With multiple clients all wanting the greatest PR strategy and the next big idea, it can be hard to keep the creative juices flowing and come up with amazing ideas on demand. Your best ideas usually happen in strange places, such as in the shower or at the gym, on the tram or bus – often when your mind is elsewhere. If you find your creative batteries running low, here are a few techniques that will help to boost your creative thinking:
Keep an ideas book
I have a notebook where I jot ideas that come to me in daydreams. If I see an interesting photo, article or quote, I will clip it and include it in the notebook or place into an ideas file that I keep on my desktop. So whether you love pen and paper or prefer a note-taking app – when inspiration strikes, record it!
Read something totally different
Too often in our profession, we find ourselves reading the same newspapers, trade publications, blogs and twitter feeds. Why not try picking up a murder mystery (I love Agatha Christie), a cookbook, something from your childhood? Reading something different may inspire you or teach you something you didn’t know anything about.
Surround yourself with creative people
At Thrive, I am lucky be surrounded by a great team of colleagues, people that you can always bounce ideas off . The creative energy of those around you can fuel the atmosphere and produce a conducive environment for ideas to flow.
Step away from your computer and explore
There is a big wide world out there, so go forth and explore. Take a ramble around the city or town you live in, visit a gallery, a show or a concert. And, if money allows, visit a new region or country. Exploring and travel opens you up to experience sights and sounds that will expand your horizon and stimulate your imagination.
Get motivation in the mail, visit a bookstore or join the library
Subscribe to magazines in your industry and other magazines that inspire you. They are full of ideas, up-to-the-minute information and the latest trends and styles. Every month, I visit a bookstore and browse the shelves for inspiration or, if budget is a problem, you can join your local library.
Go for a run, take a walk, get some fresh air or join an exercise class. Exercise is not only great for health and well-being, it also helps you to de-stress and boost creativity.
Learn from your peers
We work in an industry that is full of creativity, and everyday we see campaigns launching that are brilliant and out of the box. Rather than beating yourself up about why you didn’t think of that first, look at these campaigns and learn from them. I have a few sites that I go to on a daily and weekly basis, from around the world, for inspiration:
Finally, listen to your inner child
Always be curious, daydream, let your imagination run wild and always ask why and how. Take some risks and have some fun. Being creative, after all, is about the use of imagination or original ideas to create something.