It’s every creative professional’s worst nightmare. You’re stuck staring at a blank page for what seems like hours, feeling as though all of your great ideas have suddenly run out. It’s unfortunate, but it happens to the best of us. Luckily, there are some proven ways you can give your creativity a boost.
1. Get Walking
A study by Stanford found that walking helps increase creativity, both during the act and shortly afterward. Research also revealed that when it came to getting creative juices flowing, the environment in which participants walked didn’t matter. So whether you take a turn around your living room or a stroll through your neighborhood, a good, old-fashioned walk can do wonders for getting you out of a creative rut.
2. Surround Yourself With Ambient Noise
Research has found that ambient noise, like the noise found in a coworking space, is the best noise level for creative thinking. A moderate level of ambient noise gave study participants a creative boost, while a higher level actually had a negative effect on creativity. According to the study, ambient noise levels “[increase] processing difficulty, inducing higher construal level[s] and thus promoting abstract processing, which subsequently leads to higher creativity.” In layman’s terms, ambient noise activates the part of our brain that leads to more creative thinking.
3. Embrace the Mess
Maybe Ms. Frizzle was onto something when she said, “Take chances, make mistakes, and get messy!” Studies show that a disordered environment can ignite creative sparks. Participants in a study were separated into a neat room and a messy room and then asked to come up with interesting uses for a ping-pong ball. An independent panel found the ideas of the participants from the messy room to be more creative than those of the participants from the neat room. So what does that mean for you? Maybe it’s time to embrace the clutter on your desk.
What’s your favorite way to get out of a creative rut? Share in the comments!