Seven Steps to Increase Your Creativity
I suppose everyone has their own idea as to success in life. To me, success in
life is about being productive and creative. Being productive is a simple manner
of managing your time and energy, but how do you become creative? You don't have
to be an artist or an inventor to be creative, anyone can use the seven steps
described in this article to become more creative.
1. Get adequate sleep.
Many studies have shown that sleep loss significantly impairs mental
performance. If you want to increase your creativity, you must let your brain
enter a stage of deep sleep known as REM sleep. REM stands for "rapid eye
movement". During REM your eyes dart around rapidly as you dream.
Dreams are a byproduct of your brain as it tries to organize itself. It tries
to make sense of the patterns it collected during the previous day as they relate
to patterns it has stored over your lifetime. During sleep your brain is
actually reorganizing and growing new brain cells and connections called
dendrites that it needs to store the new information it has learned.
If you don't get adequate sleep to let your mind enter REM, it can't reconcile
recently collected sensory and thought patterns. You can't learn and remember
new information as easily as you should, you can't do well on exams in school,
and you can't be creative.
2. Take a break and go for a walk.
Sometimes when you're sitting at your desk, or facing a task at hand, you put
too much pressure on your brain to come up with a solution to a problem. Your
brain is so focused on the stress of needing to come up a solution to the problem
that it can't focus on creating an idea. You face a creativity mind block.
It may seem like a contradiction, but you might be able to come up with a
creative solution if you stop thinking about the problem. Sometimes your mind
gets caught in a track of thought that it can't get out of. Get away from the
problem, relax, take a walk and think about something else.
Surprisingly your subconscious mind will still be working on the problem in the
background. Except now it's not under the brain blocking stress that it was
before. Your brain will leave the nonproductive track it was caught in, and to
your surprise, a creative solution may come bubbling forth.
3. Capture ideas when they pop into your mind.
Your subconscious brain is constantly working in the background, generating
random thoughts, ideas and concepts. Most of these ideas don't make sense in the
light of reality and the brain quickly forgets them before you even know they
existed. But every once and a while the subconscious mind judges one of these
ideas to be compatible with reality and so lets the idea bubble up to your conscious mind.
Unfortunately these ideas can popup at inconvenient times, like when you're
waiting in line, when you're sitting on the toilet, or in the middle of the
night when you're in bed. Once your subconscious brain informs your conscious
mind of an idea, it quickly forgets it. If you don't capture the idea the moment
it comes forth, you will most likely forget it. In fact you will probably forget
that you even had an idea.