One of the easiest ways I’ve found to stimulate creativity on a regular basis is to surround myself with opportunities to play or tinker.
We are animals of efficiency, opting to take the easiest, safer road over the more novel and undoubtedly more challenging one.
So I use small “hacks” in my home and work environments to stimulate creative play. A pen and an always-open notebook sit on my work desk at home. I’ll often have paintbrushes, bright colored paints, jumbo-sized markers, and sheets of paper sitting out on my apartment floor, waiting to be used to create a mess.
Scattered through-out my apartment are ample things I can pick-up and use briefly to explore an idea or quickly change my mode of thinking. A guitar on the couch, an Oculus VR headset near the desk, corks and paperclips in the kitchen, countless pens scattered throughout the apartment, and my iPad and a wireless keyboard on the coffee table, all remind me that I have what I need to explore ideas, to get them out of my head, any time.
Anything you can do to make creative play – the act of exploring ideas in one way or another – more effortless is going to help you not only explore ideas, but overcome fears and doubts around idea exploration in the first place. Essentially: you build creative confidence by encouraging yourself to take small chances on sporadic ideas.
If you don’t have enough fun or inspiring things around you to play with, start small. Carry a pocket notebook and a space pen with you. Both can be bought from Amazon for less than $30 and last for well over a month of daily use.
Surround yourself with things you can explore, play with, and exercise your creativity on. Even the smallest of toys or tools can act as a primer for when you need creativity most.