Chris Sharrock is the Dean of Arts at Camberwell University. Earlier this year I had the opportunity to visit one of his lectures, during which he spoke of his experiences as a Professor and how he has developed his own technique for being creative on demand.
Of course, this is never as easy as it sounds. The dreaded writers’ block is always around the corner, and trying to force yourself to be productive can be a heavy burden to carry, especially when there are outside distractions.
Sharrock’s lecture has inspired me to post my own tips for being creative, the techniques that I use to cope with the creative demand.
- Forget about the task in hand. No, really – once you’ve thought about something for a long time, it can weigh on your mind. Forgetting about it by doing another activity helps you relax and often you’ll come up with the solution to the problem just like that.
- Just take a walk, or watch some television and you’ll be surprised how many times an idea will come to you when you least expect it.
- Keep a notepad by on your bedside table. During the time in between wake and sleep, our mind can often make spurious associations, some of which may be useful. Remember to write them down, though, as you’ll probably have forgotten it by the morning.
- Bounce ideas off people. Your family, work colleagues and other people in the same field as you – all may have something to contribute and bring in an outside factor you were initially blind to.
As a parting note, just remember that being creative is a process, and not always necessarily a product. And remember, it can take years to find a working technique that’s right for you. What are your personal methods?