It’s been said before: creativity is a way of living and working in communication inherently implies a significant aptitude towards creativity. But did you know that our brains are not meant to be creative? Yes, because they’re wired to help us find the best solutions every moment of every day. Their function is to help us make simple, quick choices, to solve difficult situations as effectively as possible by simplifying complexity. That sometimes stifles creativity as our brain tends to stick to what’s known rather than find new, more innovative solutions and/or ideas. Yet, despite our brain's non-propensity for creativity in all its nuances, it is extremely relevant for anyone working in communication, as for any human being, to learn how to train, develop, and apply creativity.
A basic but vital concept that we should also assume when talking about training creativity is that creativity is not a gift. That is important because we can learn how to train and stimulate it. Based on this assumption, we can modulate the ways we interpret and develop it. So, how can we open the doors to more aware, trained and developed creativity?
1. Happiness is the answer
Perhaps obvious but far from trivial, we can say that our mental and physical state affects everything, positively and negatively. When you are happy, steady, and positive you’ll attract good energy, find solutions, make progress with whatever you’re doing. And what are some small/big actions that help you be happy? For instance, dancing, singing, shouting, jumping, doing silly things, exercising…
Scientifically speaking when you dance, or when you sing and shout, when you jump, do silly things and you engage in sport, your brain produces serotonin, dopamine, and oxytocin, so physically you are really fighting stress.
If you deliberately choose to introduce or increase similar behaviors in your daily routine, you will undoubtedly impact on your happiness levels. And the happier you are, the greater your chances of “producing” creativity. So, if you want to increase your creativity levels, try and make some time for these actions during day: they will lead you to positive and optimistic thoughts, and thinking positive increases your resourcefulness.
2. Get out of your comfort zone
Another way to spark creativity (and making great experiences in the process) is to try and change your habits. Break your routine, train to consider things from many perspectives, pay attention to what’s around you and start connecting the dots. Make a conscious effort to find inspiration and beauty everywhere, without fail. Even better if you do this on a regular basis, to keep training your creativity.
3. Work in a team
Another great way to train creativity is working in a team, exchanging views and opinion. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes or be proved wrong. Share your ideas and listen to other people’s. Working in a team gives you the great advantage to share a piece of thinking with other people who can help you fill in the missing piece of the puzzle: this is the quintessence of creation.
All the above suggestions have something in common: training and change. Therefore, I’d like to close this article by suggesting something concrete but hopefully useful for helping you get started on your process of creativity training. Why don’t you immediately challenge yourself by reviewing one or two small elements of your routine? Brush your teeth with your left hand if you usually use your right hand. Start reading the newspaper from the last rather than the first page. Take an object and imagine all the alternative, less common uses you can make with it. And let me know how it goes!