(Time to read this article is about 60 seconds)

To thrive, our business constantly needs new ideas and perspectives. How much time do you set aside for thinking on a regular basis?  Just quietly thinking?  By doing so, we create a ‘space’ for ideas and insights to be born and to grow.  Sadly, our society doesn’t honor and encourage quiet thinking.  We value being ‘busy’…frantically busy. 

Studies show that our ability to think creatively is affected by where we are and what we’re doing.  This is important to know because if you can figure out where you’re most creative, you can spend more time there…and you’ll become a more creative person. 

  1. According to some surveys, the #1 most creative location for many people is sitting on the toilet. (and you thought that was #2)
  2. Number two, in fact, is in the shower or bath.  Does that work for you?  It works for me.  It’s relaxing, warm, safe and comfortable…and the world seems full of possibilities.
     
    A friend of mine who is most creative in the shower bought a waterproof slate and pen from a SCUBA shop and hung it in the shower to capture his ideas.
  1. The next most creative location for many folks is while driving.
  2. Just before falling asleep.
  3. During a boring meeting.
  4. While reading.
  5. During exercise.
  6. Waking up at night is number eight. 
  7. While listening to someone speak at a meeting or conference. 
  8. Number ten is while working manually.  For many of us, manual work is relaxing and that frees up our minds to be creative. That’s the beauty of hobbies and travel.

So, where are you most creative?  Whatever special place you go to or thing you do, whatever music you listen to, or special friends you hang out with; whatever it is that fills your mind with possibilities, do that more often.  Don’t let management and life always be “one damned thing after another”.  Slow down!  Allow yourself time to be curious and creative and you’ll be amazed at what you come up with!

Then, when you come up with great ideas, document them and create a space, a file, for those ideas to live and develop…and to be retrieved. It’s amazing how, when we create a space for ideas to reside and percolate, we become so much more aware and our brain generates so many more ideas to fill that space.

About Donald Cooper

Donald Cooper, MBA, CSP, HoF: Donald speaks and coaches in over 40 industries throughout the world.  He delivers the ‘straight goods’ on how to sell more, manage smarter, grow your bottom line...and have a life!  To chat about ‘possibilities’ for your next business or Industry Association Conference, call me at 416-252-3703 in Toronto, or click here to connect to our ‘Enquiry Page’.  

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