As students you are often required to use their creativity for projects, assignments and essays which make up a vital portion of your overall grades. The problem is, sometimes the ideas you need do not come easily!
In this article we’re going to learn four ridiculously simple ways to kick-start your creativity and stimulate new ideas today. Some of the greatest creative spirits, artists and thinkers of all time have used these techniques to solve their problems and gain new perspectives which allowed them to come up with solutions.From helping respected philosophers to genius military commanders to best-selling novelists and revolutionary scientists, these tools are a powerful combination which you can use easily and for free to come up with new ideas and get your creative juices flowing!
It may seem remarkably simple, but going for a walk is one of the most effective ways to have creative ideas!
The great German philosopher and thinker Friedrich Nietzsche said “All truly great thoughts are conceived while walking“. The legendary French military commander Napoleon Bonaparte held all of his meetings and made crucial decisions while walking.Walking briskly is a light cardiovascular exercise which causes your heart to pump blood around your body faster. Naturally, this blood eventually reaches your brain and stimulates your creativity.
Walking can bring many other benefits to your life. It can help you think more clearly and work out problems all while having good physical exercise! Research has shown that walking for thirty minutes in the evening can also help you relax if you are having problems sleeping.
Kick-starting your creativity is just one of the many benefits of going for walks. Make walking a regular part of your life and you will find a marked improvement in many areas, including the amount of great ideas you generate!
Change Your Surroundings
If you’re the type of person who tends to follow a rigid routine and sticks to only a few locations, you may benefit greatly from spicing things up. and trying to go somewhere new.
Travelling is one of the best known ways to come up with new ideas and tackle problems from a different angle. Travel doesn’t have to be to a new country, however. It can be visiting a new part of your city, taking a short trip to somewhere peaceful and natural or even just spending time with new people and changing your daily routine.
When we disrupt our routine and find ourselves in new locations we force our brains out of a state of complacency and into a state of heightened awareness. We see new things, experience unfamiliar sensations and often meet new people who stimulate our minds with new ideas.
All of this is highly beneficial to the creative process. One of America’s greatest writers, Jack Kerouac, would often go on long bus journeys to new cities in order to come up with new ideas for stories. The world-famous novelist Ernest Hemingway made travel a large part of his life and attributed it to some of his greatest stories.
Clearly travel has very powerful effects on human creativity. Can you think of somewhere you have never been in your city or somewhere you would like to explore for an afternoon or on the weekend with a friend?
Set a date, check out this area and set aside a little time while you are there to think about your essay, assignment, project or whatever problem you are facing which requires a creative solution.
Create a “Mastermind” Group
In his best-selling book “Think & Grow Rich” author Napoleon Hill tracks the lives of some of the most successful people in history who have achieved great things.
He found that one thing most of them had in common is a group of friends or peers who they regularly met with to discuss ideas, brainstorm and refine their ideas with.
Hill speculated that when two or more people get into a deeply focused conversation a “third mind” develops and often new ideas, creative solutions and better outcomes can be found and reached.
We don’t have to buy into the idea of a third mind to understand the benefits having a group on intelligent, motivated friends to talk with can bring.
How many times can you think of when talking about a problem helped you find the solution in your personal life? This can also work for your academic life, too!
Find and form a group of people you respect and trust as a mastermind group and meet regularly to discuss ideas and figure out solutions. The energy of multiple minds can help us see things from a new perspective, can bring new ideas and information to the table and is always greater than one mind alone!
Can you think of a few people you respect and trust to be a part of your group? Why not approach them and see if they like the idea and could benefit from the same kind of set-up? Meet regularly and discuss your projects, assignments and ideas.
Harness the Power of Music
Music is one of the greatest creations of humanity.
A great piece of music can lift our mood and inspire us, it can motivate and lift us out of a slump, and it can stimulate our minds and cause us to think in new ways.
One of the greatest minds of all time, Albert Einstein, testified that music was an essential part of his creative process. Einstein himself liked to play music and felt that the process of getting involved in a deeply engrossing activity helped him to think more clearly. If you can’t play an instrument however, listening to music can be just as beneficial.
Select a piece of inspirational, instrumental music without words or lyrics to process. Play the music, relax and begin brainstorming. Jot down ideas, write down questions related to the problem, critique existing arguments and solutions and try to come up with new solutions.
The power of music is something that has to be experienced to be believed. If it’s good enough for Einstein himself it should be good enough for us, too!
Can you think of a powerful piece of music which puts you in an inspired, energized or relaxed state of mind? Why not try listening to this while working on your project?
We hope you’ve enjoyed this article and the methods introduced here aid you in becoming more creative. You may never become the next Einstein or Ernest Hemingway, but you certainly will boost your creative thinking and get better scores on your essays and projects if you put these techniques to use.
Who knows, maybe a little spark of genius lies within you just waiting to be ignited?