How to Train Yourself to Be Creative: Spend Time Alone

If you talk to individuals who are highly creative, one of the common themes you’ll find among them is that they enjoy being by themselves. It allows them to have quiet time, which can sometimes be really essential to honing in on your creativity.

While alone time is a good thing and does help get your creative juices flowing, by no means does it mean you have to be anti-social.

Let’s take a look at some benefits of spending time alone and how that can help boost your creativity in the process.

Benefit #1 – Increased Concentration

When you’re alone and not distracted, it’s easier to concentrate, which in turn can also help with your productivity. But there is one thing worth mentioning here and it has to do with distractions. Being alone with the TV on or while sitting in front of your computer is not the same thing as truly spending time with just yourself. Instead, find a place you can devote specifically to quiet alone time where you are free from distractions. Then set aside a specific time each time to go to that quiet space and let your creativity flow.

Benefit #2 – Clear Your Mind

When you spend time alone, free from distractions, you’ll find that it’s a quick and easy way to clear your mind. Not only does it free you from all the chaotic thoughts that race around in your head continually, it’s also an opportunity to unwind and relax. Creativity thrives when your body is relaxed and you’re mind is free of mental clutter. Again, just like mentioned in the benefit above, make time each day to clear your mind so you can tap into your creative self.

Benefit #3 – Problem Solving

Another benefit of spending time alone – and again we’re talking about quiet, distraction-free alone time – is that it gives you the space to problem solve. This is essential for increased creativity. When you begin to train yourself to spend quiet time alone and tap into your creative side, you’ll be able to start thinking about different solutions to solve a problem(s) you’re having. You can then begin to solve problems more effectively.

Does all this sound just a bit like meditation? Perhaps. But here’s the key: When you make time to be alone – even if it’s just 20 minutes every day – your brain then becomes free to do what it does best – think. When you’re constantly bombarded by input from your smart phone, the television, a conversation with your spouse or coworker, the podcast you’re listening to and more, there simply isn’t room in your head for anything else.

So allow your brain the luxury of quiet time. You might just be surprised at how creative you can be, when you’re not so busy with other things.

Tap Into Your Imagination to Release Your Creative Spirit

Many people think that they don’t have a creative bone in their body but that just isn’t true. Remember when you were a kid and you could creatively make up games, build secret forts and more? Or how about that imaginary friend you talked to? Those things all prove that you once were creative and can be again. Learning to use your imagination again is a great way to work on developing your creativity.

Like a muscle, your imagination can become weak from disuse. By making time to exercise your imagination with a few fun mind games, you’ll soon find it’s strong enough to bring out your inner creative self. Here’s how.

Grab the nearest book or magazine you have close by – open it up to a random page and then choose one sentence. Now, let your imagination run wild and create a story based around that sentence. This is not only a great way to tap into your imagination, but it’s also a quick way to get your creative juices flowing. If you ever find you’re hitting that dreaded writers block, this is a quick trick to use to help get past it.

Pick a superpower – yes, you read that correctly. It may sound a bit silly but don’t skip over it. It’s fun, lets you bring your inner child out and it’s a great way to practice your imagination skills and in turn, bring the creativity out.

After you choose your superpower, don’t stop there. Now it’s time to let the creativity show. Ask yourself these questions:

  • How would I use this power?
  • When would I use this power?
  • How would my life change with this power?
  • What trouble would I get in?
  • What problems would be solved?

I bet you’ll be surprised at where your imagination takes you. Grab a pen and piece of paper and write as you do this exercise. Who knows what it could turn into – a blog post, an eBook, a YouTube video…the possibilities are endless.

Venture outside and take a walk – this one is simple and easy but incredibly powerful. As you walk, not only are you getting some fresh air and exercise, but you’re also allowing your mind to run free. Use your senses to get your imagination going. Example: smell – are you near pine trees? Breathe deep and smell the pine then start imagining being in an enchanted forest or medieval kingdom. The key here is to use as many of your five senses as you can and let your imagination go from there.

This is just a small list of ways you can tap into your imagination to help develop your creativity. By no means is this an exhaustive list of ideas, it’s just meant as a starting point for you. Once you’ve practiced these ideas, you’ll find more will come to you. The key is to not censor your thoughts, but to just allow your imagination to run wild, just like when you were a kid.