My theme for the Blogging from A to Z challenge is Creativity. Sometimes, to really boost our creativity, we need to think outside the box. We need to look at things beyond our normal perspective.
There are several things you can do to help yourself think outside the box.
*Don’t make assumptions. Don’t take something for granted. Rather, question what is commonly known about whatever it is you’re working on.
*Look at it from a different angle. This can be figuratively or literally. If you’re working on a physical project—a sculpture or an invention, for instance—walk around it, turn it over, add or remove something. In writing, experiment with different voices. Rewrite a scene from another character’s POV. If you’ve created an outline for your story, try deviating from what you’ve planned, whether with a character’s reaction or with the plot.
*Step away from your project. Take a walk or even take a few days off. Observe things around you, but let yourself and your mind relax. It’s amazing how new ideas can come to you when you aren’t immersed in the details of your work.
*Make sure to break up your routine on a daily basis. When you’re in a rut, your mind gets into one as well.
*Talk with others about your project, even those who may not be in the same field. Voicing your ideas helps free up your mind, and ideas or questions from your listeners can trigger new ideas.
*Take a good look at your inner self. What beliefs, inhibitions, tensions are keeping you from exploring new ideas? Talk to others or read about ideas that are contrary to your own.
*Keep an open mind. Be willing to change.
This article says thinking outside the box can be taught, and there are creative studies programs at many universities.
Is it difficult for you to “think outside the box”? Do you have any techniques that work for you?
Great tips, Linda. Keeping an open mind is essential, even though I find it difficult sometimes. No, all the time. 🙂 But that’s always an excellent reminder. Gotta keep an open mind.
Silvia, I agree, that’s very important!
. Great article when I need to think outside of the box, I try and figure out what the norm would be, and then trying to figure out what the opposite of that would be. Sometimes I end up settling somewhere in the middle, but it’s definitely not where I first would have thought. Thanks for sharing this great post.
Debi, that’s such a good way to approach it! Thanks for that tip. I’m going to use that one. 🙂
This is so true.
I like to think that I’m an open-minded individual, and, with the right stimulation, that I’d be able to think out of the box… I wonder if there is an online course available?
Writer In Transit
Michelle, I googled “online class thinking outside the box” and saw this. http://www.creativelive.com/courses/thinking-outside-box-joel-grimes I stopped there, but there might be others!