Let’s face it: we all wish to be creative geniuses. In fact, it’s almost a passing common that creativity can be taught. It is only inherited. False! Hundreds of studies have demonstrated that creativity is a skill that can be built up, and very easily.
Indeed, research has shown that only 30 percent of creativity is genetically predetermined. The remaining 70 per cent is up to you.
Here are five different scientifically proven ways that can help you boost your creativity:
- Researchers from the University of British Columbia found that 70 decibels is the optimal noise level for creativity. It leads to a greater amount of distraction compared to lower noise levels and some distraction is important for creativity.
- Psychology professor Nicola Baumann set up an experiment where one group of people had to squeeze a ball with their left hand while the other group had to squeeze a ball with their right. It was found that this simple act of squeezing one’s left hand activated a brain circuit associated with thinking holistically and intuitively, and thus more creatively.
- Sweat it out - Participating in 30 minutes of aerobic exercise has been found to increase the ability to think creatively. A study published in the NIH indicated that exercise was a sure-fire way to combat things like mental fog and fatigue, noting that “physical activity is associated with improved affective experience and enhanced cognitive processing.”
- Another way to foster creativity is through recognizing patterns in what we observe. For example, if you read a lot of detective novels, you might realize that detective fiction uses a finite number of motifs and be able to predict the outcome of stories with similar premises.
- Do Nothing! The best-selling author Alan Cohen once wrote: “There is virtue in work and there is virtue in rest. Use both and overlook neither.” Sometimes your mind just needs to take some rest from processing the huge loads of information in the form of internet articles and posts, text messages and other miscellaneous materials.
Here’s the thing: To wish and to do - are completely different things. So, rather wishing to be a genius, start with doing simple things in different ways, in more innovative ways. Think about the overarching issues and questions in your field (How do I end world hunger in one week? How can I invent a phone that doesn’t require a charger?) And practice brainstorming open-ended solutions.
There! You will be good to go.