Creativity is in high demand. As Dan Pink predicted in one of his awesome books, companies are hiring more and more people for their creative genius. So how do you develop, hone, expand the creative genius YOU?
1. Talk to yourself
Engage that imagination in a dialogue. When you are out in the world, hearing and observing other people, you are experiencing hundreds of things that act as jumping-off points for your musings. Your imagination loves to daydream and explore ideas and scenarios. The more questions you ask it, the more problems you throw it’s way, the more fun it has and the more you flex your creative genius muscles.
– What would happen if I were that person? – What would that shirt look like if it was green? – Why is he carrying flowers? – Where are they all going?
Let your imagination play it out and see what you come up with!
Organized and disorganized play fuel your creativity. When we were children we played all the time, it’s how we learned about and explored the world. Get yourself back to that playful state. Find a way to make your work, chores, relationships more like play. For example, time yourself when you’re doing chores and set yourself a reward. The reward can be something simple, like a cup of coffee. If you like strong coffee, tell yourself your chores will give you ‘Strength’ points. The quicker and better you do them, the stronger you’ll make that cup of coffee. Not only will the chores fly by (And you’ll have a great cup of coffee!) but the gamification of the task will fuel and stretch your creative muscles. It’s a win win!
3. Use the Imaginary Eraser
My favorite drama therapy technique I learned in school was if you don’t like how something is going in your conversation or in your day, get out an imaginary eraser and ask the person you are talking with if they wouldn’t mind if you erased the scene and started over. More often than not they will laugh and say okay. Then, literally erase the air in front of you. Erase the whole dialogue and start it over. You have to start with the interaction before it went south. Like, “Hey Brenda, nice to see you, how’s it going? Hey I wanted to ask you, how is that project coming along? I ….” then you say the perfect thing that you wish you had said the first time, i.e. that perfectly kind compliment or understanding sentiment. Wish no more, SAY IT!
Apart from improving your day and your relationships, this stretches the imagination in two ways. Using the imaginary eraser is an exercise in and of itself, but apart from that, it takes imagination to realize your day/conversation has gone wrong, and come up with what you should have/could have said to avoid the problem.
4. Take a shower
I know a lot of people are already with me on this one! How many times has the PERFECT idea hit you while in the shower? Take your problems in there and let the steam work them out.
I have gotten to the point now that I take a Mr Sketch (Erasable!) marker in there, I write my problem or question on the shower wall and then I turn the water on. I set the intent that at the end of the shower I will know the answer.
We work so hard thinking about out problems, but it’s the passive state that is the best for problem solving. Let your brain do the work for you, no need to rush or fret, or push. The answer is already there, you just have to uncover it. Wash it away and see your true creative genius at work.
Ha that’s 4, TRICKED YOU!