Each day you have the opportunity to determine how you want to accomplish the important tasks, projects, and planning that are most important to the success of your business. You can create solutions to problems. You can fine tune processes to be more efficient. You can be proactive.
The good news: you have the freedom to build your business any way you want to.
The bad news: you have the freedom to build your business any way you want to.
To take advantage of this freedom, you need time to immerse yourself in creativity or imagination mode. This down-time is when you are able to make new connections, create new product lines, solve current challenges, and fine tune.
Chris Bailey, author of The Productivity Project, states, “It’s difficult to be productive when you try to cram as much into your day as possible, because you’ll inevitably create a mental logjam as unexpected tasks crop up. Creating more attentional space around your highest-return activities will also help you come up with better ideas. The reason we tend to come up with a lot more great ideas in the shower compared to when we’re on a smartphone is simple: when we’re taking a shower, we create enough attentional space for our mind to wander and for new ideas and thoughts to bubble up to the surface.”
Sharon Lechter, author of Think and Grow Rich for Women, states, “Your imagination will help you identify the problem and/or need and will lead you to the solution as well.” The two types of imagination that she references are Synthetic Imagination (being able to arrange old concepts and ideas into new combinations) and Creative Imagination (new ideas, inspirations, and hunches).
Whether you are tapping into your Synthetic or Creative Imagination the key is that you must tap into one of them on a regular basis.
But HOW? You hardly have time to accomplish the important tasks on your to-do list, let alone take the time to tap into your ability to problem solve. Yet, you know that when you DO spend some time using your imagination and creativity, you will create a better work product AND in less time.
Lechter suggests using the following ideas to recharge your imagination.
- Get enough sleep.
- Get sufficient exercise.
- Take a walk outdoors, sit and enjoy nature.
- Become comfortable with silence.
- Read a book.
- Listen to music
- Rid yourself of self-limiting beliefs, and do not compare yourself to others.
- Suspend disbelief.
- Believe anything is possible.
- Keep a notebook and pen with you to take notes.
- Go away to an unfamiliar territory.
- Become more spontaneous, try new things.
- Ask yourself more questions, like “Why not?”
- Take creative breaks.
- Brainstorm with your family and friends.
Bailey also recommends taking 15 minutes each day to allow your brain to wander. Sit where you won’t be distracted or interrupted, set a timer for 15 minutes, and jot down any ideas that come to mind.
Whether you identify more with the ideas of Lechter or the wandering exercise of Bailey, or a combination of both, you will need to devote a small portion of your day to doing nothing.
Your turn! Do you spend time doing nothing so you can ultimately do more? Share your strategies below – how do you exercise your freedom?
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