I scour the internet for any new ideas about building creativity. It’s my main interests. I’ve seen lots of lists and ideas and things to do. Lists are great, but they rarely get me to act. How many times have you heard the advice to doodle or take a class?
Those are fine ideas, but we can make it more simple and basic.
I’ve mentioned that creativity is nothing more than an expression of yourself. (Yes, I know it’s many other things as part of that, but at it’s essence).
This is all we can do.
Pull out what is in us and put it into action or into art or into our relationships or out into our lives. I’ll get back to this later, for now, let’s check the first step.
Put stuff in
This is simple, put stuff inside you. Feed your mind daily.
Here is a list of ways to fill yourself with new info and experiences, some are basic while others are more involved. This is just to get you started. There are many more ways to fill yourself, including actively being creative.
Read, study, research.
Any subject that catches your fancy. Follow your curiosity to wherever it takes you, but pick something, anything, an interest, a new skill or technique. Take a class or get a tutor and deepen your knowledge. Explore and enrich yourself.
Go somewhere new.
Traveling is great if you can get away, but if you can’t go far, go somewhere new around you. Visit a museum, go to a new park, eat at a new restaurant.
Notice what’s around you.
This is the counter to traveling because there is so much around us that we don’t even notice. Creatures, flowers, people, art, signs, buildings, weather patterns, so much is right outside your door to discover. Don’t miss the richness of life.
Talk to people.
Get beyond the surface stuff, get to know someone’s inner life. Their hopes, dreams, stories, experiences. Put yourself in another person’s shoes. Understand their experience. Learn from them.
Go after new experiences.
This you can do wherever you are too. There are all sorts of new things to feel and see and do. Climb a hill and see the view, try cooking some new foods, go to a conference or convention and learn about the latest in your field or interest.
In short take every chance to gain new knowledge, ideas, insights, perspectives, skills and whatever else.
Combine and recombine
This is where the magic is.
You have all this new material in you, now turn on the blender!
Be like the DNA, combine and recombine the ideas and skills and perspectives into new sequences and combinations. What you have a in you is a big pot of soup now. Heat it up, stir, and let everything collide with one other. All sorts of new connections will form, and you will get tons of new ideas by connecting ideas and perspectives and skills.
Now you got it all together, it’s time to pull it out.
Here is where the real creative work is – expressing all those new ideas and connections. Letting it out into the world to solve problems, build new programs and machines, to express yourself however you choose to. In art, in relationships, at the job, every corner of your life can benefit from creative expression.
It isn’t necessarily easy to do this process. That’s where the work really is.
Remember our old friend, questions.
Asking yourself the right questions is key. It’s like throwing out your fishing line and waiting for a nibble from a fish. Your questions will direct your mind what you need pulled out from the soup.
Ask a great question and you will get a great idea.
Ask a bad one…. you can imagine how that will go. Not well.
Not all of your answers are going to be of the quality you want, but sometimes you must take action with what you have. Next time you cast your line, you are sure to hook a better fish!
It’s time to take action, because this is a big part of your creativity training.
Once you have some answers, now time for some massive action. This is where it all happens.
Your creativity is expressed and becomes something in the world. You get to try out your ideas and learn from them. There is no fail, there is only lessons to be learned and improvements to be thought of.
Do and become!
Get to work
Practice, practice, practice
You can’t get away from practice.
That’s what building creativity really is.
Practicing doing these steps over and over until you are good at filling yourself, asking great questions, pulling out a great answer and putting into action.
There are no shortcuts or easy pills.
No hopping over steps.
It’s slow work, but it’s worth the time. The reward is mastery of your craft, and even more important building a life that is fulfilling!