It’s no secret that the COVID-19 pandemic has turned our world upside down. The new monotony of daily life has left many feeling like they’ve lost their creative spark.
Creativity is (in part) a result of experience. But even in these trying times, everyone has the potential to become more imaginative and get their inspiration juices flowing again by enjoying experiences that wire the brain for creative expression.
To learn more about easy and practical ways you can boost your creativity, keep reading! Seriously, you won’t be disappointed.
Mix Up Your Routine
We are creatures of habit by nature. Even in these weird and unexpected times, we have found ways to integrate new routines into our lives. But sometimes, switching up that routine can ignite a spark plug of creativity.
Making small changes in your routine can get you out of your comfort zone, like swapping out your typical breakfast bagel for eggs on toast. If you work from home, find a new temporary workspace that is a nice change of scenery. These routine mix-ups can be just enough to boost creativity and trigger new ideas.
Move Your Body
Getting your body moving through exercise is a welcome way to spark creativity—and it’s been proven. A 2013 study found a strong link between regular exercise and creativity, suggesting that those who exercised at least four times a week could think more creatively than those who lived a more sedentary lifestyle.
The reason? The researchers found that regular exercise was connected to better divergent and convergent thoughts—two essential elements of creative thinking and problem-solving. Moving helps us think more creatively, so find ways of movement that feel best to you, whether that’s walking, running, pilates, dancing, or yoga. Go get that brain and body pumping.
For many people being creative can be stressful. They feel the pressure of coming up with new, creatively original ideas. But the truth is that no idea is original; everything that has ever been done or created was inspired by something or someone else. Relieve yourself of the pressure to be original and get inspired by the people and projects you find interesting and exciting. Your unique brain, thought-processes, and creative touch will ensure that your idea is ultimately yours, no matter your inspiration.
Practice Daily Creativity
Creativity doesn’t have to be a chore, but it can be something we do every day (even without realizing it). There are countless ways to practice daily creativity, no matter your field, experience, or interests. If you’re an artist or designer, you can challenge yourself to create a new design every day. Even if you hate what you end up producing, the point is that you dove back into the creative process, so don’t stress about the outcome.
Try Something New
Like we mentioned earlier, experiencing something new encourages our brain to think more creatively. In these restricted COVID times, we can still experience new things that inspire us and get our creative juices flowing. Here are a few creative ideas of fun, new activities you can try at home while quarantined:
- Write poetry (p.s. it doesn’t have to rhyme).
- Complete a new puzzle, whether it’s a 2,000-piece jigsaw puzzle or a Rubik’s Cube. These puzzles will ignite problem-solving networks in the brain.
- Learn a foreign language.
- Try out new baking recipes.
- Write a short story, novel, or crack open a new journal.
- Start the blog or YouTube channel you’ve always dreamt of creating.
- Learn how to make origami.
- Travel digitally and experience new cultures and terrains through nature documentaries.
Write Down All Your Ideas, Even the Bad Ones
We lose so many ideas just because we are too tired or lazy to jot them down or don’t have anything to write them down on. Make an effort to start carrying a notebook or journal around with you and recording any ideas that come to mind, even if they’re not good. The point is not to block anything from coming to mind, and you can always edit the ideas later. If you prefer to use your phone, use a notes app like Evernote to write down your thoughts.
If you are brainstorming, allow yourself to be silly and open. Writing down anything and everything that comes to mind can be all you need to get the ball rolling.
Take Time Off When You Need It
Rest and a little bit of downtime can be extremely beneficial because let’s face it: we can’t be creative all of the time. If you feel like you might need a day, morning, or night off to relax and reset, don’t hesitate to do so.
Sleep A Little
Studies have linked quality sleep time to boosts in the creative flow. Not only can a regular sleep pattern positively impact your health, mood, and productivity, but it can also make creativity easier by supporting memory and a clear, well-functioning mind.
Dreams can also get your creative juices flowing by introducing concepts and ideas you may not previously have thought of. Lucid dreaming, the practice of being conscious of the dreams you are experiencing, has also been shown to improve creativity. This mesh of consciousness and unconsciousness allows you to explore new possibilities without the usual rules of reality.
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