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7 Basic Rules Of Creativity You Should Know

7 Basic Rules Of Creativity You Should Know

If you’re want to live the creative life, you need to know the rules of the game. There are 7 basic rules of creativity that every creator should know to flourish.  These rules of creativity are the culmination of years of experience as a creator and I know that if you follow them they will make a big difference in your creative life every day.

1. Create Something Every Single Day

Persistence is key when it comes to creativity. Every day you create, you are exercising your creative muscles and becoming bigger, better and more confident with what you do. You’re also keeping the momentum going which is essential to living the creative life. Create something every single day and you’ll quickly see your creativity flourish.

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2. Always Have Your Basic Tools at Hand

Always have your most basic creative tools at hand and you’ll never be stuck with an idea and no way to express it. Your most basic tools might be as simple as a sketchbook and pencil, or as complex as an entire creativity on-the-go kit complete with all the tools you need to create on the spot wherever you are. Whatever it is, make sure you have it on hand for when inspiration strikes.

3. Believe In Your Creativity

To live the creative life you need to believe in your abilities and set out to express them creatively every single day. Without the belief, staying focused and creatively productive can be tough! Importantly, you need to believe in your creativity before anyone else can, so if you’re ready to make your mark, start believing in your own creativity today.

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4. Cultivate a Creativity Habit

Forming a creativity habit is essential to living a creative life. Set aside as little as 30 minutes a day, and choose a set time and place to make it happen. Stick to it and show up to create every day, even when you’re feeling uninspired and out of ideas. Of course you can go on and create for much longer than your set time each day but it’s a minimum and a start to get you going. You’ll be surprised at the difference it will make to your creative output over the course of a week, month and year!

5. Limit Your Options to Focus In

As a creator, you instinctively think that having options would a great thing but it can actually make the creative process much harder. Give yourself some self imposed boundaries to create within such as specific creative medium, theme or a time limit. Limiting your options by setting these rules of creativity will help you focus in and spark unique ideas you never would have thought of before to create something truly amazing.

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6. Embrace Your ‘Bad’ Ideas

Embrace all your ideas, both ‘good’ and ‘bad’, and give them a go before dismissing them. It’s easy to make a judgement on a half formed idea but until you have further developed it, your assessment of it as a ‘bad’ idea is just a hunch. Some initially bad ideas can form into something amazing so give them a fair go, to form into something wonderful first.

7. Join a Creative Community

There’s nothing more powerful than joining a creative community. Whether it’s online or in your local area, joining together with other creative people and sharing your experiences, challenges and successes is a powerful way to propel yourself to living a fulfilling creative life every single day. Your creative community will be there to support you through both good and bad and cheer you all the way. Being part of a creative community is one of the most crucial rules of creativity because it will help you keep going even when things get tough.

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You might also like: 10 Things You Probably Do That Block Your Creativity

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Last Updated on September 20, 2018

8 Ways to Train Your Brain to Learn Faster and Remember More

8 Ways to Train Your Brain to Learn Faster and Remember More

You go to the gym to train your muscles. You run outside or go for hikes to train your endurance. Or, maybe you do neither of those, but still wish you exercised more.

Well, here is how to train one of the most important parts of your body: your brain.

When you train your brain, you will:

  • Avoid embarrassing situations. You remember his face, but what was his name?
  • Be a faster learner in all sorts of different skills. No problem for you to pick up a new language or new management skill.
  • Avoid diseases that hit as you get older. Alzheimer’s will not be affecting you.

So how to train your brain and improve your cognitive skills?

1. Work your memory

Twyla Tharp, a NYC-based renowned choreographer has come up with the following memory workout:

When she watches one of her performances, she tries to remember the first twelve to fourteen corrections she wants to discuss with her cast without writing them down.

If you think this is anything less than a feat, then think again. In her book The Creative Habit she says that most people cannot remember more than three.

The practice of both remembering events or things and then discussing them with others has actually been supported by brain fitness studies.

Memory activities that engage all levels of brain operation—receiving, remembering and thinking—help to improve the function of the brain.

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Now, you may not have dancers to correct, but you may be required to give feedback on a presentation, or your friends may ask you what interesting things you saw at the museum. These are great opportunities to practically train your brain by flexing your memory muscles.

What is the simplest way to help yourself remember what you see? Repetition.

For example, say you just met someone new:

“Hi, my name is George”

Don’t just respond with, “Nice to meet you”. Instead, say, “Nice to meet you George.”

Got it? Good.

2. Do something different repeatedly

By actually doing something new over and over again, your brain wires new pathways that help you do this new thing better and faster.

Think back to when you were three years old. You surely were strong enough to hold a knife and a fork just fine. Yet, when you were eating all by yourself, you were creating a mess.

It was not a matter of strength, you see. It was a matter of cultivating more and better neural pathways that would help you eat by yourself just like an adult does.

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And guess what? With enough repetition you made that happen!

But how does this apply to your life right now?

Say you are a procrastinator. The more you don’t procrastinate, the more you teach your brain not to wait for the last minute to make things happen.

Now, you might be thinking “Duh, if only not procrastinating could be that easy!”

Well, it can be. By doing something really small, that you wouldn’t normally do, but is in the direction of getting that task done, you will start creating those new precious neural pathways.

So if you have been postponing organizing your desk, just take one paper and put in its right place. Or, you can go even smaller. Look at one piece of paper and decide where to put it: Trash? Right cabinet? Another room? Give it to someone?

You don’t actually need to clean up that paper; you only need to decide what you need to do with it.

That’s how small you can start. And yet, those neural pathways are still being built. Gradually, you will transform yourself from a procrastinator to an in-the-moment action taker.

3. Learn something new

It might sound obvious, but the more you use your brain, the better its going to perform for you.

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For example, learning a new instrument improves your skill of translating something you see (sheet music) to something you actually do (playing the instrument).

Learning a new language exposes your brain to a different way of thinking, a different way of expressing yourself.

You can even literally take it a step further, and learn how to dance. Studies indicate that learning to dance helps seniors avoid Alzheimer’s. Not bad, huh?

4. Follow a brain training program

The Internet world can help you improve your brain function while lazily sitting on your couch. A clinically proven program like BrainHQ can help you improve your memory, or think faster, by just following their brain training exercises.

5. Work your body

You knew this one was coming didn’t you? Yes indeed, exercise does not just work your body; it also improves the fitness of your brain.

Even briefly exercising for 20 minutes facilitates information processing and memory functions. But it’s not just that–exercise actually helps your brain create those new neural connections faster. You will learn faster, your alertness level will increase, and you get all that by moving your body.

Now, if you are not already a regular exerciser, and already feel guilty that you are not helping your brain by exercising more, try a brain training exercise program like Exercise Bliss.

Remember, just like we discussed in #2, by training your brain to do something new repeatedly, you are actually changing yourself permanently.

6. Spend time with your loved ones

If you want optimal cognitive abilities, then you’ve got to have meaningful relationships in your life.  Talking with others and engaging with your loved ones helps you think more clearly, and it can also lift your mood.

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If you are an extrovert, this holds even more weight for you. At a class at Stanford University, I learned that extroverts actually use talking to other people as a way to understand and process their own thoughts.

I remember that the teacher told us that after a personality test said she was an extrovert, she was surprised. She had always thought of herself as an introvert. But then, she realized how much talking to others helped her frame her own thoughts, so she accepted her new-found status as an extrovert.

7. Avoid crossword puzzles

Many of us, when we think of brain fitness, think of crossword puzzles. And it’s true–crossword puzzles do improve our fluency, yet studies show they are not enough by themselves.

Are they fun? Yes. Do they sharpen your brain? Not really.

Of course, if you are doing this for fun, then by all means go ahead. If you are doing it for brain fitness, then you might want to choose another activity

8. Eat right – and make sure dark chocolate is included

Foods like fish, fruits, and vegetables help your brain perform optimally. Yet, you might not know that dark chocolate gives your brain a good boost as well.

When you eat chocolate, your brain produces dopamine. And dopamine helps you learn faster and remember better. Not to mention, chocolate contains flavonols, antioxidants, which also improve your brain functions.

So next time you have something difficult to do, make sure you grab a bite or two of dark chocolate!

The bottom line

Now that you know how to train your brain, it’s actually time to start doing.

Don’t just consume this content and then go on with your life as if nothing has changed. Put this knowledge into action and become smarter than ever!

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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