Do you want to become a better problem-solver, innovator and to access more of the creativity within you?
Of course you do…who doesn’t!
The most effective way to enhance your creativity is to get your whole body into the process.
Here are 7 scientifically supported and totally awesome mind-body creativity hacks that involve all parts of you. Some of them might just surprise you…
1. Doodle. Yes, you read that right. Doodling, sketching and letting your pen lead the way is an effective (and fun!) way to open up your creative mind. Join the Doodle Revolution, started by Sunni Brown, who asserts that doodling increases creative insight, because “when the mind starts to engage with visual language, you get neurological access that you don’t have when you’re in a linguistic mode.” She has a great, short Ted talk on this, watch here. To the right is a doodle I did while sitting in jury duty last month…Sunni Brown would be proud.
2. Walk. If you are in need a creative burst of ideas, take a walk! Studies are showing that it doesn’t matter if you walk outside or inside, but that the act of walking for at least 8 minutes consecutively stimulates the creativity areas of the brain. Hard to believe? Check out this cool study.
3. Laugh. Laughter incites lightness of mood and space in the mind, so that you can be more open to new ideas that you might otherwise block out. To problem-solve more effectively, find a way to get yourself laughing…all the way to the “idea bank”! More information on the connection between laughter and creativity can be found in this article.
4. Meditate to create. Mindful meditation quiets the reptilian part of the brain that protects you from danger – (the fight or flight part). This animal area of our brain serves an important role, but it is also the part of the brain that blocks us from our imagination and inventiveness. When we meditate, we calm our central nervous system and we open new pathways beyond the reptilian brain, allowing us to access the depths of our imagination and inspiration. Learn more here.
5. Get your hands involved. Although so few us actually write by hand anymore, authors of The Creativity Cure suggest that the act of having a pen in hand brings the body into the experience, opening up more creativity in the brain. To further this point, they say that producing something by hand pulls information from multiple senses, which is known to stimulate creative thinking, as discussed here. Your options are endless here…cook, draw, knit, make a craft, sculpt with clay (or even silly putty!)…
6. Exercise your eyes. We all know that exercising our bodies has many positive effects on the brain, including increasing creativity…but who knew that exercising the eyes, specifically, could help with innovation?! It’s been asserted that moving the eyes back and forth facilitates interaction between the right and left hemispheres of the brain, which may heighten creative thinking. Hard to believe? Here’s an abstract of the study.
7. Get your Zzz’s. Have you had the experience of going to sleep with a problem on your mind that you just can’t seem to solve…only to wake up in the morning with a simple solution? Sleep stimulates right brain activity, which is responsible for creativity. While we are sleeping, new memories are essentially reformatted which allows us to find new avenues for insight. Even a solid power nap can do the job! Here’s an abstract on the sleep study.
Seven simple hacks. All of which are easy and accessible. Where will you go from here?
Don’t wait! Wake up the creativity that lies dormant within you…
As always, let me know what you try and how it goes. I love to hear from you.
P.S. If you haven’t yet, be sure to take the free 10-question MindBody IQ Quiz to get more clarity on your mind-body connection as well as specific next steps to enhance it!
P.P.S. To continue this conversation and others like it, join other like-spirited people just like you in the private, free Facebook group: the MindBodyWise Living Room.