I have noticed that, for me and for others that work creatively, it can be difficult to get into a creative mindset. For example, some of you might have side hustles where you have to get into a creative space after work. Some of you might work on your online business from home and go from doing business tasks and then to content creation. Or some of you have just had a difficult time lately getting those creative ideas flowing. We don’t want to be creatively stuck as it doesn’t help with productivity.
“You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.”Maya Angelou
I listened to episode 146 on The BossBabe Podcast and the guest was Jay Shetty. The host Nathalie Ellis and Jay Shetty were talking about creativity. He mentioned a study that had concluded that you can’t be logical and creative at the same time. Which kinda makes sense since we can get stuck in getting creative at times.
He mentioned that it is difficult going from a business meeting about numbers and then into a creative brainstorm closely thereafter. We can get tired if we demand to use one side of the brain and then the other side with barely any breaks.
So I’ve done some research and I have six tips for you to get you into a creative mindset.
If you don’t feel like you are in a creative mindset maybe it would help to find inspiration elsewhere. For example songs, a movie, a book, or a podcast. You can get inspired by someone else’s mindset. It might help to read fiction and even non-fiction books; believe it or not. Reading non-fiction books can give you insight into other people’s mindsets and how they perceive the world. I find that listening to audiobooks and podcasts helps me with creativity.
Another way to find inspiration is by working out. Somehow, while you are moving and getting the adrenaline flowing, so can your ideas. Places can also inspire you. I’ll get more into places in another tip below.
In the podcast interview with Jay Shetty, that I mentioned earlier, he talked about putting yourself in a creative mindset with your space. Have a home office or room or a specific area in your room be dedicated only for creative work. Put up posters or pictures that you love that can inspire you to be creative. Pictures of people, places, and principles, he said. It can help you get in the zone faster as you do the same thing every time in that space and you are reminded of how you feel when you see your pictures.
In your creative workspace, you can use scents and music to put you in a creative mood. Just as sight with pictures; smell and sound can be quite powerful. So if you’re having a difficult time being creative, think of what scents and sounds can be helpful for you to become creative. For example, you listen to one type of music when you’re working out and another when you’re sitting on the bus or in the car. What music gets you in the creative zone?
You can scent and sound design your creative space. Isn’t that so cool?
Give yourself time
Someone once said:
Productivity is the enemy of original thought.
By stepping away from your work for some time can be all you need to get in a creative mindset. This could be helpful because creativity needs time and space. You can do this by going out and seek out new environments and experiences. Some environments that can inspire you and help you be creative are the outdoors, museums, libraries, gardens, and coffee shops.
Some of these examples are learning environments and some are not. But they can just as well help you see the world in a different way and help with creativity. So can being in a beautiful exciting city or the forest with fresh air and bird noises to relax you. Now, with a global pandemic, it might be a little harder being outdoors. But I’m sure there’s at least a couple of places you can go.
The time you give yourself can be scheduled. You can schedule the time depending on how much you think you need to get into your creative zone. This leads me to the next tip.
I saved this quote on my phone not long ago:
The more I created a schedule, the more time I had to create.
Think of how often you can get in and out of doing creative work versus logical work in your business. Someone might be able to get in and out of being creative every week. If so, you can batch creative days in your schedule. Take 2-3 days in a row each week dedicated to your creative work.
Jay Shetty said that he “block creates and block business builds”. Meaning that he structures a certain amount of his days and weeks each month to either be creative or be logical.
He spends 9-10 days each month to be creative and 20 days each month to be logical. This sounds like an interesting approach and it could work for someone that blogs like me. It will be better for, for example, a brand or web designer to batch creative days each week since they are doing client work every week.
Put away your device
This is kind of self-explanatory, I believe. We all know how draining social media can be, how it can make us feel, and how much of a time suck it can be. It can be hard to get in the right headspace to be creative if used carelessly.
Being in reach and “plugged in” all the time, you’ll be in a reactive mode which hinders us from being creative. So just as you take time away from your logical work; take some time away from your device as well.
Practice divergent thinking
Divergent thinking was something I had never heard about before, but something I believe can be powerful. It can be used for different purposes. In this case, you can practice it to stimulate creativity in your work.
Do this by generating ideas without limitations and restrictions. You have to combat discouraging thoughts or the rational voice in your head so you can be free to enter the realm of creativity. Allow your mind to wander and explore what you could do. And forget what you should do. Practicing divergent thinking can help you get out of stale thinking habits and allow your creativity to come to light.
While researching this topic I found these tips being helpful and also surprising. I’ve implemented some of the tips and you can do that easily too. Schedule time where you can be away from your work and go out. Reflect on where you might be inspired. What do you want in your creative space inside? What do you want to see, hear and smell to get your creative ideas flowing?
I hope this helps you on your way to your blissful business!
Which tip will you try to get yourself in a creative mindset?