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9 ways to nurture creativity

Creativity is something you can cultivate even if you don't have talent. As Albert Einstein said, "creativity is intelligence having fun". What do you do on a regular basis to create magic?

Have you ever brushed your teeth or cut a bread roll with your non-dominant hand? How about doing mouth and eye stretches in opposite directions while sitting in traffic?

Being creative is not just about singing, dancing, making art. You can be creative in your everyday life without having to practice any one thing.

When you allow yourself to do things differently, you start to see things differently and then your whole world changes. The trick is in the 'doing'...

The neural pathways in your brain grow stronger with repetition. Remember learning to drive, tie your shoe laces, swim? I bet it was sometimes rather frustrating but practice allows you to now do things on auto-pilot. This can sometimes stifle creativity. Your mind will remind you of what you enjoy and do easily rather than want you to struggle with something new. Observe your thinking when you start something new. When thoughts of giving up pop up, tell them to go sit quietly in the corner. They will pop up again but less and less as you master your new normal.

Tips for getting creative:

- Start to use your non-dominant hand more often - try doodling with both hands at the same time too.

- Sit in silence and notice the sounds that are furtherest away from you.

- Learn to say "I love you" in 10 different languages.

- Take a new route around the grocery store.

- Listen to music in mono instead of stereo and notice which ear hears more notes.

- Go on a 'trying on' spree and dress up in clothes you don't normally wear. You don't have to buy, just try.

- Do Cooks Hookups - extend your arms in front of you, cross your left arm over your right, turning your palms to touch each other, then bend your elbows moving your hands down and then inwards up towards your chest while crossing your legs. Hold for a minute or two and then swop over.

- Do cross crawl (touch left hand to right knee and then right hand to left knee while standing) to integrate the left and right sides of your brain.

- Be silly - often! Talk to the birds, dance in the rain, make up picture stories of the clouds, dare to dream...


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