Would you like a raise? Are you worried that your job might go to a robot someday? Do you want to lower your stress level and improve your happiness?
By boosting your creativity, you make yourself more valuable on the job. This is even more important now, since 47% of jobs might be automated within the next 20 years. Creativity also lowers your stress, giving you more energy and making you healthier as well.
Am I telling you that you can actually become more creative? Yes! While you may think that creativity is an innate ability you either do or don't have, research suggests otherwise. We can train our brains to improve in many different ways, including creativity.
Creativity has never been more important than it is at the present moment. We face challenges in commerce, medicine, public policy, ethics, education, and many other fields. Creative people will bring us to a brighter future. Plus, creativity can help individuals who feel "stuck" and less happy than they did in previous years.
Below are five simple things anyone can do to boost creativity. These ideas come from a presentation I give and an online course I teach to help people cultivate their creativity. I can't promise that you'll get a raise, but I know that these tips will lighten your mood and get those creative juices flowing.
1. Read more. Treat yourself to at least 15 minutes of pleasure reading every day. The more we read, the more we learn. The more we learn, the more creative we become. Reading also exercises our imagination and lowers our stress.
2. Laugh! Laughter is great for your health. It's been shown to improve your heart health, immune system, and energy level. Plus, laughter can boost creativity by elevating your dopamine levels and getting your brain into a more relaxed state of being. Check out a funny video on YouTube, read some jokes, or think back to a hilarious memory to get into a humorous mood.
3. Go for a walk. Research shows that walking can make us more creative. Resist the urge to multitask, though. Leave the phone at home or at your desk and just enjoy the opportunity to get some exercise while your brain is making new connections and breakthroughs.
4. Avoid processed foods. Diets rich in processed foods are associated with higher levels of anxiety and depression, and an unhappy mind can't be creative. Focus on eating more fruits and vegetables to make your brain relaxed and ready to create.
5. Listen to music. When we hear music, our brains enter "mind-wandering mode." During this time, it's much easier for us to think critically and creatively. The effect is even stronger if you play a musical instrument. Albert Einstein once said that he was able to do his best thinking after playing his violin for a few minutes.