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Using Creative Thinking Skills to Thrive

creative thinking

Challenging times call for creative thinking skills and living in the midst of a global pandemic, COVID-19, is no different. Creative thinking skills help us cope with unfavorable possibilities, help us stay entertained, and keep our lives teeming with meaning and momentum.

Developing Creative Thinking Skills

Read Inspirational Books

Reading can inspire us, motivate us and allow us to think about things in a new or creative way. Of course, you can choose from a seemingly endless number of inspirational books to explore. Biographies and autobiographies of inspirational people can spark creativity and motivation, as can books on personal, financial and business development. Here are five books to consider:

1. “The Four Agreements,” by Miguel Ruiz

  • For example, the book’s Four Agreements framework can be applied to problem-solving and conflict resolution. 

2. “The Art of Happiness,” by Dalai Lama

  • This book encourages you to practice the discipline of self-reflection. The more you reflect on your life, the deeper you look into your inner self.

3. “The Magic of Thinking Big,” by David J Schwartz

  • This book illustrates the importance of preparing your mind and your thinking for the journey of personal change.

4. “The 4-Hour Workweek,” by Timothy Ferris

  • This book can inspire you to go out and learn what you need to know to transform your life and lifestyle.

5. “How Successful People Think: Change Your Thinking, Change Your Life,” by John C. Maxwell

  • This book teaches you how to tap into your creative potential and derive lessons from the past to better equip you for future challenges.

Meditate (Only 10 Minutes a Day Needed!)

Meditation is like a spa day for the mind. We all need to wind down and relax. The mind needs to relax. We’re continuously stimulating ourselves. 

According to Harvard Business Review, which published an article written by researchers, 10 minutes of meditation can make you more creative

The researchers state that their “participants reported that meditation helped them clear their minds, focus more on the task at hand and come up with original solutions. And they did.”

Take a Journaling Initiative

Writing is a form of channeling that directly influences the mind. Journaling about our problems can help us harness our creative thinking skills to create solutions. 

Though diving so deeply into our mental states can seem uncomfortable at first, courage will accumulate with time, especially after experiencing the results from the first few journaling sessions. 

Start with short spurts of morning journaling where you write whatever’s on your mind. Time these and expand the amount of time as your confidence increases. Buy a special journal for this writing that’ll keep you returning to the pen. 

Using Creative Thinking Skills to Tackle the COVID-19 Blues (And More)

So you began the journey to developing these creative thinking skills and want to put them to good use amidst the perils of a pandemic. Where to begin? 

If you’ve already begun using the suggestions above, reading, meditating, and journaling, you’re definitely on track to thriving during these times. That being said, here are some specific ways to practice your new creative thinking skills.

Staying on Track 

These are not easy times. These times leave us out of work, making us distant from friends and family and perhaps, making us question our paths in life. Staying on track during these times comes down to finding creative ways to maintain meaning in our lives. How can we convert our stress and anxiety into meaningful action through layoffs, social distancing, and financial turmoil?

I won’t answer that here (each person has a unique set of circumstances) but know it may take a solid set of creative thinking skills to discover your unique way of staying on track.

Reaching Out in Times of Need

These times are telling us that we must change the way we interact. 

We are social creatures. Our need for connection is evolutionarily ingrained in us. We accumulate meaning and deep satisfaction from being with friends and family. It’s essential for our mental well-being. 

So how can we use our creative thinking skills to find integrative solutions for this? Allow me to relate another anecdote.

A couple of months ago, feeling a bit lonely and down, I phoned a friend. I explained my feelings, and, unsurprisingly, he had been feeling similarly. Then we came up with a simple yet empowering idea. We scheduled a call for each week on the same day and at the same time.

During each call, we vulnerably detail our mental states and how our week went. Then we discuss how to better go about any projects we’ve been working on. The calls have been emotional times of release and joyful integration.

Staying Grounded (Creatively)

COVID-19 or no COVID-19, the world is in constant flux. We should use our creative thinking skills to stay grounded when possible. What does that look like? 

For example, we may use cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) techniques to transform how we view our fears and life situations. How you decide to use these techniques depends on your current struggles and how you’d like to heal them creatively.

Some other ways to stay grounded are creating art, taking care of a pet, gardening and going on walks. 

Again, these aren’t easy times. We need to take care of each other right now. Applaud yourself for hanging in there! Focus on your wellness and the wellness of those around you.

Looking for more ways to live your best life? Join TelMD today!

Let’s make wellness contagious!™

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