If you’re trying to come up with new ideas, your best bet is to get out of the office. Sometimes sitting at your desk, where you spend the most time, stifles your creativity. Here are 10 places you can go to get those creative juices churning.
1. Take a Walk on the Wild Side. Or at least outside. Getting out of the office and into fresh air can do wonders for your creativity. And you’re getting exercise too. Bonus!
2. Hit the Sack. Sometimes what you need to process new ideas is being unconscious. Take a nap or simmer on it while you get a good night’s sleep. You just might wake up with a brilliant idea!
3. Work Alone. If your team brainstorms together normally, have everyone go their separate ways. Give them a day or two to think on the topic and bring everyone together to discuss results.
4. Work Together. If you’re accustomed to brainstorming alone, enlist the aid of others to help you. Bounce ideas off of colleagues and family members and see how they are received.
5. Change Your Scene to Casual. If your team meets in the boardroom, take them to a coffee shop with comfy couches. Or a bar. Getting out of the work environment can unleash ideas. So can alcohol.
6. Visit Your Customers. If you are brainstorming on a topic that relates to your customers, see them in action. You may come up with new ways to solve their problems just by watching them.
7. Untether Yourself. It doesn’t matter where you go, but leave your computer, tablet and mobile phone behind. Grab a notebook and cup of coffee. Sit on a park bench. Not having the distractions of technology can free your mind.
8. Take a Flight. This may not be a drop-of-the-hat option, but if you have travel plans in the near future, use this time to brainstorm. Jot down notes and sketch ideas while you’re in the sky.
9. Play with the Kids. It’s surprising, but being around the most creative people on Earth (kids) can really inspire you. Observe how creative they can be and learn from it.
10. Read. It can be a business book or a novel, or even a magazine. Reading stimulates creative juices and helps you see things from other perspectives.
Which of these techniques do you use to come up with new ideas? Do you have other suggestions?