Have lockdown restrictions been getting to you recently? If you clicked on this article, then I reckon it is safe to assume the answer to that question is ‘duh!’. Well, I think the overall voice of the world displays that you are not alone on this. Being stuck inside for over a year now has without a doubt done its damage to each of us in one way or another.
When it comes to creativity, the lockdown has definitely been the source of many creative droughts, specifically. That is why I am going to share 6 ways to boost creativity, even during lockdown!
6 Ways to Boost Creativity:
I have collected my most effective tips that have been helping me stay creative and, well…. Helping me not go totally insane! Here they are.
1. Stay active!
When I say stay active, I do not mean you have to do strenuous exercises for hours on end every day. If you know me, then you know that is not what I would do or suggest! Instead, I mean make sure that you keep moving! Most of us can agree that lockdown has involved a lot of sitting…
If you find yourself sitting/laying down for most of your days spent locked indoors, then get up every once in a while and move! This could mean literally walking around your apartment for 5 minutes every hour or doing some stretches every hour to ensure your body is not stationary for too long. This movement doesn’t have to be intensive. Studies show that making sure you incorporate movement every hour increases longevity, brain function, blood flow, and so much more! In return, this will increase your creativity.
2. Brain Training
While using physical exercises to boost creativity is helpful, so is using mental exercises to boost creativity! Just like your other muscles, your brain also needs to work as well. Not exercising your brains abilities and functions is a huge cause for low levels of creativity.
When it comes to being creative, your brain may be the most important factor! Brain training may sound boring on the surface, however, there are plenty of fun ways to train your brain. For example, you could try meditating, reading your favourite book, learning a new skill, playing games/doing puzzles, listening to music, etc. When you train your brain, its skills/functions and focus on brain health, it will inevitably ripple out into your creative ability!
3. Spend time outside
Taking time to be in nature is not only healing for the soul, but it is also a great way to stay creative. Have you ever taken a walk outside and felt uplifted by the time you got home? Have you ever wondered why being outside improves your mental state so significantly? Well, science has the answer to these questions!
Thanks to a study conducted in the British Journal of Sports Medicine (2013), we now know that taking a walk in a city park or any green space for as little as 25 minutes is great for your brain. Specifically, this simple tasks is enough to give your brain a rest, boosting cognitive function. This is believed to be why spending time outside improves the brain’s creativity! Spending time outside is one of the best natural remedies you can get. Not to mention, going outside costs €00.00 and will have a positive effect on your wellbeing as a whole. You really cannot go wrong!
4. Break your routine
The brain works in repetition. This means if you do the same thing over and over and over again, it gives your brain very little chance to break the repetition. Allowing your brain to think and operate uniquely and non-repetitively is one of the many great ways to boost creativity! This can be practiced with many simple methods. Let’s say you go to the same grocery shop every time you need to buy food. You always know what you want, so you always go in the same direction.
Next time, try to walk a different route through the shop, eg go left instead of right. This is a very simple way to improve neuroplasticity in the brain. Another easy way to break routine is by brushing your teeth or combing your hair with your non-dominant hand! Another way would be changing up basic routines that will not mess up your final motive. For example, if you follow the exact same yoga video every single day, try switching it up and do a different one here and there. These are all small changes, but they will result in big changes when it comes to your creativity()!
5. Listen to music
This is a very fun way to keep those creative juices flowing. Not only will listening to the right music put you into a happy groove, but it will also improve your creativity! Although I am aware many of the individuals that are reading this article likely enjoy listening to what’s on the radio or other heavily produced music in general, try to listen to different styles of music! The more diverse your playlists are, the better! Pop (in general) often shares a similar structure and sound across the genre.
That being said, It is a good idea to try to listen to music that has a lot of movement and varied musical structure when looking to boost creativity. This will send your head in multiple directions at once, increasing the plasticity of your brain and imagination! Also, try to find new artists as often as possible rather than listening to the same artists over and over again. As a tip, classical music is specifically proven by science to have amazing effects on the brain and creativity.
However, classical music is not necessarily for everyone. If this is the case for you then don’t worry as there are plenty of other artists out there that will satisfy you and improve your creativity!
6. Microdosing psychedelics
Lastly, taking a micro-amount of a psychedelic substance is one of the most effective ways of boosting creativity! Don’t worry, microdoses are so small that they will not result in any high! Although the effects of these tiny doses of psychedelics are subtle, the benefits are not so subtle!
The #1 most commonly reported benefit microdosers have reported is an increase in creativity. Like all things, this can be explained with science! The few microdosing and psychedelic studies that have been conducted thus far have suggested that microdosing promotes neuroplasticity in the brain while amplifying cognitive function(s).
If you are aware of neuroplasticity, then you would know it is what gives us the ability to learn things with ease, take on and create ideas more effortlessly, and it also gives us the ‘think outside the box’ approach to what we are doing. This ‘think outside the box’ approach is clearly handy to the creative side of the mind. Microdosing magic truffles, magic mushrooms, or lysergamides will be most effective! If you are microdosing alongside some of the other exercises to boost creativity that I have listed above, you will inevitably become more creative!
Creativity comes and goes, however, we can optimize our brains to maintain creativity more consistently. You cannot completely prevent the dreaded ‘creative drought’, although, you can limit the negative effect it has on you and your projects. It is harder for creatives to stay in their zone more than ever-thanks a lot, Corona!
This is why I think it is more important than ever for us creators to take the few additional steps to make the creative process easier. Whether you use classical music or you choose to use psychedelics as your creative weapon of choice, any additional effort will help!
Lockdown absolutely sucks, but hang in there! We need creatively driven people like you in the world! Creativity allows us to heals ourselves and healing is something we cannot live without.