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Motivation

6 Simple Techniques That Will Make You More Creative

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6 Simple Techniques That Will Make You More Creative

Creativity is the driver of human progress. Without creative individuals thinking of innovative technologies and solutions, we would have been stuck in a cave rather than enjoying the comforts of an air-conditioned room. Think about it for a minute. 

The first person who invented the wheel changed the whole world. And he or she invented it because they looked at a piece of log and decided that it should be cut into round shapes for better mobility when attached to a platform. If they continued to look at the wood just as wood alone, then maybe the thought of using it to create a wheel might never have entered their mind.

Even though we have progressed very far, creative thinking is still an important ingredient of success, whether it was the thought process that led to the creation of the atom bomb which gifted America victory in WWII or the Windows operating system created by Bill Gates that revolutionized computing prowess in the world, creativity is the key. 

And if you are someone who is struggling to think creatively and come up with new, radical ideas to improve your life or the situation you’re surrounded with, then the following six techniques can help you open up your mind.

1. Accumulate more knowledge

6 Simple Techniques That Will Make You More Creative

Being creative requires that you have good enough knowledge about a wide range of topics. Someone who is only focused on computer engineering has a far lower chance of coming up with new, creative ideas when compared to someone who knows computer engineering, web server management, and online marketing. 

While the first person will remain limited to being a chemical engineer, the latter might think of combining some computer engineering concepts with online server management to create an entirely new product or service, which they can market on a social media platform. These niches might sound random, but you never know what comes from the most bizarre of combinations.

So, do yourself a favor and start learning and understanding new things rather than only being limited to your working knowledge. As you explore hitherto unknown areas, you will start connecting the various information, helping you come up with new ideas or radical solutions to existing problems. Did I mention it is also fun to learn about new topics? When you learn new topics for just the sake of it, it takes the pressure of application away, making it more fun.

2. Answer essential questions of a topic

6 Simple Techniques That Will Make You More Creative

An easy way to make yourself think creatively is first to analyze a topic based on a few essential questions. These essential questions include – how, what, why, when, where, and who. So, if you are tasked with understanding a market for a new product to be launched by your company, look at the market and ask yourself the following type of questions: 

  • Why should there be a demand for your product in the market?
  • Who will want to buy your product? Who will not buy your product?
  • How will your product be sold to the people? How will it be marketed?
  • Where will your product be sold, in all shops or at franchise stores alone?
  • When will the product be launched?
  • What will be the price of your product? What will be the benefits of using your product?

The checklist will allow you to start thinking about a topic. The more you think about it, the more you will question it until you understand the situation completely. And in the process, you might come up with creative ways to launch and market your product.

3. Get back to nature

6 Simple Techniques That Will Make You More Creative

Try taking a break and spending some time in nature. It can be a hike for just a few hours. Or even a long walk. But as long as it involves you walking in the forest and breathing in the fresh air, the trip should do you good. 

Make it a regular activity, and your creative thinking abilities are very likely to get a boost. In fact, some neuroscience studies suggest that spending time in natural surroundings can boost problem solving and creativity of a person by up to 50%. That is definitely a good improvement considering that the only thing you have to do is to spend some time among the trees.

And many scientists have a good explanation for it. Apparently, being stuck in the concrete jungle of the cities, surrounded by numerous Wi-Fi devices and electronic equipment, dampens a section of the brain that deals with high-level creative thinking. 

Hence, taking some time off from the city, and heading over to the forest is seen as a good way to get the front part of the brain to utilize itself to the fullest potential. So, the next time you feel like you are unable to think anything new – just hit the road.  

4. Join a creative community

6 Simple Techniques That Will Make You More Creative

One of the best ways to start thinking creatively is to join a creative community. You should preferably look for a group which has no qualms with being supportive of any idea. For example, someone might come up with an idea to use ants as an investigative tool by hooking it up with a tiny camera and sending it into sensitive locations to gather information. 

Someone else might voice an idea which requires people to beg on the streets for a day to understand the mind of a beggar. Whatever ideas they may be, as long as the community is tolerant of hearing out wildly varying opinions and offering beneficial feedback and suggestions, it is definitely a group you should join.

Having like-minded creative people around you has many benefits. For one, you won’t restrict your thinking. Instead, you will learn to embrace and express it fully. Second, the people who hear out your ideas and concepts will offer their viewpoints too. And this can lead to brainstorming sessions that can lead you forward into newer concepts.

5. Keep an ‘idea-book’ handy

6 Simple Techniques That Will Make You More Creative

Always keep an ‘idea-book’ handy. An ‘idea-book’ is essentially a small, easy to carry notepad that you can write down your ideas. No matter where you are, whether at home, office, traveling on the train, or anywhere else, jot down ideas as soon as they pop up in your mind. It need not be anything revolutionary. 

The ideas can be as ludicrous and out of the world as they possibly can, but you must make it a point to record it in your book. The purpose of this exercise is not to find a solution to any problem you are currently having but to simply unlock your limitless thinking potential.

For example, when traveling by bus, you might notice that people in the bus are often hooked onto their smartphones, having minimal interest in interacting with others. And suddenly you might come up with an idea for an app that makes it easier and safer for people to connect with strangers on a bus. 

Note the idea in your pad. It does not matter whether you will follow it up and actually create an app. By simply writing down ideas, you are reassuring the mind that thinking creatively or differently is okay.

After a few weeks or months, when you take out your book and read all the things you have written, you will definitely be amazed at the ideas and thoughts that came up in your mind in your observations of the world. And by that time, coming up with new ideas and concepts will be natural to you.

6. Look at things differently

6 Simple Techniques That Will Make You More Creative

The simplest way to become more creative is to train yourself to look at things differently. A mind that does not question anything, and simply accepts whatever is fed into it is a mind of a person who has no potential to be creative. Having a different viewpoint about a thing can truly help you understand it more, while also helping you expand your creative thinking process.

For example, imagine that you are a peace officer tasked with ending the conflict between two warring clans in an African jungle. The normal course of action will be to first determine what the source of the conflict is, then to contact each group and try to resolve the differences between them by bringing them to a middle ground. 

Now, if the conflict has been brewing for decades, then it will be a long time before both clans even agree to sit together.

So, abandon such linear, straightforward thoughts, and start looking at the conflict from a different perspective. The people in your peacekeeping mission might be asking themselves, “why are these two clans fighting.” Instead of focusing on that, you should ask yourself, “why haven’t these two clans killed off each other even though they have been fighting for decades?”

By asking this, you focus on finding out what is common between the clans rather than the differences between them, like other people have been doing till now. And eventually, you might find some common ground that brings both the clans together. 

For example, you might discover that both clans share a common myth of their ancestors having come from afar off, dreamy place. You can then use the myth to bring the clans together by reminding them that they are brothers and sisters of the same ancestor.

So, no matter what you are tasked with, train yourself to look at the subject matter from different perspectives, and you will come up with newer ways to deal with them in whatever way you wish. And in the process, you will become more creative in your thinking.  

Takeaway

Tapping into your creativity boils down to letting your brain think without any restrictions and giving yourself time to actually stop and think. Jotting down everything is the best way to get everything out there and free your mind up for new ideas. You can develop something great from your most outrageous thought.

Motivation

Ikigai: Finding the Perfect Sweet Spot to Revolutionise Your Life

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If you haven’t been living off the internet under a rock, then you must have at least heard the word ‘ikigai’ floating about even if you’ve not seen or read about a certain book on the same. The charming pastel blue book claiming to contain the ever-elusive secret to a long and happy life seems to have inundated every online newsfeed and offline bookstores with its appealing aesthetic.

But the real value of the delicate text, as with all books, lies beyond the cover and in-between the pages, where it discusses an age-old Japanese tradition involved in the making of life choices and career decisions. In this article, we will be talking about what this seemingly wonderful concept of ‘ikigai’ is, how you can discover your own ikigai and how to harness it to turn your life around.

What is ‘ikigai’?

‘Ikigai’ (pronounced ee-key-guy) is a Japanese word that roughly translates into ‘reason for living’. It is a lifestyle that seeks to strike balance by mapping out different individual ambitions and aptitudes. It aims to create satisfaction in a life well-lived by uniting the practical and the spiritual things that sustain a person.

The New York Post perhaps said it best: “If hygge is the art of doing nothing, ikigai is the art of doing something – and doing it with supreme focus and joy.” Simply put, it is a theory of everything— everything that a person might possibly need to be contented, happy and prosperous.

How to find your own ikigai

The four things that this unique idea considers are: what an individual loves doing, what they are good at, what the world needs, and what the world is willing to pay for. A closer look reveals that for almost everybody, it strikes the sweet spot between earning money to sustain oneself comfortably and leading a life that has meaning and contributes to the progress and well-being of the world.

So, think about your passions, interests, talents, and what you want your impact on the world to look like. Then try to figure out which of these is or can be developed into a tenable career choice, and lo and behold! The answer that you arrive at, might just be your ikigai. If you’re struggling, then look on the internet for colorful pie charts that can make your work in determining your ikigai easier.

What follows next?

As with all things in life, nothing is attained without practice. The same is applicable here too, since realigning your life choices, purpose and essentially, your philosophy of living calls for a near-total upheaval on both fronts— the personal and the professional. However, since the central premise of this unique and fulfilling Japanese concept is based on realizing your desires and ambitions in a sustainable way, there is little that can go wrong in the long run if you stick to it! 

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Motivation

Motivational Wall Art That Represent Your Culture

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The space where we live must reflect our personality, heritage, culture, and taste. One of the best ways to boost the style of home interior design with culture is to set up a wall with cultural art and craft. With walls, you have an endless opportunity to showcase ‘where you’re from’ while adding visual interest.

Whether you set up a home office or planning to renovate your living room, beautifying your walls with culture in mind provides you with the opportunity to express your values and personal beliefs- making your home sweet home a soothing place than ever before.

The issue is not everyone knows the art of wall art. If you are among those who don’t know how to do it, the first thing you need to do is stop stressing.

Remember that it doesn’t have to be perfect. It’s your home, and you can make variations that you love to foster a relaxed vibe. But that doesn’t mean you can’t achieve a wall that feels like the creation of an expert.

Unique ways to infuse culture in your wall space and refresh their look

The following tips are for those who want to create a great cultural wall.

1.   Make a cultural trip gallery

What can be more fascinating than putting your most treasured pictures from your last cultural trip on your wall? Travel inspired décor is pretty in modern interior design.

trip gallery

Let the images speak for themselves. Displaying your travel photos is a brilliant idea to show your love for your culture no matter what corner of the earth you live. Tell your story and what you learn about your own culture through the language of images.

You can use printing services or use your own printer to get physical copies of your photos. There are tons of ways to use these images but creating a travel gallery wall is perhaps the most popular choice.

Now buy a wooden photo hanger, hanging frames, or branch string to display your memories creatively on walls. Have lots of photos to display? You can also create a grid to create photo display using poster tape

2.   Create an ancestor wall

ancestor wall

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If you have wasted so many time scouring magazines and blogs for inspiration, now is the time to stop as here is a great idea for you to add a personal touch to your wall.

You can create a beautiful vintage family wall by blending the history of your own and your spouse’s family.  

Why should you create an ancestor gallery wall?

A family portrait wall can make a huge contribution to knowing your ancestral lineage and unquestionably more details about those blood relations who helped get us where you are today. Old portraits of ancestors would fascinate everyone in the home by looking at the photos of their distant relatives, knowing that some of them are not even alive.

A pro tip is to buy frames that do not match too closely with other frames. That way, it will appear as if the antique pictures have been accumulated over a long time.

3.     Use large-scale symbols

culture symbol

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As soon as you find an appealing cultural symbol, you can use that as an inspiration for your wall décor. Cultural symbols feature in books, movies, kids, clothing, movies, stationery, and fashion. You can also create a statement wall by painting a popular cultural symbol in the center. 

For instance, the Chinese dragon Feng Shui has a huge history in Chinese culture and symbolizes power, luck, and novelty. You’ve probably seen a Chinese dragon in a Chinese restaurant. These pictures have dragons with long snake-like bodies with sharp claws of hawks.

4.     Use fabric

fabric

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If you are looking for an interior designing idea that captures the attention of all the guests then

add a tinge of cultural grandiose to your living or bedroom by showcasing fabric on walls.

A tapestry can add life as well as softness to a wall. Consider vintage fabrics, scarves with patterns or other attractive textiles telling your cultural history.

Ancient Egypt and Italian tapestry from the 19th-century looks stunningly beautiful on walls. The added benefit of hanging tapestries is that they are a lot easier to move than a bunch of framed photos and paintings. 

5.   Paint a mural

paint mural

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If your home has a large wall that needs a punch, then painting it with murals is a great idea. From wall murals in interior design to street art murals, they have been used by people as a way to mark their existence.

Murals cover large surfaces with beautiful imagery and tell a visual narrative expressing the history of a culture. Plus, they are a cost-effective strategy to add exotic cultural elements to your homes.

Take some inspiration from the Thai mural paintings that usually depict temples, exotic beach scenery, rainforests, and Thai symbols. You can choose your favorite cultural elements and uplift the décor of your lounge.

6.     Hang plates depicting your culture

hang plates

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A cool idea to show your cultural roots is to hang in decorative plates with beautiful artwork. If you have friends from the southern culture, you’ll probably see hanging plates on their home walls for decorative purpose.

Most Southern homes have these hanging plates that tell stories about their homeowner’s culture and history. If you are bored with the typical old look of your walls, then redecorate them with some easy DIY wall plate ideas.

The finely hand-painted ceramic China plates are popular for their unique floral patterns in blue and white. A collection of plates arranged on the wall of your dining room can uplift its aesthetics. It is suggested to pick big and small plates of different shapes and create a layout that looks best.

Cultural wall to drive motivation

Art is commonly only used for decorating offices, homes, schools but art not only decorates a space, it actually defines it. In fact, art on walls can make a difference. You can use it to increase your productivity at work.

Culture shapes the way we spend our lives, but culture is also a key factor that can bring motivation to our everyday life.

How art brings joy to your life?

People experience both good and bad events in life. Arts let us validate our feelings and emotions. It is important to be thankful for the blessings and hope for a better future.

Gathering your much loved moments and displaying them creatively on the wall can give you the strength to move on even in your lowest phase. It can make us remember the happy moments, cheer up instantly whenever you’ll pass by, and inspire us to do more in life.

Plus, if you display happy memories from your last cultural adventure, then another trip isn’t far behind.

Try to create photos of your own. If you are busy an cannot create your own photographs, you can buy some relevant ones, just like students buys with their extracurricular activities buy dissertation to save time.

Creating a motivational wall trough art is a great idea to stay motivated and keep going. Revisiting your own culture teaches you more about your homeland and yourself. Hanging frames of your culture trip on walls remind you daily that you are linked to this place in many ways.

Why should you add cultural elements in your wall art?

Art is a language that speaks the things that cannot be said. With artwork that shows our culture, you can sense the hard work, time, and skills that went into the making. The brush strokes and colors used in the painting also made you think about the artist and what inspires him. The piece of art serves as a reminder of history and let you experience the incidents from the past.

By injecting culture in your interior design, you can give your wall a personality. Even if this isn’t your goal, you can use cultural elements as a way to showcase what you value in your life. The wall can be a perfect translator of what you like. This allows you to forge meaningful connections with anyone who comes into your home.

How art representing our culture motivates us?

The art not only gives us a brief introduction to our heritage and ethnic, but it is a valuable tool when it comes to an understanding our own selves and how we are different from others. It tells us how things changed over time.

The art depicting our culture also keep us informed about the old traditions and the interests of people. It also makes us brave. Assume a painting displaying a scene from the war field. It’ll definitely give you goosebumps. On the other side, seeing your ancestors and distant relatives is also enjoyable.

The symbols and depictions of our culture encourage us to cultivate a deeper appreciation for influence within our own particular society. Finally, your culture wall is a product of your beliefs and values, then carefully pick ideas that truly inspire you.

In summary

Filling in your blank wall spaces with art representing your culture is truly a fun activity. The representation of your culture shouldn’t be limited to walls, but a cultural touch can be given to complete interior design.

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Motivation

Why Most People Give Up Just Before They See Results

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When I was six years old, I remember giving up half-way on a math problem. I don’t recall who it was, probably a grade-school teacher who then told me a story of a man who needed to swim across a lake. The lake was 2 miles. He swam halfway and then got really tired and decided it wasn’t worth the effort. He turned around and swam back. 

I was aghast. “But he swam 2 miles either way! He could’ve just continued swimming forward and would’ve reached with the same effort!” It seemed like a pointless exercise and didn’t teach me much about giving up. When I think about it now, it’s not so surprising. We always tend to overestimate the journey ahead. 

We want tangible results

The moment we start a new project or skill, we expect results to follow soon. Most people don’t have an idea of what kind of results they want: just that it should be noticeable and experienced. 

If you recently started learning a new language, your idea of seeing results might be to speak fluently. That’s an undefined goal, and it’s difficult to say when that could happen. It could be a few months or a couple of years. But you’ll likely get frustrated before that happens. You’ll wonder why you’re working so hard but not seeing the results you want.

On the other hand, if your idea of seeing results would be to identify all alphabets correctly and pronounce two-syllable words, that’s a more realistic and well-defined result,, and you could accomplish it in six weeks with regular classes. 

Ensuring that your idea of ‘results’ is well-defined can help you identify the progress you’re making, however slow or little it is. 

The Plateau of Latent Potential 

A theory by James Clear (author of Atomic Habits) explains why progress is never linear. You’re making progress every single day, but you don’t always see these results. 

Just because you aren’t seeing results doesn’t mean they aren’t there. They are being stored in your potential. James Clear likens it to heating an ice cube from twenty-five to thirty-one degrees. An ice cube melts at thirty two degrees, but just because the visible result happens between thirty one and thirty two, doesn’t mean the heating that happened before isn’t just as important. 

This is especially true for fitness. Those who make drastic lifestyle changes often notice visible physical differences or increase in strength only weeks after committing to exercise. In those first few weeks where the body is making improvements too minute to be noticed, people often get discouraged, thinking that it’s not working.

Those that do stick at it, however, suddenly show results! To the people around them, it seems like an overnight success. Everyone acknowledges your results, only noticing your ‘thirty one to thirty two degrees’ without knowing the effort you’ve put in. 

Remember that the ‘Valley of Disappointment’, as James Clear calls it, is for a very short duration before you see the progress that you’ve been working so hard to get. We often have arbitrary expectations from ourselves: if we’ve been working hard we ‘should’ be seeing some kind of improvement! 

Having faith in yourself and re-evaluating your motives for getting the results you want can help fuel your motivation as you plow through the first few weeks (or months!). Before you decide something isn’t your cup of tea, make sure you’ve given yourself a fair chance. You’ve put in a lot of effort already. Your ‘thirty two degrees’ might be closer than you think.

“When nothing seems to help, I go and look at a stonecutter hammering away at his rock perhaps a hundred times without as much as a crack showing in it. Yet at the hundred and first blow it will split in two, and I know it was not the blow that did it — but all that had gone before.” Jacob Ruiz

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