Many of us are under a lot of pressure to be creative; to think of new product ideas or original pitches, come up with new marketing campaigns, or even manage the identity of top global brands. The problem is we don’t really have concrete methods to help us. In reality, creativity doesn’t come naturally to most people, but it can certainly be learned over time. Since 97% of professionals in the Middle East feel it’s important for them to be creative in their life and 87% of professionals say that they are increasingly being made to think creatively at work, it’s about time for employees to learn how to spark their creative potential.
Interestingly, and as you will see in this article, only slight adjustments to your lifestyle and work setting are needed to help you get into a creative mood.
Here are five simple things you can do in order to add creativity to your career:
1. Find your creative spot
Have you ever felt that certain spots in your office or house inspire you to create? Do you produce great work when you sit in those places? This is no coincidence as the environment, your sitting position, and many other factors affect your brain’s ability to be creative. This is why many offices across the Middle East offer creative spaces where their employees can unwind and ideate. If your company doesn’t offer such spaces you could try suggesting the option to your HR department.
2. Be curious
Doing the same tasks day in and day out can kill a vital element for creativity: curiosity. You shouldn’t let this happen to you. The basis of innovation and creativity is curiosity. Once you come up with a satisfactory question or problem, you can find dozens of ways to solve it. This simple exercise can help you maintain your curiosity. Pick a daily topic – it could be work-related or anything really – and write down five questions you have in mind about how it works. Over time, you will develop a natural sense of curiosity and do even better at the workplace by pointing out flaws and suggesting improvements. In fact, having such a mindset is very important to get a job and be successful, according to a majority of professionals.
There shouldn’t be a day that goes by without you picking up a book which can either add to your knowledge or inspire you. Since lack of knowledge is one of the biggest obstacles to being creative, you must cultivate this into a habit. Reading industry-related material or books on creativity can stimulate the right side of your brain and get those creative juices flowing. Another great way to bring out your creative persona is to watch TED talks and similar videos. These videos are funny, inspirational and very informative. Before your next brainstorming session, take out some time for a TED talk, or read an inspirational stanza or two, and you will see the difference it makes.
4. De-stress and declutter
Our ability to be creative is often hampered by daily stress. In order to be at your creative best you need to have a clear mind. Since lack of money and age are two of the biggest challenges to being creative, they are clearly a matter of stress to most professionals in the region. Another major stress for advertising professionals is longer hours and short deadlines. Doing daily breathing exercises for five minutes, or even writing down all your concerns in a journal, can take away some of your stress and help you come up with great ideas at work.
5. Ideate with confidence
One of the major obstacles to creativity is the fear of having your ideas shot down. Good news is the work environment is changing today as a majority of professionals are encouraged to think of new ideas at the workplace. Don’t be afraid to speak out and express your thoughts. This is especially important in the marketing and advertising industries. If one idea isn’t appreciated now, it can be used as a base for something bigger and better later.
View the infographic here.