Here are some practical ways to enhance your creativity today.
1 - Embrace Boredom
Legendary producer and drummer Questlove says, “The first thing I tell people is to embrace boredom, The temptation to pick up our phones and entertain ourselves at any silent moment is kind of eating up that time that we should be sitting in silence and letting creativity come to us.”
Practical tip: Leave your phone at home and go for a walk. You’ll be surprised at how quickly your mind will use creativity to entertain itself again.
2 - Embrace Constraint
Steven Kolter says, “Think outside the box” is how the saying goes, but we might have it backward.
Constraints drive creativity — as jazz great Charles Mingus once explained: "You can’t improvise on nothing, man; you’ve gotta improvise on something.”
Kolter goes on to say, “The point is that sometimes the blank page is too blank to be useful. That’s why one of my cardinal rules in work is: Always know your starts and your endings. If I have these twin cornerstones in place, whatever goes in between — a book, an article, a speech — is simply about connecting the dots.”
Practical tip: Don’t pound your head against a wall, hoping a flash of pure creativity will come to you. Instead, understand the components that you must incorporate into your project, and think of innovative ways to use them.
3 - Practice Happiness
“Gratitude, mindfulness, exercise and sleep are non-negotiables for sustained peak performance.” Says Steve Kolter. “The nonnegotiable part is key. When life gets complicated, these four practices are often what we remove from our schedule. But when life gets complicated, lean into these practices instead to get the creativity needed to untangle the complicated.”
Practical tip: A healthy, happy life is the most fertile environment for creativity. Stress and deadlines are inevitable in any career, but on the whole, we can all improve our metrics of gratitude, mindfulness, exercise, and sleep.
P.S. Have you tried Mindhoney’s Sleep Challenge yet? This is a great place to start.
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