Take time out to get inspired by others

Written by Ed Beckmann Thursday, 1 December 2011 01:09

Take time to be inspired

As I was scanning through my newsletters and I came across the story of Pavegen founder Laurence Kemball-Cook. The story (there’s a link below to follow after you have read this) interested me because I like technology, new ideas and the environment. It reminded me to pop down a few hints about making time to be creative.

Developing your creativity

It might sound strange that you can ‘learn’ to be creative, but the fact is that a lot of education and advice is focussed on not being creative. So in a way we have to un-learn not being creative. Here are a few tips:

Create a creative environment

Take a few moments to think of the last time that you were really bursting with ideas. As you do this, notice a few things about the environment you are in. Are you alone or with others? What time of day is it? Where are you? What is the temperature like? Are there any particular sounds that you are aware of? Is there anything that you would like to alter, which would make the situation even better for you? Or anything that you would prefer to be removed or changed?

Now, returning to the article here, make a few notes about the situation you have just thought about. This could be the blueprint for letting your ideas flow – so make every effort to re-create those conditions when you next want to come up with ideas.

Are you a builder or a starter?

It does not matter whether an idea is completely original or a good application for an existing concept. So if you feel that you are good at building on suggestions then find a source of items to build on. This source can be a news feed, catalogue or a wander through town.

If you tend to have original thoughts that do not stem from anything else, then make a note of them and maybe work with a ‘builder’ who can take these concepts and suggest ways in which they could come to life.

Assessing new ideas

I have a separate exercise that deals with this, but the main point is to make the best of a creative mood and just use it to bring a number of ideas to light and to describe their potential. It is well known that if you immediately assess an idea it can completely ‘flatten’ your mood – I am sure that you can remember a time when that happened!

Make notes, then come back another time (even if it is late the same day).

Keep it Regular and Enjoyable

I have never yet met anyone who is better at having ideas when they are unhappy. So as you note the main thrust of an idea (or maybe its applications) and smile at some of the quirks, use that as a springboard to leap straight over the practicalities and on to the next idea. ┬áThe moment the ‘creative’ sense begins to fade, do something about it. And if that time is over, resist the temptation to force it.

You will find that with a little practice you can regularly find the creative state of mind without it feeling forced.

Absorb inspiration

OK, I wont delay your creative mood much longer – make a note of people, websites or places where you can absorb the inspiring mood, then use that mood to go over the steps above. For me, the article in the link below was the trigger to remind me what I know about getting creative and to write this post.

Have fun!

Now read about Pavegen here