1. Take breaks.
I get it. We live in a dunkin-drinking, hustle-grind culture that celebrates working long hours and never taking a vacation. But that paradigm is broken, my friends. Its dying, making us sick, and creativity is sure to shrivel under these grueling circumstances. Don't get me wrong, I love a deadline, focused assignment or exciting timeline, but in spurts, not spews. Breaks are the simplest way to increase creativity. When the mind has time to noodle, doodle, and rest, that's when the magic happens. By taking some time aside to create space for new thinking, you are giving yourself the gift of restoration and innovation.
2. Surround Surround Yourself with Capture Tools.
What the hello sunshine is a capture tool? Anything that catches the cascade of jeweled magic dripping form your brain. Your mind is constantly generating new ideas, musings, insights, frustrations, and queries. By surrounding yourself with tools that can capture this chocolate fountain of ideas, you are giving your mind a break, letting the tool do the remembering. I've seen people use a small notepad or index cards in their pocket, the voice memo tool or notes app on their phone, the back of their hand, notebooks in every drawn in their home, or a piece of paper under their pillow. Whatever is it, allow yourself the peace of mind, to be the notetaker of your own mad scientist. This way, you'll be open and present to the newest, most disruptive, bizarre meandering thought, your child's laughter, or the stunning sunset unfolding before your eyes. Ideas just want to be known. Capture them.
Lame. I know. But sleeping enough for your particular body is going to make a tyrannosaurus rex of a difference in your creative life. Sleeping allows the body to restore, replenish, and recalibrate. By giving yourself the gift of enough sleep, you are inviting your creative muse out for a date on a vineyard in the French countryside, rather than stomping on her toe as she tries to make your breakfast, blurry eyed and resentful. Be kind to your muse, and your body, mind and soul. Sleeping is also a marvelous time for creative breakthroughs. Keeping a simple dream journal can illuminating yield eureka and WTF moments galore.
4. Talk to Children
Children are creative bubble machines. You know those battery operated machines that just keep hocking out bubbles with seemingly no effort? That's kids and creativity. They don't try, they just are. Talking to children, and listening to what they have to say with undivided attention is a game changer. We have so much to learn from their brave ideas, connection to their emotions, inherent ability to not give a flying Eff (until their are taught to), and general fart-loving playfulness.