I was going to start out this post by satirizing the popular image of “creative” people. You know, dressing in dark colors (to reflect the solemnity of our art), eschewing the shortsightedness of the masses (in favor of trendy eyewear), worshiping at the temple of higher thinking and individuality, etc. But I just realized I’m wearing all black today with these ultra cool, plastic frames, bowed over the keyboard of my sleek, silvery machine, so let’s skip to the next part.
Creativity is not an accessory. And it’s not a supernatural gift bequeathed to the few. Creativity is simply, as John Cleese once said, “a way of operating.” We choose to be creative whenever we make space in our schedules to invite the unknown in.
So make some space, shake up your routine, and check out this toolkit of resources for living more creatively.
3. Learn a new word. Foreign language teaches the brain to make new, creative connections.
4. Make peace with clutter. A recent study suggests it’ll free you up to think differently.
6. Watch the masters. Study the career of another creative person.
7. Do less work. Research says we’re too busy to be creative.
8. Do a lot of work. Ira Glass on storytelling and sticking with it.
9. Eat out at lunch. A midday change of scenery can pull you out of a creative funk.
10. Take in nature. Even just looking at photos of landscapes can boost brain activity.
11. Plan a trip. Vacations enhance our perspective and refresh our creative resources.
12. Read a little each day. A daily poem is like a little imagination pick-me-up.
13. Do what you’ve never done before. Paula Scher on exploringuncharted territory.
Now go forth, be creative, and tell us about it.