Relying on your memory alone makes coming up with new ideas harder than necessary. There is no brainstorming rule that says you can’t use what is around you as a starting point for your thought process. The people, the sights, the smells and sounds in your surroundings are a constant source of inspiration if you take advantage of them.
Skeptical? Test the theory.
- Gather a group for a brainstorming session and give them the task of inventing something such as a new car, for example.
- Separate the group in half.
- Use magnets to post images from car brochures on a mobile easel or whiteboard, and position it so it is only visible to one half of the group. The other half will have to rely on their imagination.
- After 15 minutes, tally up the number of new car ideas developed by each half of the group. The half that was able to see the car images should have more ideas.
There is no substitute for a creative environment when you need to be creative. Still want more evidence? Check out these two suggestions from a list of 10 Creative Rituals You Should Steal.
#8. Brainstorm at the Bar – Think outside of work. Save work for the actual work part of your project.
#9. Get Out of the Building – Alleviate the pressure associated with coming up with something from nothing. Observe and build from that.
Creativity, brainstorming, and innovation go hand in hand. Whether you want to invent a flying car, or simply decorate your office, there is always a good reason to step outside yourself.
~Kathleen Sales, Quartet Blog Editor & Author