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Practical Ways to Find Creativity When You're Feeling Uncreative

How to feel more creative

  • Take a break. Give your brain some space to think of other things.
  • Expand your definition of creativity. You’re probably conditioned to look for it in specific places. Break that mold.
  • Limit yourself. Fewer tools and less time, counterintuitively, force you to be more creative.

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Practical Ways to Find Creativity When You're Feeling Uncreative

Practical Ways to Find Creativity When You're Feeling Uncreative

https://www.riskology.co/practical-creativity/

riskology.co

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Key Ideas

Creativity expectations

Our expectations of how creativity should look like block us. Creative inspiration is all around us, but we don’t see it because we've grown up being taught to look for it in specific places.

How to feel more creative

  • Take a break. Give your brain some space to think of other things.
  • Expand your definition of creativity. You’re probably conditioned to look for it in specific places. Break that mold.
  • Limit yourself. Fewer tools and less time, counterintuitively, force you to be more creative.

SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

Creative Thinking Defined

Creativity is not just reserved for artistic tasks such as writing, painting or composing music.

Creative thinking is the ability to consider something – a conflict between empl...

Top Creative Thinking Skills
  • Analytical. Before thinking creatively about something, you first have to be able to understand it.
  • Open-Minded. Setting aside any assumptions or biases you may have, and look at things in a completely new way.
  • Problem Solving. Using your creativity to solve important issues.
  • Organization. Being able to structure a plan of action with clear goals and deadlines is vital.
  • Communication. Strong written and oral communication skills to communicate your solutions effectively.
Examples of Creative Thinking
Generally, anything that involves an “aha” moment is considered creative.
  • Artistic Creativity. You don't have to be an artist for your work to have an artistic element. For example: Composing a new fundraising script for volunteers or devising a lesson plan that will engage students.
  • Creative Problem-Solving. For example: Coming up with new procedures to improve quality or suggesting a way to improve customer service.
  • Creativity in STEM. For example: Constructing a research model to test a hypothesis or devising a computer program to automate a billing process.
Restrict yourself

Research suggests placing self-imposed limitations can boost creativity. 

It forces your brain to come up with creative solutions to finish a project around the parameters you’ve ...

Re-conceptualize the problem

Instead of thinking of a cut-and-dry end goal to certain situations, creative people sit back and examine the problem in different ways before beginning to work.

If you find yourself stagnating by focusing on generic problems, try to re-conceptualize the problem by focusing on a more meaningful angle.

For example: Instead of thinking “What would be something cool to paint?” rather ask, “What sort of painting evokes the feeling of loneliness that we all encounter after a break-up?”

Create psychological distance

Creating “psychological” distance may be useful for breaking through a creative block.

Try to imagine your creative task as being disconnected and distant from your current position/location - this may make the problem more accessible and can encourage higher level thinking.

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Challenge your preconceived notions

Be willing to accept the inherent risk in not following what seemed to be the obvious route. Such risk tolerance is another important part of challenging what you think you know and cul...

Plan Creativity-Stoking Sessions

Create vision boards–collages of words and images–related to business challenges or goals. Do mind-mapping or doodling exercises. 

You will begin making remote associations. It can be hard and it’s a stretch, but it opens up new ways of thinking.

Change up routine regularly

When you’re facing down something unexpected, you’re taken out of your everyday experience and all of the preconceived notions that go with it.

Do something new every day to capture the same openness. Take a new route home and carefully observe what’s there. Look for beauty, interesting architecture, or exceptional gardens. Remember how it feels to be truly observant and unsure of what to expect.

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Focus on what matters
  • Write down the end goal.
  • Divide the goal into specific actions you need to take to get there. Think in terms of systems: focussed, routine actions that you can do daily.
  • List a...
Steve Jobs
Steve Jobs

“Deciding what not to do is as important as deciding what to do. It’s true for companies, and it’s true for products."

Seek Simplicity
  • Find out if the problem really exists, and why. This will open a path to alternative ways of solving it.
  • Some problems, which seem complex, often have simple solutions.
  • What is the surest thing in that complex problem? That becomes your First Principle, your starting point.
  • List out the possible solutions
  • Focus on one good solution while removing the rest.

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The right side of the brain
The right side of the brain

Creativity isn’t the preserve of one side of the brain, and it isn’t a talent confined to people with a special kind of brain. If you’re human and you’ve got a brain, you’re capabl...

The “Eureka!” moment

This myth encourages the belief that creativity is a passive process. It suggests you have to wait and hope that you’ll make a breakthrough.

That Eureka moment is actually the last step in a long, involved process and not the only step. For this to happen, your unconscious mind needs material to work with. You have to put in the hard work of studying and mastering your field and exposing yourself to different perspectives.

The lone, eccentric geniuses

In reality, creativity is a team sport.

The lone genius myth is a stereotype and it’s unhelpful because it suggests the route to innovation is to cut oneself off from colleagues and collaboration. You need a modest amount of intelligence to be creative, but extremely high IQ is neither sufficient nor necessary for being an innovator.

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Concept creep

... or moving the goalposts, it happens when problems never seem to go away because people keep changing how they define them.

This can be a frustrating experience, because you don't r...

Relative comparisons

These comparisons often use less energy than absolute measurements. For e.g, it’s easier to remember which of your cousins is the tallest than exactly how tall each cousin is. Human brains have likely evolved to use relative comparisons in many situations because they often provide enough information to safely navigate our environments, with very little effort.

Read 1 book per week

Ordinary people seek entertainment. Extraordinary people seek education and learning.

Taking even 15–30 minutes every day (especially during the morning) to read uplifting and instruct...

Do something that terrifies you

But you don’t have to constantly be battling your fears. You only need to be courageous for 20 seconds at a time.

If you courageously confront fear for 20 seconds every single day, before you know it, you’ll be in a different socio-economic and social situation.

“A person’s success in life can usually be measured by the number of uncomfortable conversations he or she is willing to have.”

“A person’s success in life can usually be measured by the number of uncomfortable conversations he or she is willing to have.”

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4 Stages of Creative Control
  • Preparation: you’re learning everything you can about the problem.
  • Incubation: you’re allowing your unconscious mind to work on the problem.
  • Illumination: ...
Creative work categories
  • Prioritize: The clearer your priorities, the more focused you can be on the task at hand. 
  • Generate: Build a creative habit. Make a daily deliverable, whether it’s 100-words a day, a 30-second song etc...
  • Explore: When you Explore, you collect the raw materials for the insights you’ll have when you Generate.
  • Research: To solve a creative problem, you have to learn whatever you can about that problem.
  • Recharge: When you rest, you allow your unconscious mind to work on your creative problems.
  • Polish: A great idea won’t work if you don’t execute it well.
  • Administrate: make it all work, so you can keep doing what you’re doing.
Becoming a perpetual creativity machine
  1. Build a tiny creative habit: Find the time of day with the best creative energy and make your daily deliverable so small, you can’t stand to fail.
  2. Take time to Prioritize: Once you’ve established a habit, dedicate an hour a week to a “weekly review”.
  3. Rest with a purpose: Establish times during your day and your week when you’ll do something that Recharges you.
Ask For Help

No one is truly successful alone and you can’t get different results by doing the same things. By asking for help, you benefit from someone else’s perspective and give them the opportun...

Change The Environment

Often, our blocks result from us getting stuck in an unwanted pattern of thought. It becomes a routine and eventually an unwanted rut.

Changing your inner or outer environment disrupts our routines and can be incredibly effective at helping us broaden our perspective. Ultimately, it’ll help us see new solutions to old problems.

Change The Channel

Blocks arise when we focus on what we don’t want, instead of what we do want. 

A good way to remove the block is to spend some time doing something completely unrelated to the problem you are working on.

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