Fire Up Your Creativity By Practicing These Five Simple and Effective Acts
Creativity isn’t about a new age, hipster, or beatnik look or lifestyle; you don’t have to don a new personality or even learn a fine art to be creative. Creativity is inherent in all of us, from the dentist that designs a perfect new smile to the house movers that know just where to put furniture to make a room beautiful.
Creativity is simply the expression of self through creation.
All you have to do to be creative is to create.
It could be fine art, but it could also be something that entertains people or something that simplifies life or makes it better or more interesting. It could be the creation of something that defines new ways of doing or thinking about things.
Making just a few simple changes to your outlook and adding a few simple practices can radically bring out your creative side.
1. Tell Stories
One thing that is unique to human ability is storytelling. A good story can bring out our emotions: anger, fear, laughter, love, and pride.
Every vocation in this world, whether it is professional or personal, is often enhanced through storytelling. A good storyteller advances fast in their chosen endeavours. A politician doesn’t rise quickly to the top through the policies and actions he actually makes, he rises fast through the stories in his speeches; by manipulating the heartstrings of his constituents. Maybe that is a negative example, but it’s an easily recognizable one.
For a positive example, let’s look at the architects of Dubai, the people that created the world’s tallest building as not just a feat of engineering, but as a work of art — Burj Khalifa. The creators of this magnificent and beautiful structure built not just a building, but told a story — creating a history with bricks, metal, and cement.
2.Leave Cynicism Behind
Cynicism may protect you from being naïve or from putting up with what you shouldn’t, but it is of no use in the creative process.
Imagine your idea as a simple dot. When new ideas come into your head about your project, whether they’re going to be used or not, that dot begins to grow; you begin to innovate. Don’t be a cynic during this process and don’t think about constraints. You don’t want to put jagged edges and holes onto your growing circle of ingenuity.
H.L. Menken defined a cynic as “a man who, when he smells flowers, looks around for a coffin.”
Yes, during the creative process you will find that some of your ideas will work well and some won’t, but think of it as organization — don’t judge the ideas that you leave behind harshly.
Even though they didn’t work, they helped you fully form your final idea.
3. Keep it simple
Complexity can destroy the very essence of your ideas.
Imagine that a florist is going to put together a bouquet of roses together. Now imagine that she uses 12 different colors of rose and then puts them in a vase covered in a complicated geometric pattern of various colors. It’s overkill.
Trust the idea to form itself with your help and don’t overthink it.
4. Observe the World Around You and the World At Large
We often get caught up in our own worlds and don’t notice and think about other aspects of life outside of our own interests.
The next time you’re roaming around a gallery or are viewing some other event or element of creativity, look closely at the other worlds you are being mentally and emotionally exposed to.
You could take it one step further and do this purposefully. Say you’re a scientist — explore a cathedral or other center of religion and consider the reverence people have for the unknown.
An economist might listen to a symphony and listen to the musical side of mathematics. Explore things that outside your usual sphere of influence. Keep delving into things you are unfamiliar with so that you round out your experiences and move in the direction of a holistic world view.
Staying abreast of what is happening in the world around us gives us connections to many ideas and the people that create them or create from them. This will only enhance your own creativity.
5. Reflect. Reflect. Reflect
Do you take a moment each day, consciously or unconsciously, to daydream or reflect?
Each of us has guiding principles and philosophies that shape our outlook on life. These principles and philosophies help us answer questions about our happiness and what excites us. If your principles or philosophies are unformed or are lacking, take steps to fill them out and help them take shape. It may happen that in the process of creation, you will have epiphanies and a new viewpoint will be born out of it.
Assessing the value of what we have done or what we are now doing gives us insight into how we or our creations help ourselves, help others, and help the world. Taking a moment out of our fast and busy lives to assess the value of our viewpoints and our creations is important.
Expanding your experiences will encourage you to embrace life and live it fully. These ten acts will not only enhance what you create, they will help you to create a life that resonates with vitality and inspiration.