Ways to Stir up Your Creativity

Creativity is a skill that’s essential when it comes to finding solutions to complex problems, producing new ideas, and creating innovative products/services. Sometimes you may find yourself finding inspiration and developing new ideas out of thin air. Other times, not so much. If you’re looking for effective ways to stir up your creativity or imagination, here’s some things you can try.

Ways to Stir up your Creativity - Image by Joyann Agbulos
Image on wall by Joyann Agbulos

Unlock your creativity by exploring new experiences

Exposing yourself to new experiences is one of the best ways to stir up your creativity. Travel, learn something that you’ve put off for a while, or attempt to create something outside of your comfort zone. Trying new and unfamiliar things helps stimulate your mind. It allows parts of your brain to connect the dots to things that it otherwise wouldn’t. Doing this helps you think “outside the box” and overcome creative blocks that you’re experiencing.

Collaborate with other creatives

Another effective way to stir up your creativity is by collaborating with others. This could be a friend, coworker, or another creative in your field. Working with other people and bouncing off ideas to one another can open your mind to fresh ideas and solutions. You can also find others outside your industry to share perspectives or receive feedback. This can be very beneficial when it comes to refining ideas and coming up with new solution to problems.

If you’re finding it difficult to find others to collaborate with, join a group or community like Hawaii Entrepreneurs or Fstoppers. You can even attend networking events, or sign up on Meetup.com to make new connections. By collaborating with others you can leverage off their knowledge and creativity and fuel your own ideas.

Take breaks to stir up your creativity.

One of the best ways that I found to stir up my own creativity was to take breaks. Feel burnt out? Bored? Or tired of doing repetitive tasks? Take a break! Give your brain a chance to rest and recharge. This will help you return to your work with fresh perspectives and new ideas. Taking breaks are as easy as taking a brisk walk, getting in some exercise, meditating, or my favorite, taking a nap.

By taking a break, you’ll reenergize yourself, prevent burnout and allow you to produce ideas more easily and effortlessly. Check out this article for more on the benefits of taking breaks and how it actually helps with your creativity.

Express your thoughts and ideas in a journal

Expressing your thoughts and ideas in a journal is another effective way to stir up your creativity. Getting things out of your head and writing it down gives you a chance to reflect on them. This give you time to explore things further and can also help you refine existing ideas or reflect on new ones.

Here are some things you can use to can stir up your creativity through journaling:

  1. Notebooks or Notepads
  2. Digital Journaling Apps
  3. Voice Memos (ie. Phone app or Digital Voice Recorder)
  4. Word Processing Software (ie. Microsoft Word, Apple Pages)
  5. Napkins (This is very helpful when things pop-up randomly)

When you capture your thoughts and ideas in a journal, you give yourself references in times you need inspiration the most.

Dedicate time for brainstorming sessions

Brainstorming sessions provide you many ways to stir up your creativity. A brainstorming session can start off with anything. It can be a thought, idea , or problem. Just write it or type it down. From there, jot down anything that comes to mind. Do this until you run out of things to write down. Easy right?

When you give yourself permission to engage in brainstorming sessions, you are free from judgment. Both from yourself and from others. You can use this time to think freely and explore anything and everything that comes to mind. There’s no right or wrong way. The whole point is to just do it autonomously. Brainstorming can come in many different forms like group meetings, online forums, or alone. Like journaling, brainstorming can be an effective way for referencing ideas and coming up with creative solutions to virtually anything.

Seek out inspiration for creativity

I’ll keep this section short and sweet because I feel that seeking inspiration can sometimes lead to negativity. This is especially true to those that are easily prone to comparing themselves to others.

Some ways to seek inspiration can be through books, movies, music, or the works of other artists or professionals. Use the works of others in a way to source ideas, but not to compare yourself or your works to theirs.

Ways to stir up your creativity with books
Photo by Raymond Enriquez Photography

Embrace failure to stir up your creativity

The thought of failing can play a huge factor when it comes to wanting to succeed in anything in life. When you fail at things in life, you should always interpret it as a learning experience. Reflect on it and look for reasons to help you improve when you find yourself back in the same situation. Stay positive, realize that you’re only human and sometimes things are just not meant to be.

By embracing failures with a positive mindset, you can learn from your mistakes. It’ll also help you overcome fears and anxieties that often hold you back in terms of your own creativity.

Embracing failure be as simple as trying out new ideas that might not work out, taking on challenging projects, or walking into a gallery with hopes they’ll accept in representing you. When you allow yourself to embrace failures, you allow yourself to develop resilience and comfort in the discomfort. All of which are important qualities for being creative.

Create a space that allows you to be creative

Creating a space that allows you to be creative can optimize your mental and emotional state and help you generate new ideas and solutions. Surround your environment with things you love, things you’ve created, or things that inspire you. Declutter your space or use lighting and color to enhance your mood. If you flow better with music blasted on high, use that too. Whatever thing that keeps your creative mojo flowing, surround yourself with it when you want to get creative. If you want to stimulate your senses, stay calm or focused, keep things in your space that encourages you to do so.

Use creativity techniques

My last advice when it comes to finding ways to stir up your creativity is by using creative techniques. This could be very helpful for those that love to stay organized want something to reference back to when the time is needed.

Here are some of the creativity techniques you can use to help generate new ideas :

  • Mind Mapping – Creating a visual map of ideas and connections
  • Lateral Thinking – Approaching problems from unconventional angles
  • Brainstorming – Freely jotting thoughts & ideas
  • S.C.A.M.P.E.R. (Substitute, Combine, Amplify, Modify, Put to another use, Elminate, Rearrange) – This technique entails questioning and modifying ideas that already exist.

If you’re looking for ways to train your mind to think more creatively, or generate new ideas more effortlessly, give these techniques a try. You’ll be surprise what you’ll come up with.

Closing Thoughts

There will always come a time when you find yourself standing in front of a wall when it comes to finding a solution to a problem. Whether it’s for a project, personal reasons, or a collaborative endeavor, creative blocks are an inevitable thing we must learn endure and overcome. I’m here to reassure you that it isn’t as bad as it seems. That there are methods out there to help stir up your creativity and ways that can help you finally reach the answers you’ve been waiting for. All in all, creativity does play a huge factor when it comes to developing innovative solutions and producing new ideas.

Explore new things, experience new places, find solutions from others people by collaborating, take breaks and indulge yourself with things that inspire you and challenge you to think differently. Remember that creativity is a muscle and with practice and persistence, you can build that muscle to help tackle any problem that comes your way.

Creative image 'Under the starry Skies' by Hawaii Photographer Raymond Enriquez
‘Under the Starry Skies’ by Raymond Enriquez Photography


If you have any questions or comments on this article, feel free to reach out to me info@raymondenriquez.com 🙂

Invest in Limited-Edition Hawaii Nature Photography Prints by Honolulu Photographer Raymond Enriquez.