BY MARIA WAIDA
It’s hard to feel very creative when you’ve got deadlines to meet and teams to engage. From anxiety to burnout to overwhelm it may feel like you’re doing battle with the giants of anti productivity. Although there are many well known studies surrounding the long term practices that increase creativity, you might be interested to learn more about the lesser known solutions that you can accomplish right from your desk. Each one offers a different creativity boosting benefit and can be accomplished in as little as ten minutes!
- Daydreaming — The journal of Psychological Science published a study citing daydreaming as powerful tool for both creative problem-solving and working memory. It doesn’t matter what you think about as long as it’s a subject that is relaxing, enjoyable, and completely unrelated to the task at hand.
- Do something fun — It’s a great excuse to bust out the Candy Crush again. Doing something fun also functions in the same way as the daydreaming philosophy. By distracting your brain with an unrelated task you give your mind time to catch up and reinvigorate itself.
- Collaborate with the most creative person you know — Shoot them a quick email asking for their opinion on the matter. Hearing an outside perspective will often inspire you to think about the big picture as well.
- Boost your own confidence — There’s a famous study in which college students were asked to smell cinnamon after being told it would then increase their creativity. Their test results were then compared to a group that sniffed cinnamon but were not told it would help them in any way. The group that believed they had enhanced creativity did substantially better. So compliment yourself, practice positive self talk, or watch something inspirational to get your creative mojo back.
- Limit access to your time and attention — It takes an average of 23 minutes to get back on task once you’ve been interrupted by other work tasks, emails, or chatty colleagues. Turn off your phone, close any extra screens, and put up a sign letting your coworkers know you will not be making small talk for a little while.
- Meditate — It’s impossible to deny the many benefits of meditation and boosting creativity is certainly one of them, mainly because decreased stress levels allow you to think in more abstract ways.
- Engage in a hobby — This helps in two ways. First, you get the instant boost of confidence from completing a small, low stakes task. Second, you’ll come back to your work project with the ability to be flexible in your approach or reveal previously overlooked clues into how to move forward.
- Play happy music — Anything upbeat or inspirational will do.
- Practice posture resetting — Slouching results in less space for your lungs to expand, which means you’re taking in less oxygen. The less oxygen you have, the harder your brain has to work. Give your mind a rest by adopting a relaxed yet aligned posture.
For those interested in boosting their creativity and enhancing their daily productivity, be sure to check out Taskworld’s uniquely inventive visual task boards for more ways to get inspired.
About the author
Maria is a freelance writer specializing in B2B SaaS. When she’s not crafting blog posts she can be found nerding out over DnD, exploring California’s beaches or on a one woman mission to find LA’s best ramen spot. www.SaaSyCopywriting.com