Open and Nurture Your Imagination
Did you ever imagine there were monsters under your bed? Creatures in your closet? Fairies in the forest?
Using your imagination is something most of us associate with being a little kid. And, when we hit our teens, we leave it behind forever.
That’s no way to live!
Your imagination can be an incredibly valuable source of creativity. When you use it properly, your imagination can hold the key to building new dreams and shaping your future.
As Albert Einstein said, “Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited, whereas imagination embraces the entire world, stimulating progress, giving birth to evolution.”
So, how can you use your imagination to stimulate progress, grow your business and accomplish more in your life?
The first step is ‘unblock’ yourself… which begins with this simple strategy.
You see, when you allow your imagination to play a part in your life, you’ll open up a whole new world of ideas and opportunities.
If you’ve been running your business the same way for some time, you’re probably used to sticking to the rules. You probably dismiss creative ventures as frivolous; something you don’t have time for.
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You probably also think to yourself, “I’m a business person, not a creative person. Creativity is for artists.”
You couldn’t be more wrong.
As Einstein believed, imagination is more important than knowledge. Imagination is unlimited. Knowledge, on the other hand, is reined in by the black and white.
Cultivate your imagination and you’ll cultivate ideas that are novel, original, unexpected and better than anyone else’s.
The first hurdle to overcome, of course, is being creatively blocked. And that begins here.
Here are five ways to open and nurture your imagination. Just see if these little tricks don’t ignite your creativity and enhance your life!
- Read every day.
It doesn’t matter when or where you do it, but try to read every day.
Reading isn’t just for ‘bookworms’ or geeks. It’s a valuable means of fuelling your imagination and stimulating your brain. You’ll find yourself coming up with new ideas for your business, your marketing campaigns or even your own development.
The simple act of picking up a book or newspaper and reading for just 15 minutes can be enough to ‘wake up’ your brain cells. When you make reading a daily habit, you’ll be promoting the growth of new connections between brain cells (called synapses) and – in many ways – making yourself smarter.
Reading can change your perspective on life and how you see the world.
Some people might like to read in bed at night before they go to sleep, while others might do it on the train to work each morning. Figure out how and where works for you, and get your nose in a book.
- Write stuff down.
Journalling isn’t just for kids or wannabe novelists. It’s a powerful tool that, like reading, can stimulate your brain in ways you never knew possible.
Carry a notebook or journal with you everywhere you go, and note down thoughts as they come to do. Make a habit of going to a cafe or library and just writing whatever comes into your head. Don’t try to be perfect or clever – just write.
Journaling isn’t a diary. Nor is it writing a letter to yourself at the end of the day or noting down what you did. Journaling should be a means of extracting the thoughts, experiences and reflections in your head, and writing them down.
If you do your writing in the morning, you’ll give yourself a wonderful opportunity to clear your mind of any frustrations and start the day anew. Your own words can be the beginning of important changes in your life – when you let them flow.
- Watch more movies.
We usually think of watching movies as a leisure activity, but it really depends on what you’re watching.
A movie can be educational, motivating and thought-provoking. It can open your mind to new ideas and concepts, and even teach you things about people or parts of the world you hadn’t thought much about before.
Movies also provide fantastic stimulation for your brain. Music, color, action, emotion – it’s all there. These things can serve as excellent catalysts for ideas about your business and life.
Best of all, you’ll be enjoying yourself!
Do some research and find out what movies are particularly renowned as inspirational or enlightening. Talk to your friends about movies they’ve seen, or join a forum. This alone could help you to meet other movie buffs (or entrepreneurs!) and expand your creative intellect even further.
- Embrace your inner artist.
So, you can’t draw? It doesn’t matter. Art has no prerequisites: anyone and everyone can enjoy it or create it.
Art has many, many forms: painting, sculpture, literature, architecture, music, dance, theater, photography and films. Try every kind of medium to see what appeals to you most. It doesn’t matter what materials you use: paints, crayons, plaster, play-dough. Use your imagination!
There are no rules in art. All you have to do is jump into the creative process and let things happen. It’s kind of like going to a new restaurant where you’ve never tried the food before. You won’t know which dishes you’ll love until you try them.
You’ll find loads of online tutorials online that can help you draw a person or paint a sunset, or sculpt a pair of angel’s wings. Of course, there’s no tutorial on finding your own style as an artist. THat’s something you’ll have to figure out yourself.
Remember: art is more than fingerpainting. It can be anything that’s creative.
Your artistic style is totally unique to you. And, when you allow yourself to unleash that inner Picasso, you could open up a whole new outlet of your imagination.
- Become a daydreamer.
Again, this one isn’t just for the young! Daydreaming is one of the greatest means of escapism, and nearly everyone could benefit from making it a part of their daily lives.
When you allow yourself to daydream, you open the floodgates to untapped imagination. All the most important artists, creators and leaders throughout history have been daydreamers.
There’s no right or wrong for daydreaming. Simply take yourself out of the present moment and let your mind wander. Transport yourself to another time, place or being – just for a little while.
Of course, you can’t spend half your day in a dream: you’d never get anything done! Use your daydreaming to take breaks throughout the day. When you want to relax for a few moments and escape the madness around you, a short trip into a daydream can work wonders.
As adults, we often resign ourselves to ‘being an adult’ about everything. We don’t allow ourselves any time for daydreaming because we think of it as childish. But if you just give it a try, you’ll realize how useful your imagination can be for coming up with new ideas and ventures.
Business thrives on new ideas. So does your brain. When you daydream, your work life, personal life and everything else that matters to you will blossom.
And isn’t that what you want?
So, take some time out from being a serious, workaholic adult and let your mind drift away for a little. Take a trip back to your childhood and give your imagination free reign.
Dreams are free – and daydreaming could be the start of something bigger than you ever imagined.