You might think that creativity is something you can’t do. So many people say, ‘oh I’m just not the creative type.’ What you might not realize, is that it is within everyone to be creative. And it’s not just good for the soul to sketch or play with clay or embroider. Creativity comes in all shapes and sizes, and it has some unexpected benefits for the rest of your life.
Here are a few of the benefits:
Creativity helps you solve problems
Fostering your creativity trains your brain to be more adaptable and flexible in dealing with all sorts of problems. Such as how to solve that problem with a work project, a relationship, or a career issue.
Being creative takes you out of the linear thinking mode and the confines of regular logic. Options stop being only black and white. Your mind can look at your problem from many different angles and sees potential nuances that you otherwise might miss.
Creativity can help you live longer
Surprising but true! Studies have shown that being creative can actually reduce your mortality risk and add years to your life. Making, drawing, woodwork, knitting, or painting all fire different neural pathways in your brain and help to reduce stress and anxiety. Creativity slows cognitive aging and enables you to lead a happier, more fulfilling life. Do you want that?
Creativity grows your confidence
Learning a creative skill takes application and plenty of practice. You’ll make a lot of mud pies and lopsided pots before you can create beautiful and functional tableware. Mastering your chosen art form helps you develop confidence in your abilities that will overflow into other areas of your life. As you overcome failure and succeed in making beautiful things, you will see that persistence and optimism is the way to success.
Creativity is immensely satisfying
There is nothing like starting with raw materials and being able to make something unique from them. Whether you start with a lump of clay or you make your summer wardrobe from scratch, you know you have the skills and creative spark to make whatever you want. You aren’t dependent on stores and other people’s work. You know you can start with zero skills and learn a completely new skill. It will empower you even further.
Creativity helps you express yourself
Making artwork, a piece of writing, or an item of clothing allows you to make something that is completely yours. No one else can make the exact same thing that you can.
Living a creative life can help you see that whatever you bring to the world is as unique and special as you are. No matter what form your creativity takes, who you are is expressed through that, and helps you expand into a fuller expression of who you are.
Continue reading to see how you can develop your creativity or give your already creative self an extra boost. You might be surprised to hear that you can actually train your brain to be more creative!
Often times, people think that creativity is some mystical, innate skill, and you either have it, or you don’t. But research has shown that there are some strategies you can use to stimulate creativity in your everyday life and benefit from new ways of thinking and problem solving. Find four of them below.
4 Easy Ways to Train Your Brain to Be More Creative
1. Switch up your regular routine
It’s easy to get stuck in a rut of doing things the same way every day. But the more you stimulate your brain with change and novelty, the more flexible and creative your brain gets.
Keep your creative mind on its toes by reading new books, trying different foods and places to eat, even trying different routes through your neighbourhood.
Switching up your usual routines will stimulate your mind and get you thinking about new possibilities and approaches to life.
2. Relax the rules
So much of what you do is bounded by shoulds and have-tos. From those eight glasses of water you’re supposed to drink, the right foods to eat, to whether it’s okay to talk in the elevator, much of your life is probably restricted by how you think you should behave.
Try breaking some of the rules today. Smile and say hi to the waiter or the bus driver. Crack a joke in that silent elevator. Open up a bit and allow your creative, maybe even slightly anarchic brain to flourish.
3. Look around you
Another good way of relaxing your mind and allowing your creativity to grow is to simply sit in the present and observe what’s going on around you. Work your way through each of your senses and really notice your environment. What can you hear, see, smell, feel, even taste? Notice everything and then write down what comes into your head.
When you walk down the street, look up and around. Chances are you’ll be the only person not looking at their phone or frowning into the idle distance. Don’t miss out on noticing the signs of spring or autumn. Look up and around and see how many colours and textures are right there in front of you.
4. Really talk to people
How much of your conversation is either you talking or being talked at? Or just through online messaging and texting? Step back a little and really engage with other people. Don’t just talk or think of what you’re going to say next. Practice active listening and give the other person space to speak.
Real conversation can open up all sorts of possibilities and creative solutions you might never have thought of.
So there you have it. A chance to be creative, get inspired, and explore what you might never thought possible. When was the last time you used your imagination? Tap into it and see what it wants to tell you or show you. See where it takes you. Be open to the possibilities.
Jennifer Regular is a Soul-Centred Empowerment Coach guiding purpose-driven entrepreneurs to focus on the difference they want to make in alignment with their Soul Calling, while effectively managing their time and energy to prevent overwhelm. She is also the Author of Embrace Your Power: A Healing Journal of Self-Discovery and the host of the Wisdom Speakers & Seekers Podcast and Wise Woman Wednesdays on YouTube. Download your guide to Living With Passion and Purpose here.