1. Open Your MindHave one new experience every day; no matter how small. New experiences stimulate the brain and help you make new and original connections; critical for boosting breakthroughs. Attend new forms of entertainment, read books or magazines you’ve never read before, take a class in a subject you know nothing about, listen to music you profess to hate, go somewhere really different on your next vacation, talk to people you normally don’t have a chance to meet. New experiences become the raw material for new ideas. The cross-pollination of diverse ideas is a primary stimulator for creativity.
2. Diversify Involve others in your problem-solving efforts, who bring a different perspective or cultural experience than yours. In addition to picking the brains of experts and knowledgeable colleagues, talk to people who are unfamiliar about the issue. By using this approach, you’ll be asked “dumb questions” that can often help you question assumptions, and see your challenge from a different angle with fresh eyes and a more open mind.
3. Mental FlossTake time to clean out your “mental plaque” by flossing daily; unplugging and taking time out to relax. Studies have shown that our intelligence and creative problem-solving abilities nosedive about 25% when we’re stressed out. Stress, exhaustion, boredom and even pain can block our pathways to creativity.Creativity often seeps in through the cracks. By allowing yourself time to quiet your mind each day, the solutions beneath the surface will bubble up and you’ll be available to catch them. Twenty minutes of uninterrupted incubation time daily will produce a plethora of ideas.
4. Stop Looking For the Right AnswerLook for many right answers. Multiple solution thinking can help you strengthen your creative muscle, while generating more ideas, which always leads to better ideas. In gold mining, it takes nearly 200,000 ounces of ore to produce just one ounce of gold. It’s no different with ideas. Mine with perseverance and patience, and you’ll be richly rewarded.
5. Discover Your Creative RhythmEveryone has creative performance peaks daily. Some of us get our best ideas during our morning commute; others wake up in the middle of the night with thunderbolts of genius. Unfortunately, most of us don’t honor this fertile idea-harvesting time. Start paying attention to when you get your best ideas. If you aren’t sure, keep a log for a week and jot down what time of day you are most mentally productive.It’s been said that the difference between creative geniuses and “normal” people is that creative have more effective capturing techniques. They pay attention to their best ideas and record them before they have a chance to slip away. Once you discover your creative rhythm, make sure you have a tape recorder, laptop, or pad and pencil nearby to capture your ideas.
6. Health Makes WealthA wealth of new ideas can be yours if you exercise regularly and eat well. Regular exercise not only benefits your body, it boosts brain performance as well.
By Prashanthi Reddy on American Chronicle
Blogged with Flock
Keyword: Daniel Montano, Dan Montano, user experience design, information architect