While many people tend to think that creativity is inherent to some individuals and can’t be improved, the truth is quite the opposite: you can learn it, train it, and improve it.
Conversely to commonplace myths, having creative ideas does not rely on the “right genes” or high level of IQ. It’s merely the question of talent, either. Creativity is a skill that can be practiced like critical thinking or writing. It’s also a certain mindset that allows you to look at things from different perspectives.
Here are some ways in which you can boost your creative abilities and stop waiting too long for the “Eureka” moment. Don’t forget to practice them daily for at least 5 minutes and enjoy the results!
1. Create lists
For starters, try to come up with as many objects of the similar theme as possible. For example, enlist all the kitchen utensils you know or all the names of the cities that start with a P letter. Sometimes, you may come to the point, where you’ve emptied your mind out and think it’s unattainable to add a new thing to the list, but don’t give up! Take a deep breath and keep on thinking!
You can also think of all the possible applications of everyday and humdrum objects such as a newspaper, pencil, brick, mug. Push your imagination to the boundaries and learn how to look at one thing from various angles. You wouldn’t even know that the object from which you drink coffee could be at the same time a flower pot, candle holder, organizer or even a lamp!
2. Be a designer!
Ever wondered what it’s like to design something? This exercise can satisfy that curiosity. Choose one thing like a wallet or a phone and write down all their pros and cons. Then think of the ways they could be improved, add some extra Inspector-Gadget-like features and enjoy the freedom of conceiving the product from the scratch.
3. Word games
Playing with words can also spark your out-of-the-box self. For example, take at random one word from a dictionary and using the letters it contains try to come up with as many other words as possible. For instance, in “seasoning” there is: “sea”, “son”, “nose”, “gin”, “nag”, sing”, “song”…
You can also pick a pair of different objects or animals like a bird and a laptop or a car and a tree and merge these two things together into something new: “birdaptop” or “cartree”. You can draw what they would look like and think of the purpose they could serve.
4. Enjoy telling stories
Whether on a bus, train or at lunch break, allow yourself a bit of daydreaming and create stories. See that man over there? He may be an architect who designs fantastic glass buildings all over the world. He could also be a baker who wakes up at 5 am every morning to greet you with fresh and tasty loaves of bread. And over there, on the street, lies a handkerchief that belonged to a carefree painter. It was a gift from her friend to mark their long-standing relationship.
Don’t be afraid to let your imagination flow as storytelling makes you create original concepts and enhances abstract thinking.
Remember to stay open-minded
These exercises work best when you have the openness and willingness to grow. Don’t criticize yourself and explore your creativity. Besides, as an excellent storyteller, Piero Babudro, told us in an interview, always look for news ways of expressing yourself. It could be photography, writing or telling stories. Nothing stimulates inventiveness more than stepping out of your comfort zone and trying something new! Maybe you’ve always wanted to learn another foreign language, try water sports or start painting. Maybe the time is just right to do that! Good luck 🙂