Monday, December 4, 2017

Learn How To Trick Your Mind Into Being Creative

Aadil Vera performed a TEDx Talk (TEDx NSU - running time 7:53) entitled Trick Your Mind Into Being Creative.


The biggest takeaway I got from this talk was to work within some kind of limitation. We all know that the white sheet or the blank canvas are equally terrifying to gaze upon, and even more frightening when coupled with the knowledge that you could put anything on there, you must choose from a plethora of options, you have to narrow it down and decide.


Instead, he suggests, what he calls The Box Strategy: "The entire idea is that you want to think inside the box. You want to think with a limitation because when you think with a limitation, that limitation provides you a guideline to get that creative response."

He goes on to explain that the blank page gives you "too much freedom to create" and so your mind typically falls to the most familiar or uninspired solution. All creatives must be wary of picking the first idea that pops up, of settling on something expected or boring. Just as last week, Brad Herzog discussed developing your ideas, not latching onto the first thing that pops into your head, Aadil Vera suggests creating limitations to ensure that doesn't happen.

"A limitation will lead you to something really colourful out of the box."

So how can we use limitations to help with our creativity? To help with our writing or our art creation? Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Create a painting with only one colour.
  • Write a short story in 450 words.
  • Create a character who has nothing in common with yourself.
  • Set a timer and paint for only 8 minutes.
  • Look around you and create art using only images that you see.
  • Make a poem using only the words on a single novel page.
  • Paint using some material from your kitchen (coffee?).
  • Choose 3 coloured pencils and use only them for a drawing.
  • Open a book to the 38th page, 4th line down. Use that sentence to inspire a scene.
I think you get the idea. Vora finishes his talk saying "Place creative limitations on yourself. Make challenges more challenging." In this way, he suggests that we can all increase the creativity in what we create.