Being stuck at home for weeks at a time can take a toll on so much, but what's first to go? Creativity. Maybe it happens at a certain time of day, or when there’s a big deadline coming up, but we’ve all been there: you’re just out of ideas and you just don't wanna. When this happens, how do you keep the creative juices flowing?
There is a fundamental difference between being efficient and creating new ideas. Most of the productivity tips we use (smart goals, checklists, etc.) are designed around efficiency. While helpful for getting things done, they are less helpful for creating new ideas. We only have a certain amount of decisions our brain allows us throughout the day and being creative can sometimes take last place. For creativity, a structured break will often get the juices flowing. Here are five ways to get your creative juices flowing, regardless of your work.
1. Start a free-flow sketch book: Not the one you can buy in the store with clean, plain pages. Instead feel free to use unusual materials like rug and wallpaper scraps or even spices/glue in the sketch book. It just might inspire some new ideas.
2. Go for a walk: Sometimes the best thing to do is walk away. Einstein, if hearing a new idea, would go for a walk to turn it over and let it sink in. Going for a walk gives your mind and body something to do while the subconscious continues to explore the idea.
3. Check out something different: A lot of creativity involves breaking a pattern. Try virtually visiting stores through their website, Pinterest, Behance, Dribbble, Tumblr etc. Find new artists or photographers online and pull pieces of their process into a mental collage of sorts to get creative ideas.
4. Meditate: We are constantly doing, consuming information, looking at screens. Life goes quick, and one of the most important things to do is simply to stop and do nothing. You don’t need a yoga mat, a candle, and a fancy place to meditate. A few quick breaths helps reset your thinking.
5. Explain it to a five year old: As Charles Mingus said, “anyone can take something simple and make it complex. Making the complex simple, that’s creativity.” Simplification is about boiling a message to its core. People tend to over complicate things and use excess language. Instead, pretend you’re explaining something to a five year old.
6. Draw: Another method to activate different parts of the mind is drawing. Put on a good song and put the idea into an image. See what happens. It might activate something new or give you a fresh perspective when you return to the task.
There are plenty of ways to get things flowing. Reach out and tell us what you do to keep going in your creative work environment. We’d love to hear from you.