I recently finished How To Be Creative: Six Psychological Principles of Creativity by Jeremy Dean, author of PSYBLOG. The content was particularly relevant to me since I rely on creativity for the industry I am in. Communication professionals (such as those in advertising and public relations) are constantly pressed for new ideas and creative content that will engage a target audience. Therefore, it is especially important that we learn how to embrace our inner creativity.
According to Dean, “We are rarely taught about creativity, despite its importance to our lives.” Below is our stab at channeling your inner creativity.
Brainstorm: Have you ever sat around a conference table during a brainstorming session and felt insecure about sharing your ideas with the group? Creativity rule number one is to have no fear. The purpose of a brainstorming session is to throw as many ideas on the table as possible so there are more options. Keep in mind, almost everyone’s ideas will be thrown out as the group narrows down to just one choice – do not feel as if you are the only one whose suggestion did not make the cut.
Take a time-out: Sometimes we need to take a mental time-out come up with new ideas. Take a walk to clear your head or focus on another task for a while. The best ideas come to us when we are not working hard to search for them.
Use imagery: Have you ever heard anyone ask the question, “If your company had a personality, what would it be?” If you visualize the colors, shapes and images that would be associated with your message, then it is easier to find words to match the picture.
When all is said and done, fuse creativity with your business plan. Dean’s book offers six insightful ways to apply creativity. To be brief, he highlights the importance of knowing your creative limitations (what is appropriate for the company message), researching competitor tactics, identifying what appeals to a target audience, knowing your resources (time, money and media channels to implement a creative idea), planning and being open to feedback. And, most importantly – don’t be afraid to display your creative potential. If you adhere to the above process creativity will follow.