Creativity is a skill we all want to be good at. After all, we all have an inner artist, longing to get out! People might consider creativity to be an inherent quality that only some blessed souls possess. You might think of it as a magic spell that only creative marketers, copywriters, artists, or designers use to make us spellbound.
But, science proves that it is a skill that, like any other skill, can be learned and perfected through practice. When figuring out ‘How to be creative’ there’s a lot to be learned and practiced.
So, to help your creative juices flow out, many psychologists believe that creativity can be learned by adopting certain habits. Our brain muscles just require specific exercises, which allow the right part to dominate it, i.e., the creative part of the brain. Many areas can be tweaked a bit to improve your overall creativity.
Engaging in creative exercises and making lifestyle changes, along with incorporating these ways in your life, can prove to be a creativity generator. Read on for 11 ways you can adopt to build your creative muscle, but let’s have a look at the five traits of a creative person.
What are the five traits of a creative person?
We often cross paths with people who are the ‘creative types’ leaving us with inspirational and motivational feelings. Whether it be designers, artists, painters, or actors, their awe-inspiring work and sense of creativity leave a hallmark on our memory. So, what makes a person creative? You might have thought of this question as well.
To begin with, creative people are dreamers. They love imagining, but it does not mean living in the clouds. Also, they dream and find ways to fulfill those dreams. They are curious and are continuously learning new things and skills. Creative people do not settle for anything less than what they deserve.
They have high standards and believe in their worth. Creative people are not afraid to experiment. They like taking risks and trying new things. After all, we all got to live once, and a life without risk is no life at all.
10 ways you can teach yourself to be creative
1- Never stop acting like a kid
Do you lack Imagination? Think like a child. What I love the most about children is that their imagination knows no boundaries. Children are naturally creative just because they think beyond the realm of possibilities and impossibilities. For them, everything is possible and makes perfect sense.
They are willing to go in any direction when it comes to creativity. Channel the inner child within yourself. Look beyond your boundaries. Take a different path to do the same work and enjoy the feelings of newness. Most of all, have fun while doing work just like a child does.
They might be building the same blocks for the hundredth time, but their enthusiasm never fades away. A child thinks of everything as an adventure, and you should practice the same thinking. Life is not meant to pay the bills and die eventually. Rather it is intended to be cherished and nurtured.
2- Connect with creative people
Often people ask me, ‘How do you practice creativity?’ Well, creativity is already being practiced when you surround yourself with creative people. You come across creative people at every step in life. Surrounding yourself with creative people gives a new perspective to your ideas. As the saying goes,
‘Two are better than one because it adds to the value of your idea and polishes it further. When you work alone, you are more likely to go blank after a particular time, staring blindly at your project. Your mind might not be able to produce any innovative ideas further. That is why surrounding yourself with creative people is encouraged.
It not only boosts your creativity but is right for your career as well. An innovative company keeps you motivated and enthusiastic. Moreover, a healthy dose of competition might be just what you were in search of to channel your creative spirit.
3- Doodle in your spare time
Keep a doodle journal with you ALL THE TIME! I have no other way to emphasize it. But you get the point, right? Well, doodling is considered a childish activity, but trust me, no other tip is as beneficial as this one tip. Once you start doodling, you’ll feel more creative and productive when you doodle your attention span increases as it never lets you zone out.
Not only in art, but to be creative in every aspect of your life, you can try doodling. Whenever you feel zoning out or even bored at a conference call, just take out your doodle journal and start. You’ll feel more focused once you start practicing it.
It is such a powerful creative exercise. Just drawing lines or filling the margins of your page lights up new networks in your brain. So, if you are thinking, ‘What creative things can I do just grab a pen and paper or buy a journal and you’ll never get bored again.
4- Be creative by traveling to other places
Creativity comes when your mind has enough ideas fed to it—just the way you reap what you sow. Similarly, your mind is as creative as what it experiences. The daily grind of chores at home or the same monotonous routine at the office can exhaust your artistic abilities to a great extent. Therefore it is recommended to go on a vacation every once in a while. New places and new experiences serve as a creativity booster.
You might have noticed one thing common in all the creative people i.e. they are avid travelers. Not just going to different places but engaging with different cultures and learning different languages sharpens your creative skills. By engaging with new people in new areas, you learn new ways of thinking that you can later apply to modify your ideas. So, you sure don’t want to miss this one, right?
5- How to be creative- Brainstorm while you exercise
Exercise is a great way to get you in creative mode. Exercising just for 30-40 minutes daily will improve your mood a lot and, at the same time, make you more creative. It reduces stress and improves cognitive function as well. Numerous types of research carried out time and again are enough to provide you with the necessary motivation to start exercising today.
Exercise has been linked to creative thinking as most of your brain is devoted to movement than to language. Therefore daily exercising is imperative if you want to improve your overall health and creative thinking. Have you ever thought about why the most innovative ideas occur to you while you are doing the most mundane tasks?
That’s because it’s time we allow our brains to ‘think outside the box.’ So, to be creative, you need to start exercising today, do yoga, and go for a run or even dance.
6- Be perfectly imperfect to be creative in design
You don’t need to be perfect at a skill to do it. If you don’t sound like Madonna or paint like Leonardo Di Vinci, it is perfectly okay because it’s you. It requires time and effort to master a skill. But if you stop at the first step, you are good for nothing. The first time you try a new skill, it is not going to make any sense at all.
First experiences are meant to be imperfect. Let me tell you about my tale. I never thought I would be able to write, but guess what today I am here sharing my story with you all. If I had stopped back then at the sight of my first sentence, it would never have been possible to reach this point. So, give yourself permission to experiment and be audacious about what you are going to create.
7- How to be creative in life – Let your brain rest
There are no two ways about it. Downtime is as vital for your brain as sleep is for your body. There is evident research to prove that short naps taken more often are more likely to have a positive impact on you. Frequent breaks incorporated in your workday increase your productivity and your creativity skyrockets.
After a nap, you become more energized and more passionate about your work. Any time spent away from your project gives your brain more room to process the information and be more creative. Doing one thing after another exhausts your mind entirely, blocking away all sorts of creativity.
Practically it means thoroughly enjoying one thing at a time. Just as you need some alone time while being in a relationship similarly, your brain needs some downtime as well. So shut off all the activities from time to time and let it wander.
8- Broaden your knowledge to be creative
Creativity is something that only blooms and glooms when you provide the necessary stimulus to your brain. By broadening your knowledge by acquiring new skills and learning new techniques, you can ignite a spark in your inner creative soul. Develop your expertise. Join a creative course and be part of a community.
Inspire and learn from what others produce while marching forward at your own pace. Be open to new experiences, and never be afraid of risks and failures. Creative people are always on their toes to broaden their horizons. The thought of failure never limits them to achieve their goals. Never let your inner child die. Act childlike once in a while.
Use play to bring out your inner creative self. Use art supplies to stimulate your imagination. To be creative, share with others what you learned yourself as you are more likely to remember what you share with others.
9- Embrace boredom if you want to practice creativity
What if I tell you that Boredom can spark creativity? Amazed right? That was precisely my reaction when I came across this research explaining the link between boredom and creativity. I often think, ‘How can I force myself to be creative and the answer is pretty clear now. I need to embrace boredom to be the best version of my creative self. In this digital age, where staving off boredom is just a click away, it’s better not to.
Boredom is a meaningful experience if you make the right use of it. It is the fuel to the flames of creativity as a restless mind hunger for stimulation. While bored, your brain moves into a daydreaming state. As it is not satisfied with its present condition, it yearns for change. So, when you are bored, you are seeking. You are engaged, and who knows you might get your ‘whoa moment.’
Before reading this, I bet you only wished for being as creative as your friend running a sketching business on Instagram or a neighbor next door smashing the web with his writings. But now you can work on this skill and refine it with practice and patience. Everyone is creative, and you don’t need to act like a crazy, fanatic person to be called one. Even the most gifted and visionary people need to practice creativity. So, stop wandering ‘I lack imagination and start being creative by acting on these tips to bring out your inner creative self.