch with a chronically creative team to help save the day. Drop in for a chat at https://www.the-outsiders.co/.