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Being creative is not easy and it is not a switch you can just turn on and off. However there are certain practices that can help you focus on maintaining your creativity.
We are not talking about complicated tasks; instead they are tasks you can do in as little as five minutes of your day which can help you create and develop new ideas. These tips will allow you to enter a creative mood and as you practice they will get easier by the day and soon can be seamlessly integrated as part of your daily routine.
On the surface it doesn’t seem like the two of them can go together: creativity and routine. But contrary to popular belief, they do have a correlation: if you have an organized mind you’ll be more creative because you will have less to think and worry about.
Try to organize your day to day tasks in a manner that allows you to be more productive. The more productive you are, the more time you have and the less you have to worry about and will gain a higher level of concentration to stay creative.
Some of the most creative people were incredibly organized and meticulous. Having a cluttered space leaves its mark by creating a cluttered mind, and cluttered minds are not creative.
What can you do?
Try to divide your day into increments such as by the hour and assign time frames to your tasks. Don’t jump to work the minute you wake up, assign some time for each task (including time for relaxation) and stick as closely as you can to those time frames.
Music can calm the mind (remember the term: “It’s music to my ears”?). Listening to instrumental music helps to allow your mind to enter a creative state. Ideally, during your creative process try listening to soft music that is moderate-low volume.
How does Music help with creativity? It allows your brain to relax and helps to improve your mood, and a positive mood equals a creative mood. It’s a great way to fight stressful tasks and concentrate on tight deadlines. Instead of repeatedly telling your brain: I’m stressed, you’ll be sending relaxing tones which will trigger your brain to remain calm and focused.
It is not recommended to listen to music in a language that you are not familiar with or that you are in the process of learning, because your mind will then divide and you won’t be able to focus 100% on the creative process.
A few types of music to consider are Bossa Nova, Jazz and Classical Music.
Colors stimulate senses as well as your mind. You can take advantage of color by using them in various ways. Use post it notes, markers, pens and colored office utensils. Each color can trigger a different mood; some excite and some give a sense of calm, so use them to make your work area a creative space.
You can also include colors in your work. You may be bound by your branding colors or other guidelines. Adding some of the approved colors to your report could change the way you feel about it completely. This will help stimulate the thought processes that can improve your creativity.
You may have always done things your own way, but that does not mean there are not other ways of doing them.
Re-evaluate what you are doing daily that you feel can be improved on. Do you feel productive at every task you do? For example if you usually take a specific route to work, try another for a couple of days. If you always eat in the restaurant down the street, try that little new place around the corner. Routine helps us stay productive, but sometimes just by doing a slight change gives you a different perspective and can trigger you to change your outlook and inspire creativity.
Find out what new tools on the market that can help you in your day to day activities. There are productivity tools to help you save time managing projects and tasks, there are Google Docs and Dropbox for storing your content and there is tools such as Visme, a viable alternative over traditional software such as PowerPoint.
Using good tools will allow you to be faster and more creative.
Remember to also challenge yourself. Try different tools and avenues and yet maintain a routine that helps you to stay organized and productive. Get out of your comfort zone, and give it a try.
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