Some professional women, especially those returning to the corporate world are unaware of the creative transferable skills they have. If you have been at home caring for children you probably have lots of experience with creative thinking. Cooking is a creative exercise, especially when not using a recipe, or thinking up ways to make a reluctant child eat. Finding interesting things for your children to do is creative thinking.
Thinking like a child is a great start to developing your creativity further. Imagination and the belief that anything is possible are at the heart of creativity. Combining known ideas and coming up with something completely new and different. There are some great activities you can engage in to give your creativity a boost.
Doodling is a wonderful way to develop creativity. Most professional women have been brought up to believe that doodling is a waste of time and especially that it shows you are not paying attention. This is not true, though if you are working with people that are unaware of that it might not be a good idea to be found doodling during an important meeting. All the ‘great creative minds’ were avid doodlers. DaVinci, Einstein and Picasso among them. Doodling is an activity that uses both sides of the brain and so encourages creativity. Drawing and painting also foster creativity being right-brained exercises.
Day-dreaming is one of the simplest ways to unleash your creative powers. Again as professional women we have been taught that day-dreaming is ‘bad’. Certainly it is not appropriate in certain situations, but letting your mind wander when you have some time alone is a great exercise. Let your imagination run free and enjoy where it takes you.
Do something new, and read something new as often as you can. This adds to your mind’s knowledge base and so gives it more connections to feed on, and so more opportunity for genuine creativity.
Learn to use mind-mapping for creative flow. Not the rigid, computer-generated mind-maps but your own originals. Take a look at Tony Buzan’s website to get a full understanding of the creative power of mind-mapping. It is so much more than brainstorming or organizing.
Read up on some of Edward DeBono’s creative thinking models. They are quite old now but still very effective. Go beyond the ‘hats’ and try out some of his other methods.
Use your intuition, think outside the box, and take risks. One of the major things with creative thinking is to put aside the ‘that’s not possible or wouldn’t work’ voice. Coming up with the idea is the first creative step, you can decide later if it can’t work or find even more creative ways to make it work.
Most professional women are naturally intuitive and naturally creative. We can all use those talents and develop them further in our work situations.