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Posted on 10.27.2011
Three Simple Techniques to Boost Your Creativity
Whether you are crafting your next successful press release or brainstorming ideas for your client's new killer marketing campaign, your ability to think creatively is one of your most important skills and resources. Your creativity is why you get paid the big bucks and why your campaigns win the awards. But what happens when the creative juices just aren't flowing? Here are three simple techniques that can quickly boost your creativity when the well is running dry.
Many times you can be too close to a project making it difficult to think about it in creative ways. At this point, you should step away and allow your mind to think about something else. This doesn't have to be a trip to the beach (although that can help). Go for a walk. Hit the gym. Go to lunch with a good friend. Ask your co-workers about their weekend and chat for a while. Allowing your brain to rest, if only for a few moments, is a powerful way to re-energize your creative abilities.
Return to sixth grade.
Sixth graders are at that point in life where they get the basics but are curious about everything else. Therefore, they ask the best questions. Why do it this way? What if we did it this way? Why? Why not? Try looking at your project through the eyes of a six grader and question everything. Why am I doing it this way? What if I did it like this? What is the ultimate goal here? How am I accomplishing the goal? What would I do with an unlimited budget? Feel free to bring in a co-worker, friend or even an actual six grader to help you ask as many questions as possible. And remember, "Because we've always done it this way,"
is never the answer.
Nothing gets the creative juices flowing more than having fun. Begin a brainstorming session with a ten minute game of Charades or Pictionary. Do a role-playing session where someone in your office acts out a customer experiencing your marketing campaign or reading your press release. Have a contest to see who can come up with the most ideas for a new campaign in fifteen minutes and reward the winner with a gift card or some other office prize. There's no limit to the games you can play. Fun activities will boost the camaraderie and creativity of your team which will be reflected in your follow-on work.
Remember, you don't always have to reinvent the wheel. If you're having trouble coming up with that next big idea, you can always just look around. Take note of what similar successful campaigns
are doing and think about how you could apply those techniques to your current project. Creativity is all around, and sometimes all you have to do open your eyes to it.