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Creativity Isn’t A Talent. You Can Actually Gain It By Doing These 3 Things Daily

Creativity Isn’t A Talent. You Can Actually Gain It By Doing These 3 Things Daily
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Do you aspire to live a creative life but are not sure where to begin?

It’s a common problem. We look at famous actors, authors and musicians and think: how lucky they are to be creative, passionate – and hugely successful!

Just remember though that many of these successful, creative people were just like you once. They had dreams. They had goals. But they also struggled with confidence issues and creative blocks.

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If you’re willing to commit to reaching your creative pinnacle, then read on.

1. Combine ideas to lift you out of a rut

Being creative does not mean you have to reinvent the wheel (although that would be an impressive start!). Often, the secret is to take two existing ideas and combine them to create something new.

As an example, think of the traditional alarm clock. Clearly, someone a long time ago came up with the idea of fusing together a clock and a bell. An incredibly simple idea, but one that has stood the test of time (pun intended!).

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Now, over to you… what ideas can you combine to create something useful and unique?

2. Throw away self-censorship to unleash your creativity

To be truly creative, you’ll need to strip away years of self-censorship that culture and society have taught you.

You’ve probably heard people say that they used to be creative when they were young. This was a time when their minds were most likely free from career, relationship and financial worries. Life was fun, dynamic and full of opportunities to be creative. Unfortunately, for most of us, years of working in a dreary 9-5 environment has crushed our dreams – and drowned our inspirations. Creativity has been exchanged for conformity. (Not good!)

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You must break free from self-censorship to restore your authentic, creative self. Dig deep below your conditioned mind, and discover your powerful, creative subconscious mind. If you can tap into this mind, creative ideas are guaranteed to begin flowing again.

3. Be ready to capture your best ideas

Once you have opened the gates to creativity, you’ll be shocked at how many ideas you have every single day. There’s one problem with this: if you don’t capture the ideas instantly – you’ll be likely to lose them.

The secret here is to write down or sketch any promising ideas that come into your mind. You must do this immediately, otherwise they may evaporate from your mind and be lost forever. (You’ve probably experienced this many times before.)

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If you don’t already have a way of capturing ideas, then find a method that will allow you to do so. Highly-creative people frequently carry notepads, cameras and portable audio recording equipment so that they can catch their ideas the moment they have them. At the very least, make a habit of noting down your ideas and thoughts into your phone or tablet.

“Creativity takes courage.” -Henri Matisse

If you’re lacking in confidence, then you’ll be unlikely to believe that you have the creativity and talent to succeed in life. However, as we’ve seen above, it doesn’t have to be this way.

Be bold, be bright, and let your creative juices flow. And most importantly – start creating!

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As soon as you have a good idea, why not find ways to implement it straightaway? By doing this, you’ll defeat the “dream-killer” known as procrastination. You’ll also find yourself with unexpected momentum in life. And this will create a cycle for you: ideas will come… you’ll apply them… more ideas will come. Try it and see for yourself.

Creativity is not just for child prodigies and musical geniuses. It’s also for you. Take the tips above, let them free your mind  – and unleash the best ideas of your life.

More by this author

Craig J Todd

UK Writer who loves to use the power of words to inspire and motivate.

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Last Updated on July 21, 2021

The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)

The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)
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No matter how well you set up your todo list and calendar, you aren’t going to get things done unless you have a reliable way of reminding yourself to actually do them.

Anyone who’s spent an hour writing up the perfect grocery list only to realize at the store that they forgot to bring the list understands the importance of reminders.

Reminders of some sort or another are what turn a collection of paper goods or web services into what David Allen calls a “trusted system.”[1]

A lot of people resist getting better organized. No matter what kind of chaotic mess, their lives are on a day-to-day basis because they know themselves well enough to know that there’s after all that work they’ll probably forget to take their lists with them when it matters most.

Fortunately, there are ways to make sure we remember to check our lists — and to remember to do the things we need to do, whether they’re on a list or not.

In most cases, we need a lot of pushing at first, for example by making a reminder, but eventually we build up enough momentum that doing what needs doing becomes a habit — not an exception.

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From Creating Reminders to Building Habits

A habit is any act we engage in automatically without thinking about it.

For example, when you brush your teeth, you don’t have to think about every single step from start to finish; once you stagger up to the sink, habit takes over (and, really, habit got you to the sink in the first place) and you find yourself putting toothpaste on your toothbrush, putting the toothbrush in your mouth (and never your ear!), spitting, rinsing, and so on without any conscious effort at all.

This is a good thing because if you’re anything like me, you’re not even capable of conscious thought when you’re brushing your teeth.

The good news is you already have a whole set of productivity habits you’ve built up over the course of your life. The bad news is, a lot of them aren’t very good habits.

That quick game Frogger to “loosen you up” before you get working, that always ends up being 6 hours of Frogger –– that’s a habit. And as you know, habits like that can be hard to break — which is one of the reasons why habits are so important in the first place.

Once you’ve replaced an unproductive habit with a more productive one, the new habit will be just as hard to break as the old one was. Getting there, though, can be a chore!

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The old saw about anything you do for 21 days becoming a habit has been pretty much discredited, but there is a kernel of truth there — anything you do long enough becomes an ingrained behavior, a habit. Some people pick up habits quickly, others over a longer time span, but eventually, the behaviors become automatic.

Building productive habits, then, is a matter of repeating a desired behavior over a long enough period of time that you start doing it without thinking.

But how do you remember to do that? And what about the things that don’t need to be habits — the one-off events, like taking your paycheck stubs to your mortgage banker or making a particular phone call?

The trick to reminding yourself often enough for something to become a habit, or just that one time that you need to do something, is to interrupt yourself in some way in a way that triggers the desired behavior.

The Wonderful Thing About Triggers — Reminders

A trigger is anything that you put “in your way” to remind you to do something. The best triggers are related in some way to the behavior you want to produce.

For instance, if you want to remember to take something to work that you wouldn’t normally take, you might place it in front of the door so you have to pick it up to get out of your house.

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But anything that catches your attention and reminds you to do something can be a trigger. An alarm clock or kitchen timer is a perfect example — when the bell rings, you know to wake up or take the quiche out of the oven. (Hopefully you remember which trigger goes with which behavior!)

If you want to instill a habit, the thing to do is to place a trigger in your path to remind you to do whatever it is you’re trying to make into a habit — and keep it there until you realize that you’ve already done the thing it’s supposed to remind you of.

For instance, a post-it saying “count your calories” placed on the refrigerator door (or maybe on your favorite sugary snack itself)  can help you remember that you’re supposed to be cutting back — until one day you realize that you don’t need to be reminded anymore.

These triggers all require a lot of forethought, though — you have to remember that you need to remember something in the first place.

For a lot of tasks, the best reminder is one that’s completely automated — you set it up and then forget about it, trusting the trigger to pop up when you need it.

How to Make a Reminder Works for You

Computers and ubiquity of mobile Internet-connected devices make it possible to set up automatic triggers for just about anything.

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Desktop software like Outlook will pop up reminders on your desktop screen, and most online services go an extra step and send reminders via email or SMS text message — just the thing to keep you on track. Sandy, for example, just does automatic reminders.

Automated reminders can help you build habits — but it can also help you remember things that are too important to be trusted even to habit. Diabetics who need to take their insulin, HIV patients whose medication must be taken at an exact time in a precise order, phone calls that have to be made exactly on time, and other crucial events require triggers even when the habit is already in place.

My advice is to set reminders for just about everything — have them sent to your mobile phone in some way (either through a built-in calendar or an online service that sends updates) so you never have to think about it — and never have to worry about forgetting.

Your weekly review is a good time to enter new reminders for the coming weeks or months. I simply don’t want to think about what I’m supposed to be doing; I want to be reminded so I can think just about actually doing it.

I tend to use my calendar for reminders, mostly, though I do like Sandy quite a bit.

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Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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Reference

[1] Getting Things Done: Trusted System

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