Whatever our situation, stage of life, or needs, creativity is a valuable skill. On a personal level as well as in our jobs and groups and institutions in which we are involved, there’s a continual need for creative approaches and solutions.
Journaling can be a tool to expand creativity. Simply writing has great power to bring ideas, possibilities and breakthroughs. Yet, it is easy to get into a pattern – even a rut – with our journaling by doing it the same way continually. And many people either don’t journal at all or sporadically.
Here are some ways to diversify journalers’ practices that can activate new creativity and perhaps inspire non-journalers to try some of these different approaches.
You don’t have to be a graphic designer or an artist to use this technique. Simply pick up a pencil or colored pencils/pens and start drawing. You don’t need to have a specific subject in mind, or you may give yourself a topic or a problem that you want to creatively address.
It isn’t about drawing something perfectly – it doesn’t matter how the drawing looks. What matters is that you’re taking the time to just let your creativity flow. Don’t worry about any “rules” and draw whatever comes to mind. You may be surprised what appears.
Use Mixed Media
Mixed media journaling is basically using different types of content. For part of the journal you’ll jot down your ideas, then you can use pictures, ticket stubs and potentially even drawing to inspire your creativity.
Use the Power of Music
Have you ever noticed just how much of an impact music can have on your creativity? It can really help to play some uplifting or inspiring music while writing or drawing in your journal.
You’ll find as the music plays, you’ll start to experience numerous emotions. Thoughts will also automatically pop into your head – write these down.
It can also help if you listen to the music through headphones as this will block out all other noises, allowing you to be fully immersed in the music.
Try Mind Mapping
Mind mapping is a fairly new journaling technique which can work wonders for creative people. It’s a visual style journal – you record your ideas in a visual way.
For example, write down the main theme of your idea or topic, draw a big circle around it, then think of other ideas which relate to it. You then connect your sub ideas to the main idea. Allowing your mind to see and expand on connections can open up new vistas of thought.
Brainstorming is simply rapidly generating a variety of ideas or possible solutions. It is most commonly used in a group setting, but individuals can use it effectively as well. Simply focus on the topic you are addressing and write down every idea without worrying about how doable or realistic they are. Just let the ideas flow. Keep writing, even keep your pen moving when you think you are empty. It’s likely more things will rise to the surface. A second step after all the ideas are on paper is to either do some traditional journaling about some of the most intriguing thoughts. This could be augmented by mindmapping.
May your creativity and creative problem solving be expanded by using these techniques.
If you want to explore additional creativity ideas, check out: 21 Ways to Skyrocket Your Creativity