Five Creativity Exercises to Stay Sharp Working From Home

Being stuck at home makes it hard to stay creative and innovative. Studies even prove this to be true – showing that people lose their problem-solving skills when burdened by stress. The ability to stay focused and come up with innovative solutions is one of the most sought-after skills in the working world. Here are five creativity exercises to keep your mind and creativity sharp while working from home.

Try Freewriting

One of the first obstacles to overcome is writing for quality from the start. People try too hard in what should be a messy idea phase. Use freewriting to free your mind. Freewriting is when you write continuously without overthinking about it. Tap into your inner stream of consciousness, and don’t filter yourself.

Desktop apps such as the Most Dangerous Writing App can help push your freewriting to the next level. The app gives you a topic and a length of time, and everything you’ve written is erased if you go more than five seconds without typing anything.

Gamify Productivity Through Time Tracking

Do you do better with a contest or some friendly competition? If so, then you could benefit from gamification. Challenge yourself to complete a task faster than before using a timer or software. If you can’t challenge someone else, then challenge yourself.

There are some different schools of thought about how to best use your time for maximum productivity. Some people use the Pomodoro technique of resting five minutes for every twenty-five minutes of work, while others say it is completely useless.

Solve Some Problems

One of the best ways to work out your problem-solving muscles is “mindstorming.” Mindstorming is a technique where you jot down a problem and then come up with 20 solutions to it. You’ll likely have no problem coming up with five, and ten won’t be too much of a challenge, but 20 is excruciating. Practicing mindstorming not only boosts your creative thinking skills but will also make you more confident in your ability to tackle problems.

Use Sketchnoting to Visualize Steps

Sketchnoting takes notes beyond words. This technique involves using shapes, arrows, and other visual representations to take notes. Verbal cognition and function are primarily handled by the left side of the brain, while the right side handles visual function.

Using abstract shapes as part of your sketchnoting can help give your creative muscles a workout. You never know, you might even come up with some solutions to problems you’d never considered before. Taking an artistic approach also triggers more reward centers in the brain, leaving you feeling happier and more motivated.

Ditch the Digital

The number of jobs requiring social and analytical skills nearly doubled between 1980 and 2015, but jobs that required physical skills and manual labour only increased by 12%. All this extra screen time is bad for your focus, though, and can cause anxiety.

You need to do something hands-on during the day to stay focused and healthy. Even something like sorting out your closet or clearing some space rebalances your brain and brings you back to your work faster than if you’d try to force your way through it.

Staying motivated and working on your wellbeing can be challenging to new home workers. These tactics can help you stay sharp and keep your brain healthy.

Jason Acker

Jason Acker

Project manager for a multinational in the energy sector. Being a remote worker fits in perfectly with my home and family life. I still pay PAYE so I have all the same rights as the office based staff

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