Creativity is not just the business of a handful of chosen people. Some simply express it more freely than others. Here are 10 ideas to bring your creativity to the next level.
By Marie Eve Gosemick, Creative Life associate
- Determine if you are introverted
Getting your creativity going is a different process if you are an introverted person compared to an extroverted person. A study by Peter O’Connor of the Queensland University of Technology has shown that introverts are more creative in a relaxed and quiet environment, while extroverts need fast paced team work.
“I need solitude for my writing; not “like a hermit” – that wouldn’t be enough –but like a dead man.”
~ Franz Kafka
- Set deadlines for yourself
The most recognized creative people in the United States told Fast Company that deadlines allow them to overcome blockages and to take action, even though the neuroscientist John Kounios warns that deadlines could also create anxiety.
- Limit your use of technology
Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic of the Columbia University, told The Guardian that the web makes us lazy, because the ways to express our opinions are predetermined (for example the “Like” button and the emoji’s). Be curious but know when to disconnect.
- Get up regularly
When we are sitting, our whole body begins to slow down – even our brain. Once you are standing, make an effort to stand straight. In their study that was published in Psychological Science, researchers Dana Carney, Andy Yap and Amy Cuddy showed that an open posture increases the appetite for risk taking, which is essential to creating.
- Go for a walk
Marily Oppezzo and Daniel L. Schwartz, researchers at Stanford University, proved that walking a couple of minutes is enough for creative thinking, without having to run or even go outside.
“All truly great thoughts are conceived by walking.”
~ Friedrich Nietzsche
- Vary your routine
In Creativity, Inc., Ed Catmull, president of Pixar, specifies that you have to be comfortable with changes, because ideas are not predictable. Develop your ability to adapt by frequently changing your routine, for example where you eat or your way to work.
- Take advantage of your negative emotions
Malinda J. McPherson of Harvard University led a study on the improvisation of jazz musicians, which showed that sadness stimulates the brain’s reward system. The creative impulse generated brings you greater satisfaction.
- Favor the color blue over red
A study published by researchers from British Columbia unveiled that blue encourages the spirit to explore and new ideas, while red rather calls for caution by association with emergency vehicles and road signs.
- Plan to take breaks
According to renowned psychologists Maria Konnikova and Adam Grant, the best way to create is to take a break. You will have more distance and time for testing. After all, being creative is not a linear process.
- Project yourself elsewhere
Temporal and spatial distance stimulates your ability to conceive creative solutions, according to a study published in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology. To exceed the limits of your mind, imagine yourself in the year 2050 or in Dubai.
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