Be Creative: Instant Creativity Toolbox was first published in 2005 as Be incredibly creative by Infinite Ideas Limited. Although creativity is hard work, everyone has the ability to be creative. One of the outcomes of reading Be Creative: Instant Creativity Toolbox for readers is for them to introduce more sense of play into their lives. Be Creative: Instant Creativity Toolbox is “Very much about looking at everyday things in a different light and putting them to use in unusual ways.” The book teaches us how to become creative.
Be Creative: Instant Creativity Toolbox (not an affiliate link) takes about an hour-and-a-half to read and is not your regular book on creativity. It offers 52 ways for anyone to become more creative and at the end of each of the chapter there is an exercise. The best ways to read this book is to read it through once, then each week tackle one of the 52 ways to become more creative. Another way to use it, is to read it through once and then use it as a reference when you feel like you need a spurt of creativity. Here are 10 ways on how to be creative presented in Be Creative: Instant Creativity Toolbox:
- Capture your thought: When an idea comes to you capture it in a notebook or by electronic means.
- Do your research: Question everything and constantly ask “why?”
- Free thinking: Determine which environment or situation is best for optimal thinking, and use it to think freely.
- Bin your best work: Think of a project that you are working on, get rid of the element you perceive to be most important. If you killed the sacred cow, how does that improve the whole project? What better ideas and elements emerge?
- Seek out criticism: Constructive criticism is very useful, but you have to set parameters so that you get the kind of feedback that you are looking for. For example, what did you like the most about the story? If you were writing this story, what changes would you make and why?
- Be childlike: Approach things with the curiosity of a child and their power of concentration when obsessed with something.
- Questions galore: Ask yourself questions to stretch your mental capacity. The book offers many questions to ask yourself.
- Remember: Use techniques to remember things – chunking, mnemonics, and acrostics. Whatever tool works for you.
- Ask for help: This allows others to contribute their ideas which help you to be more creative.
- Brain care: Become a continuous learner always updating your skills. The skills you used to get to where you are today won’t necessarily be the same skills you need tomorrow.
After I read Be Creative: Instant Creativity Toolbox, I pulled out 15 big ideas. I’m sure that your big ideas would be very different from mine.
15 Big Ideas from Be Creative: Instant Creativity Toolbox
- Have a sense of curiosity about the things around you.
- Gather things you find intriguing – postcards, bookmark interesting websites, newspaper clippings, interesting quotes, brochures, product packaging, and so on. Make annotations before you file them away to help with context later on. This process is called “jackdrawing”. Every now and again visit your collection of seemingly unrelated and sometimes useless information. In what ways can you connect them?
- Look at the work you do, which aspects are repeatable? If you change the sequence of the way you do your work, what would be the outcome?
- One in five items on your to-do list is essential, do you know which one that is? Each essential task is often made up of many smaller tasks, know what the smaller tasks are and complete them one by one.
- Set deadlines and impose restrictions on yourself and see where it leads you.
- Capture fleeting ideas, thoughts and insights before they vanish.
- Question your mental models – your belief systems, the assumptions you make, cultural biases and so on.
- Look at things from a new perspective. You can metaphorically rise above it, go below it, or look at it from a distance.
- Creatively swipe – look to other industries for solutions to problems in your own. Swipe elements from each of the other industry.
- If you’re in love with an idea, let it go and see what happens. If a project is not coming together the way you’d like it. Take out the key component, and see what happens. You may be surprised to find out that suddenly everything gels together.
- Role play! Assume the part of another person and act it out, how does it change you? If you walk a mile in another person’s shoes, the experience changes you.
- Laugh a lot – it helps to eliminate tension.
- Innovate – challenge the status quo, listen to other people’s point of view, fail often and learn from mistakes, network continuously to meet different people and share ideas, disagree constructively, and always be willing to change your mind
- Turn your vacation into a creative endeavour, what if you savour the experience by creating a documentary of your vacation. With that in mind, would you plan your vacation differently?
- Listen, listen, and listen!
I recommend Be Creative: Instant Creativity Toolbox (not an affiliate link). Please let me know your thoughts in the comments section below. Many readers read this blog from other sites, so why don’t you pop over to The Invisible Mentor and subscribe (top on the right hand side) by email or RSS Feed.
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