Boost Your Creativity With A No-Bad-Ideas Brainstorming Exercise

Happy Holidays, friends! Did you have a great one? It’s the day after Christmas, and I’m sure we are all on the ‘vaycay-mood’ and not exactly feeling the work vibe. This post is a little different. It’s about boosting your creativity and utilizing a brainstorming session to do so. I’ve also include a FREE template to help get you started!

Being able to think outside the box is a learnable skill. It’s true. You just have to be willing to try new things. Many people think you're either a creative person or you are not. While I do agree that some people may be slightly more predisposed to thinking creatively than others, I believe creativity is a muscle that can be trained and developed.

You don't have to be a creative thinker to be able to think outside the box, you just need to do more stuff that stimulates creative thinking. Even the most creative people need help getting inspired. Meditation, listening to music, actually watching a movie at the theater, spend time outside... the list is endless.

One of my favorites? Weekly, my friend Alba of bottegastories.com and I have coffee and informal brainstorming sessions to vent about a hardship at work, new ideas, thoughts on a project or launch.

Brainstorming is a creative process of gathering insights without the pressure of contributing ‘sensible’ ideas. It helps hasten the thought process by

allowing the free flow of ideas from the participants regardless of how meaningful, wild, or weird the ideas might seem. It aims to find an out-of-the-box solution or idea through an unfiltered array of options.

Get at least one other person to join you for a 45-60 minute brainstorming session. But, if that doesn't permit, you can do a brainstorming session alone. No technology and no criticism whatsoever. Bring a topic or idea you want to brainstorm to the table, and just start riffing on it back and forth. Write down all your thoughts on actual paper and don't critique a single idea.

If you are doing this with another person, it's important to do this in person and to make entirely sure you don't have any negative energy or feedback throughout the process. You may end up with 100 horrible ideas, but I bet you'll have one or two good ones. Plus, you'll get better at this the more you do it.

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How do you boost your creativity? Join the conversation here.