Make Creativity a Habit at Work

Increase your productivity through 10-minutes of creativity.

When we consciously engage in creative activities on a regular basis, it leads to new and fresh ideas, innovative problem solving, and offers welcomed stress relief. That’s why creativity is an essential part of your professional skill set.

It is through the exercise of creative thought and processes that we are able to experiment, play, and develop a creative mindset that leads to more productivity and success at work.

We don’t all have creative work. But we are all human beings with innate creativity and unlimited creative potential. With that in mind, I have curated 10 activities to help challenge the status quo of your work day, so you can start experiencing the benefits of creativity in the workplace.

Doodle. While you’re on the phone, or in meetings — pick up a pen and start doodling. Studies show that rather than distracting you, doodling helps you retain information.

Close your eyes. Take a break from your computer screen and use your other senses to experience the environment around you. Let your mind wander. Exercise your imagination.

Clean your work space. Create a clean canvas to do your work. Clutter weighs on our minds, affecting composure and productivity. Give yourself a blank canvas.

Wake up 10 minutes early. Although you will be tempted to check your email — resist. For these 10 minutes, do nothing but relax with a cup of coffee or tea and enjoy some quiet time. Silence allows room for innovation to tip toe in.

Do something new. Creativity is fueled by new experiences. Trying something new is being creative.

Map out your day. Take a blank piece of paper and start mapping out your day in images and words, like a treasure map. Nothing fancy. This is a way to look at your day in a fun and creative way. Make your day visually fun.

Do the 30 Circle Test. Draw 30 circles on a blank piece of paper. Put your timer on and make as many unique things out of the circles as you can in 3 minutes. Stretch and exercise your creative muscles.(based on the research and techniques of Bob McKim)

Write by hand. And when I say hand, I don’t mean use your fingers to manipulate a keyboard. Use pen and paper. The manual flow of hand writing relaxes the mind. Need something to write about? Pick 5 objects on your desk, and turn those 5 words into a story. Enjoy the flow.

Build something. Pick up those same 5 objects (or new ones) from your desk and build something. Can you make it stand up? Move? How high can you build it? Creativity is a great exercise in problem solving.

What else. Find a single item that you use at work (pen, paper, computer, coffee cup). Place it on the table in front of you and ask yourself, ‘What else could this be used for?’ Write your word in the center of a piece of paper and see if you can fill the entire page with words and images of alternate uses. Wild and crazy ideas are welcomed!

We can all benefit from creativity. Just try adding one of these activities into your day for 10 minutes. Allow yourself to get lost in the process without worrying about the results. Then watch how just a touch of creativity makes your work come alive!