You may consider creativity to be something that clever copywriters or marketers can pull out whenever they need to create an enticing ad or as a trait that only a few people, like highly successful serial entrepreneurs or talented Improv actors, naturally possess.
However, According to Keith Sawyer, research psychologist and the author of ” Zig Zag: The Surprising Path to Greater Creativity,” everybody can become more creative by following eight steps, though not necessarily in a linear sequence. The path to creativity of Keith Sawyer is more than just a back and forth procedure where the steps towards more imagination and creativity develop and feed off of each other.
The book is a treasure packed with fascinating results from research studies as well as an array of techniques that will make you think differently. In actual fact, Sawyer advocates what is likely to be a major change in the mindset of most people. Finding innovative ideas shouldn’t be something we wait for until we’re faced with a pressing requirement. Instead, it’s an ability which can be practiced every day to tackle life’s challenges and also discover potential.
Tips To Increase Your Creativity
Here are his tips to increase your creativity with some suggestions to help you in your journey.
1. Ask The Right Questions
Sawyer recounts the tales about the origins of Starbucks and Instagram. Both companies wouldn’t be where the way it is now if their founders hadn’t persevered in trying to find solutions to the initial questions they wanted to find the answers to. Instead of asking “How can I recreate the Italian espresso bar in the United States?”
Howard Shultz eventually looked at the things that weren’t working with that idea and instead asked “How can I create a comfortable, relaxing environment to enjoy great coffee?” While Kevin Systrom originally pondered how to create a fantastic app for sharing locations, the better idea turned out to be “How can we create a simple photo-sharing app?”
- Without Thinking About It Write 10 Variants Of This Query: For instance for the standard query “How can I build a better mousetrap,” you might consider asking questions like “How do I get the mice out of my house?” And “What does a mouse want?” and “How can I make my backyard more attractive to a mouse than my house?” The new question could be a more relevant one than the one you had originally.
- Debug Your Life: Do not be adamant in your criticism of a product or event that you interact with each day. After you’ve made the list, consider ways to reduce the irritations. This will boost your creativity as minor issues are often the result of larger ones. Steve Jobs, a genius innovator, was adept at identifying bugs that could hinder the experience of users with the product.
- Create Something And Then Modify Your Original Idea And Reinterpret It: Sometimes before you arrive at the correct answer it is necessary to create something. After you have made it make your invention, consider it as being used for purposes different that the original intention. This process shatters your initial assumptions and forces you to think about new perspectives.
2. Be A Professional
The secret to achieving extraordinary success isn’t just in the ability of the individual, but rather in intentional training. Studies suggest that becoming world-class in any field takes an average of 10,000 hours work. This isn’t just about repeating the same routine every day but. It’s about pushing yourself to accomplish tasks that are little beyond your abilities.
You must be an expert in a field before you can become a innovative in it. “Successful creators don’t just like knowledge, they thirst for it. They can’t stop asking questions, and they always go beyond what they’ve learned from teachers and books,” Sawyer writes. There are many ways to achieve this.
- Watch TED Talk: They’re free videos of inspirational hilarious, humorous, or interesting speeches given by brilliant individuals. For a start go through six TED Talks that every Entrepreneur Must watch.
- Utilize All Of Your Senses In Order To Completely Dive Into A Topic: Let’s suppose you want to know more about Mystras, a town in Mystras, Greece. You can learn a little bit of the Greek language, look up pictures that depict the Peloponnese online or prepare some of the traditional cuisine, watch videos of the traditional events, listen to the local radio station, or send an email to the innkeeper in Mystras to find out more about what Mystras is like.
- Get A Mentor: Most Nobel Prize winners have them.
3. Be Aware And Open
People who are creative are always looking for solutions. This can be achieved by being more attentive and practicing mindfulness. This is the act of consciously observing things, and not judging individuals you meet based on your assumptions or the categories you’ve established within your head. Instead, you should be open and curious , and beware of stereotypes about individuals.
- Make Yourself Luck: Researchers have found that those who say they are fortunate are more likely to be aware of things more often than self-described luckless people. They also react to unexpected opportunities and are able to network with other people because they’re curious. The unlucky ones tend to be anxious and so focused on their narrow objectives that they overlook opportunities.
- Don’t Let Accidents Disturb You: A lot of inventions — like Penicillin, The Slinky and chewing gum came about due to someone who didn’t simply ignore an accident but rather studied the situation instead.
- Play With Toys For Children: Kids who play are very adept in making new connections. “I’m not the least bit self-conscious about my toy collection,” Sawyer writes. “If you walk into just about any supercreative company, you’ll find toys all over the place.”
4. Play And Play And Pretend
While playing your mind wanders and your mind has the time to get to work. This is the reason why taking time off from work is crucial to let your creativity flourish.
- Discover The Next: Imagine yourself as an incredibly successful person five years from today. Note the details of the kind of success you can imagine. Also, write down the story of how you came to it asking yourself questions like, “What was the first step you took to move toward your goal?” as well as “What was one early obstacle and how did you move past it?”
- Don’t Complete Something: If at the conclusion of the day, you have left a project incomplete, it might be easier to get it done the following day. It’s because your these threads of your mind hang in your brain and during the things you do not have to worry about, your subconscious may reattach to them and provide you with the insight you need.
- Start As An Expert: Learn to do something new, for example, Hula-Hooping or juggling, making archery or wood.
5. Create A Wealth Of Concepts
This is in which you brainstorm ideas and lots of them.
- Find Unusual Applications For Everyday Household Objects: There are a myriad of ways to make use of a paperclip or brick or knife? You have five minutes to think of an extensive list. Don’t fret over whether you’re sloppy or not.
- You Can Try To Flipping: This is the place to make use of free association to generate new terms. The trick is to create an alternative type of connection between each. For instance, if, for example, you begin beginning with “carrot” you can’t free connect another vegetable. Instead you could pick “stick,” as in the expression “carrot and a stick,” and then “glue” because you’re thinking of a stick. Another illustration: “Rock” might lead to “Scotch” because you drink it over rocks.
- Set An Ideal Time: Set a time when you’re calm, sharp and unaffected. Julia Cameron, author of the well-known self-help guidebook “The Artist’s Way” suggests spending 30 minutes every morning to write in your journal. As you do, you’ll notice new ideas creeping in.
6. Combine Ideas
This is when you combine items that aren’t usually put together. In a study that was conducted recently, British neuroscientist Paul Howard Jones asked people to tell stories using only three words. For one group of participants, the words were related like “brush,” “teeth,” and “shine.” Some people also received words that were not related, such as “cow,” “zip,” and “star.” The recipients of the non-related words crafted more imaginative stories.
- Create Remote Connections: Look up page 56 in two books and look for the fifth sentence in each. Then, create a story which describes the connection to the other.
- Utilize Analogy: Find similarities to two objects that appear to be different. Find something that isn’t part of your issue, and then identify five structural aspects of it. As opposed to listing “sharp” or “metal” for a knife, as an instance, you’d need to find things that “requires downward pressure to cut.” How do these qualities apply to the problem you’re trying to solve?
- Connect With Those That Are Different From Yourself: We hang out with other people like us. While this may be soothing but you’re not in fact stretching yourself. Try imagining you as someone else, such as the chef, a foreigner student, or even a inspector of buildings. How do they see the world?
7. Find The Best Concepts
If you’ve gone through the first six steps, you’ll have plenty of concepts. Now , the challenge is choosing the most effective ones.
- Be Aware Of What You’re Searching To Find: To do that it is important to believe in your gut feeling that an idea is beautiful. Sawyer is also adamant about sticking to concepts that are easy and elegant as well as durable (the latter refers to a plan that will continue to function even in the face of adversity or in the event of misuse).
- Create Ideas That Compete With One Another: Select two of them and describe what makes them different even in the most subtle of ways. If you have more than 50 ideas, put them all on a sticky notepad or index card. Moving ideas that appear similar closely. It will result in idea clusters and will be able to see fascinating differences between ideas. Perhaps they all differ along the same line.
- Do Not Focus On The Positive: Once you’ve decided that your idea is good take note of the pros and cons of it then assign each one a value between 1 and 10 depending on how important it is. The number of pros is likely to be more than your total for cons. It is also important to consider what could happen in the event of a catastrophe. What horrible events could occur to hinder your plan’s potential success?
- Never End Making Edits: Everything can always be improved. You can ask a devil’s advocate to provide several reasons as to why your idea isn’t a good one. Ask people you trust to be honest to examine your idea. Even ideas that fail could be reused. For instance, the Post It, Sawyer points out that it was the result an adhesive that didn’t perform well.
8. Get Something New From Your Ideas
Sawyer is holding up Silicon Valley design firm IDEO for its use of “design thinking,” which is a method of bringing the simplest versions of an idea to the world as quickly as is possible, perhaps within an hour or day, by using materials like cardboard or clay to shape the idea. It’s a method of thinking by making, a method that can lead to the development of new ideas.
- Draw An Image: Even if you believe you aren’t able to draw or draw, you are able to at most sketch and nobody is ever required to view the work you’ve put on paper. Problems that are abstract, such as your relationship with someone , or an overwhelming workload can be improved by making sketches. Making cartoons with exaggerated shapes, or using simple symbols can be helpful.
- Create An Image Collage: Grab a stack of magazines and hunt for advertisements and pictures. Cut them up if they relate to your issue in any way. Then, adhere them to a large section made of paper. Keep the art on your work area where you can think about the issue. It could give you a fresh view of your issue.
- Create Something: Legos, Tinkertoys, an Erector Set and modeling clay Silly Putty along with Play-Doh are all excellent options to construct your own idea. Sawyer himself keeps a stash full of Legos inside his backpack in case you’re bored.
Take a look at Sawyer’s book If you’re interested in knowing more. He claims to have more than 100 ideas for being more innovative.