8 Ways To Boost Your Creative Process
Being creative is something may people have to do in their daily jobs from designers to marketing and even in sales which is why we are sharing our eight ways to boost your creative process.
Of course the reason we need to share this information is that being creative can be hard, especially when you have to be creative. New ideas, creative pitches, various use of words, colors or designs don’t always sprout up when you need them, unfortunately. Sometimes you simply get stuck and need to find ways to get unstuck so you can get your task completed.
So let’s look at the various ways you can shake up your brain like a snow-globe that lets the ideas rain down.
Quick fixes to stimulate the noodle
- Change your space – Sometimes our work space can become a bit boring so why not rearrange things? Some people take this idea to the extreme and will repaint the walls and rearrange all the furniture. Similar ideas are to add pictures or prints you find inspiring to the walls, mix up your musical playlist and adding fresh flowers to your space. Flowers have been shown in studies to increase creativity. Moving lights around, opening curtains or even adding different scents, such as with scented candles, can do the trick as well.
- Use the ‘Why’ method – This sounds somewhat childish, but it is effective. Start asking yourself ‘why’ at every stage of the process and see what types of answers start popping out. Why are you making this? Why do they need it like this? Why is this a focal point or the item? Why, why, why!
- Try the ‘What if’ method – What if we looked at this from the users perspective? What if we rearranged the words in the slogan? What if we took this design and cut it into 4 pieces and shuffled them on the page? What if we looked at it via reflection off a mirror or upside down? There are lots of ways to incorporate the ‘What if’ method into whatever task you have to spark ideas.
- Go for a walk – Taking a walk outside with fresh air and sunshine is a great way to stimulate your brain. To start with, many offices suffer from a lack of fresh oxygen as the day goes on, instead recycling more carbon-dioxide into the air. Our brains need fresh oxygen to function at their best. Sunlight is also important to our mood. The combination of both while walking to stimulate blood flow can be just what you need to get your mind off the problem and your subconscious on it while you roam around.
- Try different mediums – If you are stuck trying to write a slogan, instead try and draw a picture to cover it and vice-versa. Switching mediums can engage different parts of the creative brain.
- Six Thinking Hats – This process, created by Edward De Bono, focuses on the ideas of wearing six different colored hats as you work through a process. It starts with putting on your White hat and stating that basic facts. Next you switch to the Red hat and state the emotions. Third is the Black hat where you state the negatives, although you need to not go overboard. The Yellow hat follows where you state the positive aspects. Then you move to the Green hat which is ideas and can include new alternatives. Finally you conclude with the Blue hat as you sum up what has been learned.
- Try a mind map – This is a diagram used to visually organize information. People call this technique white-boarding sometimes as you use a white board to work with as you start with a single concept at the center and map outwards with ideas, words and images related to the main concept. There are even apps you can use such as Popplet, iMindMap Mobile Pro, or Coggle. There are desktop apps as well such as Mindjet or XMind.
- Avoid assumptions – There are a few different techniques, one is called Osborn’s Checklist and another is the SCAMPER technique, which are used for concept development. What you do is create a list of questions about what you are doing to help trigger other thoughts and ideas. The general triggers are: adapt, combine, magnify, minify, modify, rearrange, reverse, swap, or substitute. Then you simply ask questions such as can we modify this to a new purpose? Can we modify the shape, sound or color of what we have? Can we reverse roles? These processes are used to get past the general assumptions we all get locked into from time to time given our own personal experiences.
Using these 8 ways to boost your creative process will definitely help the next time your brain locks-up when you really need ideas to be flowing and going.