3 Simple Ways Changing Your Environment Can Stimulate Creativity | Nicole Victory Design

3 Simple Ways Changing Your Environment Can Stimulate Creativity

Stuck in a creative rut? You may just need a change in scenery. I'm sharing 3 simple ways changing your environment can stimulate creativity.

Wake up, make coffee, check email, put out a few fires, create mockups for clients, make revisions for clients, follow up with new clients, send out invoices, and on and on and on. If you run your own business, I’m sure you can relate to how the days begin to run together.

Running a creative based business can take its toll on a designer’s mojo, and lately, I’ve been stuck in a bit of a rut. I knew I needed a change in scenery to mix things up, but I wasn’t quite sure what I should do.

I was working on my vision board for 2018, and I placed a picture of New York City on the collection of images I had for my year. Lately, for some reason, New York was calling to me.

Then the next day…..

It was an extremely cold afternoon, and I was walking to a meeting downtown. It had actually started to snow, a rarity in here in Chattanooga.

My phone rang, and it was my brother.

“Hello,” I said.

“Yo, I think we should take mom to New York City for Mother’s Day. She said she’s always wanted to walk across the Brooklyn Bridge.” My fast-talking brother began to rattle off the less “touristy” attractions he’s visited while doing business in NYC.

My brother and I are complete opposites. I’m a type A, introverted planner, while my brother thrives on consistent chaos and an entourage of friends and acquaintances.

Even though we’ve frequently visited NYC, I had no idea what to expect from a trip planned by my brother. I knew my mom and I were in for a non-traditional New York experience.

A few weeks later the details were few, as is common with my fly by the seat of his pants brother, and the tickets were booked. My vision board and desire to get out of a rut manifested into a real-life experience!

I decided to really take in my environment while in New York, to help revive the creative juices. It’s no wonder artists and designers flock to New York City since there’s inspiration everywhere!

How to get an impactful Creative boost out of Changing Up Your Environment

Since the brain craves novelty, simply leaving your home office and getting out in the world can make a huge difference in resetting your creativity.

  1. Focus on All of The New Visuals and Textures:
    As a creative professional, the way I consume and interpret visual information is intense and constantly bombarding my senses. Colors, shapes, textures, and lighting are always on my mind and influencing the brands I create for my clients.

    When you reset your visual filter and really start to focus on what your new environment looks like and feels like, your novelty craving brain gets a boost in creativity. Even if you don’t run a creative based business, the entrepreneurial life requires non stop creative problem solving skills.

  2. Enjoy New Sound Inspiration:
    Mixing up the sounds in your daily life will take your brain off of auto pilot and force you to engage in more creative thinking.

    My day to day life in Chattanooga is pretty quiet, except for the sirens coming from the fire station near by, I mostly hear birds chirping and the TV or music humming in the background.

    New York’s daily soundtrack was quite the opposite of what I’m used to. With the horns constantly honking, a variety of languages interspersed in the street conversations, the intense echoing of sounds in the subway, and sirens constantly on the go, there was always a new sound vying for my attention.

    Even if you decide to just go and work at a coffee shop or cafe for a couple of hours, take notice of the ambient noise. The change in sound will get your creative gears turning.

  3. Gain A Different Perspective On Life By Interacting With New People:

    When you work from home, human interaction is definitely limited unless you make an effort to leave the house and engage with people. My crazy coworker cats don’t exactly count as human interaction.

    My brother never meets a stranger. While my mom and I tend to be more reserved and introverted, my brother talks to EVERYONE.

    While in New York, we met a woman from Serbia on the Brooklyn Bridge, chatted for at least an hour there, and then met her for breakfast at Tom’s Restaurant, which was featured in Seinfeld, the next morning for even more fascinating conversation.

    We also enjoyed lunch with an executive producer of Pawn Stars, who my brother had worked with last year on an episode. It was interesting talking to her about her work as a freelancer in the TV production world, especially since both my brother and I are self-employed.

    It’s so easy to get caught up in your own little world that revolves around your business that sometimes you can lose perspective. For me, seeing how different life and work can be in professions outside of the design world was definitely inspiring.
    The next time you change up your environment really stop and focus on how it’s different from what you typically experience.

Getting out of my small city bubble and having my brother be the tour guide was the perfect cure for designer’s block. Even though I’m so grateful to live in a small Southern city, I really gained a new appreciation for home.

If you plan a trip, even if it’s something close to home, and change up your environment, your creativity and your business will only benefit!

How have you gotten out of your creative rut? Drop me a comment below.

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