How To Boost Your Creative Thinking Skills
Creative thinking skills help you come up with new ideas, problem solve, and approach things in an original way by thinking outside of the box.
What is creative thinking
Creative thinking is simply approaching ideas from a fresh perspective. Taking a different route from the conventional or normal. The trouble is many people fear being original or different, and just don’t want to stand out from the crowd. There is something rebellious about it that some find too uncomfortable.
All of us have the ability to be creative, but sadly much of this is lost as we grow up. I think we can all remember making models, creating imaginative drawings, and making houses from building bricks. I still remember making potato cut stencils, and using wax crayons and black paint to create beautiful line drawings.
Maintaining this into adulthood is hard as we’re taught to pass exams and get a job. The world is changing though, as creative industries are growing. This means more opportunities for those that develop theircreativity.
Creative thinking techniques
You can develop your creative thinking skills in many ways.
Do something different everyday. We are all creatures of habit, and live our lives by routine. This is necessary to a certain extent, especially if you go to work, or have kids.
By varying your routine, even just a little bit, you’re encouraging yourself to think more creatively. Even driving to work along a different route, or getting the kids involved in making a new recipe for dinner will stretch you creatively.
Let your mind wander
Daydream and let your mind wander. This might sound an odd thing to suggest when you want creative thinking skills. However, trying to force creativity never works. This is why some of your best ideas come to you when you’re relaxed. Going for a drive, or a walk often seem to trigger ideas for me. These activities both require concentration and focus, but you’re relaxed enough for ideas to pop into your mind.
Brainstorming is a great exercise to improve your creative thinking skills. You can do this with a group of people, or on your own. But the idea is to simply write down or draw anything that enters your head. You’re not forcing things, but in a sense, emptying your mind on to paper.
This how anyone in the creative industry comes up with great ideas. You start with one idea, then brainstorm anything you can associate with it, no matter how off track it may seem at the time. You can really get the creative flow going this way.
Mind mapping is another effective way to boost your creativity. This is a visual tool, and lets you express your thoughts and ideas in a way that’s fun and artistic. You can read more about mind mapping here.
You can simply take a blank piece of paper, a few coloured pens or crayons and get started immediately. However there are also free mind mapping tools online if you prefer to do this digitally.
Have you ever found that some of your best creative thoughts come to you just as you’re drifting off to sleep? This is all to do with brainwaves. You see, your brain is continually emitting electromagnetic waves of different frequencies. When you’re in a very relaxed state or just entering into light sleep your brain is producing alpha waves. These are associated with creative thinking, and experienced during meditation or mindfulness.
Your brain is in an alpha wave state when you’re relaxed on the sofa watching tv, so this is often why you may get flashes of inspiration when watching your favourite soap. I know this frequently happens to me!
During much of our conscious waking time we are in a beta brain wave state. This makes us focused and able to concentrate on tasks. You wouldn’t be able to do much of your daily chores if you were in a dreamy alpha state!
Change your brain waves and get creative!
You can actually change the frequency of your brain waves using binaural beats. Meditation can do this, but if you’re new to it, or just want immediate results, binaural beats could be your answer.
Theta Binaural Beats To Boost Creativity (2 HOURS)
Binaural beats aren’t real sounds, but an auditory response to two different tones. These are played one in each ear using headphones. The beats you hear in your head sync your brain waves to that same frequency.
So you can in effect change the frequency of your brain waves by listening to specific binaural beats. This is known as brainwave entrainment and the syncing process happens almost immediately. It’s certainly not a new idea, as your brain is constantly syncing to sounds. Have you noticed how playing upbeat fast paced dance music makes you feel energised? Or the gentle sound of a trickling waterfall makes you feel calm and relaxed?
The lower your brain wave frequency the more relaxed you become. Theta brain waves are experienced during light sleep, and as I mentioned previously those brief moments as you drift from wakefulness into sleep is often when you get some of your best ideas.
The above video on this page has 2 hours of relaxing theta binaural beats with a background of birdsong to help your creative thinking.
If you’ve enjoyed this post on creative thinking skills please share:)