How to Be Creative – 7 Tips for Boosting Creativity
Although some days it may seem as if your creative juices are flowing more than other days, the truth is, there are practices you can weave into your daily life and learn how to be creative every day.
Known as the kind of people who march to the beat of their own drum, creatives and entrepreneurs often employ similar strategies to achieve success and maintain their creativity.
Here, Deep Patel offers a few insights into the traits of successful entrepreneurs and individuals and how they reinforce their creativity day after day.
How to Be Creative – The Traits of A Successful Individual
The most successful people have a certain traits that are admirable and traits that you may want to adapt into your life in order to help further your career. Here are some of the habits successful individuals have nurtured within themselves:
1. Indulge Your Curiosity
“I’ve found successful people to be incredibly curious,” says Deep. Some of the most successful people are curious by nature – this means they like to explore new concepts and tasks and find new and innovative solutions to a potential problem. Curiosity is the one super power we don’t use often enough even though we all inherently have it. Don’t stifle it. Indulge in asking questions. Chase your curiosity each and every day.
Even if you have a mundane task that you are working on, it is important to find the light in everything you are doing – for Deep that means seeing every problem as a motivator to create products. “I look at companies like jigsaw puzzles. The closer I am to solving a puzzle, the more fueled I become to keep going,” says Deep.
2. Engage Your Listening Skills
“[Successful people are] some of the best listeners,” says Deep. “Rather than talk about themselves, every conversation is filled with questions about what [the other person is] working on. They try to understand every bit of what others are doing,” he says. Tuning into your listening skills is an important part of success and further to the above – to staying curious, too. It’s in those silent moments of listening that some of the best ideas are sparked.
3. Be An Avid Note Taker or Start a Journal
Don’t let all of the benefits of curiosity and great listening skills go to waste. Keep track of what inspires you and takes notes often. According to Deep, this can be as simple as putting a note in your phone when you hear an intriguing idea. However, the creative benefits of journaling can also be profound.
4. Always Express Interest in Others
Maintain a deep interest in the work of others around you. “Show genuine interest in other people and their hard work. Try to understand every bit of what others are doing. Get to the root of the challenges they’re facing and offer insights where you can,” says Deep.
5. Maintain Focus and Push to Meet Deadlines
It’s often not easy to be at your creative best when a deadline is approaching. This is where focus becomes a key component of a successful person. “By being laser-focused on a single achievement, you minimize the number of creative decisions you have to make,” says Deep. “If you take a second to step away and focus, you’ll often realize [the solution] is simpler than it seems, and creative thoughts will follow.”
6. Set Yourself Up to Achieve Early
The start of the day tends to be the hardest for most people – if you are not a morning person, you can get your day started by working on smaller tasks first. “I do the easiest things at the beginning of the day,” says Deep. “I make my bed, get a quick workout in and cook breakfast. That means I’ve achieved three things before I’m out the door which already makes my day feel productive,” he says.
Create a checklist of what’s important to achieve at the start of each day to set yourself up for a sense of accomplishment when check things off. If you knock out easy goals, such as getting in your exercise (at least 20 minutes per day), it puts you on the right track to attain your goals. You should set aside some self-care time throughout the day and sprinkle them in between accomplishing your goals.
“I have four key achievements I want to complete everyday,” says Deep. “Setting realistic, high-priority goals that will lead directly to an achievement, rather than completing tasks for the sake of working hard, is essential for staying productive,” he says.
7. Find Your Tribe and Build Human Connection
If your day-to-day doesn’t put you in direct face-to-face contact with others, it is important to seek out a social group you can chat with. “Entrepreneurship can be lonely,” says Deep. “Even though I work with a handful of clients every week, I’m often spending most of the time doing work on my own,” he says. Plus, social connection can increase creativity and your happiness too.
Deep’s Takeaway Tips on How to Be Creative and Successful
The key to success is being focused on your tasks at hand and ensuring that you are using downtime to reset as needed. “Downtime is a crucial part of my staying productive and happy,” says Deep. “The best part of my downtime, in my mind, is spending time with people who aren’t in your line of work because most of the time they’ll ask questions and will give you useful ideas from an outside perspective. In that sense downtime can be productive,” says Deep.
There will inevitably come the time in your day (or week) when you reach a creative slump. Your brain may seem like it’s not functioning at the level of creativity that you had hoped for. This simply means that you may need some help resetting and getting back on track. Deep himself has experienced creative blocks with everything from writing to doing everyday work.
About Deep Patel
Deep Patel is a serial entrepreneur, marketer and bestselling author of A Paperboy’s Fable: The 11 Principles of Success. The book was dubbed the #1 best business book in 2016 by Success Magazine and named the best book for entrepreneurs in 2016 by Entrepreneur Magazine. Also recognized as a top 25 marketing influencer by Forbes, Patel has worked with VC-backed startups to Fortune 500 companies.