Refresh your mind each morning: Cultivating spontaneous creativity
Creativity isn’t something most of us can access on demand.
Even if you consider yourself to be a pretty creative person, there will be times when you’re more attuned to thinking “outside of the box”.
Usually, when you’re first waking up each morning, you’re not going to be at your most creative.
The good news? There are ways to boost your creativity, even when you first wake up.
Every morning marks the start of a new day and endless opportunities to accomplish amazing things.
As you’re sipping your coffee, you should be looking for ways to refresh your mind and put yourself in the perfect position for productivity.
Here’s how you can get started.
1. Start fresh each morning
Have you ever just had a day where you felt like you didn’t get up on the right side of the bed? Sometimes, you’re just not in the right mind set for spontaneous creativity when you first wake up – and that’s ok.
Setting the right mood is an excellent way to keep yourself feeling creative and focused. Look carefully at your thoughts and ask yourself whether they’re positive or negative each morning?
Are you still focusing on what happened yesterday, or are you looking forward to the positivity could come with today?
If something is bothering you about the day before, a good way to transform your thought processes is to write down the issue and question whether you could have done anything differently.
If you discover you could have taken a different (better) approach, then take this as an opportunity to learn.
Remember, having a “fresh start” to each day also means getting up at the same time every morning to maintain successful sleep hygiene, and having a nutritional breakfast which fuels your brain.
Hydrating with a glass of water will help to get your mind on track too.
2. Indulge in some mental exercise
Trying a few creativity exercises when you first wake up each morning is an excellent way to start your day on the right track. Set your phone to silent (for now) and try exercising your creativity.
A great way to doo this is to start the morning with a brainstorm.
Grab a piece of paper and a pen and write down a problem or topic you want to come up with ideas about. For instance, you might have decided today you’re going to create a great presentation at work.
To accomplish this goal, what are you going to need?
A ten minute brainstorming session will push your brain to start thinking creatively, working the muscles in your mind to allow you to be more innovative. Don’t worry if you don’t come up with a lot of ideas on the first day.
This is an opportunity to refresh your mind – you’re not going to be marked on your work.
You may discover the more you work on your mental exercise, the more your creativity muscles grow, so you can challenge yourself more over time.
3. Try some meditation
Sometimes, working your brain is the best way to open the door to spontaneous creativity. Other times, what your brain really needs is some time to relax, unwind, and get into a better place.
Set your phone to one side and ignore any notifications after you’ve eaten your breakfast. You can play some relaxing music if you like.
The purpose of meditation is to be aware of what’s going on in your head and clearing your racing thoughts. A short session of meditation will focus your breathing and help to get you back on track.
If you haven’t tried meditation before, there are plenty of apps out there to help you, including Headspace, and Calm. These come with guided meditation sessions and breathing techniques you can work on in your own time.
Experiment with different kinds of meditation until you find something to work for you.
4. Change up your environment
If you find you never really get a surge of creativity when you wake up each morning, the problem could have something to do with your environment. Changing up your surroundings can help to cultivate more creativity in your life.
For instance, if you usually wake up to your phone every morning, and a slew of stressful emails, maybe you should keep your phone out of your room.
Open the curtains so you can see outside when you wake up, and clear any clutter from your bedroom so you don’t feel hemmed in.
It might be worth adding some new colors to your morning routine too. Yellow and orange aren’t always the best colors to have in the bedroom because they can make you feel more energetic when you’re trying to sleep.
If all else fails, take a new route to work when you’re driving on your commute each morning, and see how the surroundings affect you.
5. Start each day with something you love
Most of us start the day with a cup of coffee and a headache as we read through the emails and memos we have to sort through.
If you want to refresh your mind, however, one of the best things you can do is give yourself an early win. Wake up fifteen minutes early so you can play a round of your favorite game before you go to work.
This places you in the mood for winning, so you’re more likely to feel motivated. Instead of scrolling through social media and comparing your life to other people’s, start the day by listening to your favorite music and listing all the things you’re grateful for in your own world.
Although exercise won’t be the ideal option for everyone, it could be a great way to refresh your mind and encourage more spontaneous creativity. Working out helps to get your blood pumping, so your body’s working at full capacity.
When we exercise, our brain produces a hormone called serotonin. Serotonin is in charge of making the brain feel happy which has effects on our moods.
Working out in the sunlight first thing will also help to get your circadian rhythm on track, to encourage better sleep.
6. Challenge yourself
Speaking of starting the day with a win, it doesn’t always have to be an easy success.
Sometimes, challenging yourself is the best way to encourage more creativity. If you’ve ever tried something like an escape room before, you’ve probably noticed how your creativity levels spike when you’re involved in dealing with tricky challenges.
Obviously, you probably can’t lock yourself in a room every morning just to refresh your mind, but you can consider trying creativity exercises to help you to look at the situation from a new perspective.
There are plenty of fun ways to challenge yourself each morning before you go to work. Some people love doing the crossword puzzle in their newspaper or magazine, while others play brain-training games on their phone.
You could even ask yourself a question and do your best to answer it before you roll into work each morning.
Set yourself up for success
Ultimately, figuring out how to refresh your mind each morning is a process that’s going to differ depending on your background, and the way your brain works.
Some people discover they can unlock more spontaneous creativity if they start their day with a puzzle every morning. Other people feel happier going to work after they’ve took some time to relax and unwind with some guided meditation.
A good night’s sleep and a healthy breakfast are two things everyone needs to facilitate better creativity. Remember, good food each morning can get rid of the brain fog which makes it harder for you to think straight while you’re eating your breakfast.
The right amount of sleep ensures you can think properly and solve complicated problems without feeling overwhelmed.
However, once you’ve got those initial ingredients for spontaneous creativity out of the way, it’s up to you to figure out what works best to refresh mind.
Hopefully, the options we outlined above will give you a good starting point to work with.