You may have found yourself saying, “I’m not creative,” or some derivative of it. Statements like this can be destructive to your psyche. This is not only because you should try to avoid negative self-talk for your esteem and confidence, but because we become what our brains tell us to be. Therefore, if you’re telling yourself that you aren’t this or aren’t that, you are essentially telling your brain that it isn’t within your grasp to achieve something. Instead of telling yourself that you aren’t creative, decide that you, in fact, are a creative genius. You simply need to practice ways to let that genius emerge.
1. Practice Mindfulness
Look everywhere for possible solutions and creative opportunities. Be aware of what’s around and practice observing it. This must be intentional to be effective. When you are mindful, you are forcing your brain to see what’s around you, to control your internal voice, both about yourself and those you encounter. It is this inner voice that regulates our perception of people and things. Quiet that voice and be open to experiencing people and situations with an unguarded mind.
2. Don’t stifle your own ideas
How often do you have to solve a problem or come up with a solution? It probably happens dozens to hundreds of times per week. Now consider how many potential solutions you dismiss without really reflecting on these ideas. Certainly some solutions have to come quickly and require immediate action. But for the ones that don’t, decide that you’re going to think of ten ideas to solve the problem. Don’t limit yourself. Come up with a number of solutions – even silly ones. Creative geniuses do this constantly.
3. Create something
Prod your creative genius by creating something. Even if you don’t think you’re Picasso or Shakespeare (after all, only two people in history actually were), craft something that is your own creation. Whether you believe that what you create is a work of art or destined for the trash can, during the process you are activating parts of your brain that are only active when you are creating.
Be curious about the world around you. This may sound obvious, but like the practice of mindfulness, it must be intentional. You probably take the same route each time you go to work, school, the grocery store, and other places you frequent. Change it. Make yourself experience a different environment. Notice new things and new parts of your brain will be activated.
5. Write it down
A common practice among creative geniuses is writing down ideas as they have them. Carry a notebook constantly and don’t let a brilliant thought become something you can’t recall later. You may not need to reference it immediately, but it’ll be there when you do.
6. Take a break when you need to
Many people think that the key to accomplishing something or creating something is “powering through,” when in actuality, that couldn’t be further from the truth. When your brain needs to rest, your thoughts will become fuzzy. You’ll feel drained. You may even be physically tired. Listen to your mind and body. Rest until you’re clear again.
7. Stick to it
Our first attempt at something is rarely our most successful. As you coax your creative genius to emerge, have a little patience. It’s sometimes a sad state when we have the patience of a saint with those around us, giving plenty of time and chances, but that we can’t do that with ourselves. Are you going to create a masterpiece on your first endeavor? Maybe, but it’s not likely. Instead, know that you (and your creation) are a work in progress. Your first attempt is a draft. Practice and commitment will ensure your success.
8. Act like a kid – play and have fun
Stress can smother creativity. Our brains can become so focused on task-oriented activities and to-do lists that we forget that we should be enjoying ourselves. Not only does having fun and being playful allow us to forget about our stresses for a little while, it actually helps us to increase our brain power and creative genius potential.