Tag Archives: boosting creativity

How to boost productivity when you’re all over the place

As someone who sometimes wishes a day would last longer than 24 hours, I have to continually keep finding ways of maximizing my time during the day.

Thing is, I’m an entrepreneur and an artist. I’ve got my business, Boston Mobile Dance Studio where I also teach, I have my band the Beantown and I’m the founder of the BeanTown Lockers.

Additionally, I’m a proud father of 3 awesome little munchkins. So, all in all, using my time productively during the day is crucial for me. I’m always looking for ways to boost productivity, and every little tip really helps.

I’m always looking for ways to boost productivity, and every little tip really helps.

First of all, I’m going to guide you through the tactics and habits that I use to boost productivity and make my day more productive.

But let me tell you something before going further. The biggest change I’ve experienced in my productivity is after reading the book “Miracle Morning” by Hal Elrod.

Getting up early in the morning and implementing my Miracle Morning routine has helped me organize my day better. It’s helped me clear my mind and find clarity for the rest of the day and the upcoming tasks.

Don’t sit down all the time

When working at my desk, I don’t sit down. I’ve placed my laptop on a high desk shelf so that I’m standing while working in front of the screen. I’ve found that this helps me keep my energy flow moving and the strain on my back is minimized.

Define time blocks of working

Some people find that working in 90-minute blocks makes them most productive. After these 90 minutes, you should take a 15-minute break. But this brake needs to be something useful, not surfing the web, scrolling through Facebook or something not so useful.

These 15 minutes should be used for a useful activity such as going for a walk, doing some exercise, meditating or having a healthy snack.

I usually work in 2-hour blocks during which I time myself. I time every 10 minutes in which I drink 30 sips of water.

Hydrating with water is crucial for the whole body and for the brain. It also helps in reducing stress, keeping the body balanced and energized. I also make 10-minute breaks to do some exercises such as neck rolls, push ups, etc.

You can always try the Pomodoro Technique to boost productivity, which has been proven as very effective.

pomodoro boost productivity
Pomodoro Technique for boosting productivity

Having a healthy sleep pattern

It’s important to have a healthy sleep pattern. Sleep is crucial for the brain. Lack of sleep causes lowered concentration levels, increases stress, and causes burn out.

Although it may not be possible to go to bed early in some situations, I try to make it my goal to go to bed by 11 pm. This way I can get enough sleep to be able to get up at 4:00 am.

When I gig with my band, I get home very late so I don’t go to bed before 2 am, in these cases I sleep in unless it’s necessary to get up early. I also try to take power naps during the day if I didn’t get enough sleep during the night.

sleep and boost productivity
Sleep well and boost productivity

Balancing work and life

I’m a family man. So even though I have a day full of projects and responsibilities, I do my best to take time off. I spend my evenings with my family, I take time off to go out with my wife and my kids. I love going to the movies because it really helps me detach from the fast paced and sometimes very stressful work situations. Spending simple moments with my wife, laughing and joking around helps me remember that life should be enjoyed and not taken so seriously.

Balancing work and life is really important for boosting productivity. Failing to balance these two will not only cause decreased productivity, but it will also eventually cause burnout.

Continuous learning

As someone with many roles and responsibilities, I’ve truly experienced the importance of learning. You should never believe that you’ve learned everything you need to know.

Failing to develop and expand your knowledge and skills will make you unproductive in all areas of your life. There’s always something to learn.

For me, I’m always looking to learn more as an entrepreneur and as an artist. I love listening to audio books, especially while driving my car. I drive a lot, so I try to use this time constructively.

I love the way Brian Tracy puts it:

The second part of continuous learning is for you to listen to audio programs in your car. Audio learning has been described as the most important advance in education since the invention of the printing press.

Boost productivity by listening to music

Music can enhance all areas of our work and life. But it’s important to choose this music carefully.

Different genres and frequencies have different effects on the brain. Energetic and fast music with fast beats or lyrics should be avoided during mental activities.

As a performer and a natural introvert, being too hyped up tires me emotionally and mentally. So, I prefer to listen to classical music during mental work, it helps me relax and focus.

Whereas during active work such as rehearsals, dance classes and workouts I listen to energetic music. This helps me maintain my energy, motivation, and creativity.

And that would be that from me, my dear friends. I hope you’ve enjoyed this read and that it will help you boost your productivity.

Try some of these things and tell me how it goes, I’d love to hear your opinions.

beginners dance boton

Boosting Creativity Hacks Cheat Sheet [INFOGRAPHIC]

We all have our ups and downs with creativity. Especially if you work in an industry where creativity is crucial. Sometimes you’re creativity juices are flowing like crazy, yet sometimes, your brain is just, well… like tabula razza. So we need a push here and there, we need a tactic for boosting creativity.

This is why we thought we’d make a small collection of tips and share them with you. These pieces of advice are short and sweet, based on our own experiences here at the Boston Mobile Dance Studio team and also based on the experience of many other creatives and professionals out there.

Only instead of giving you a huge in depth article to read through and scrutinize over; the which, what, when and how of the advice you just read. We made a sweet little infographic cheat sheat, with bite sized tips that will help your creative juices start flowing in no time.

So have fun and share your thoughts with us!

Boosting Creativity Hacks

CreativityHacksCheatSheet
INFOGRAPHIC: Boosting Creativity Cheat Sheet

You can read more about creativity on our blog. Find out what’s killing your creativity.  Or read about how creativity boosts problem solving skills and our guide on boosting creative problem solving skills.

Creativity boosts problem solving skills

Whether you work for a large company or a small start-up. Or you’re a freelancer, entrepreneur or a professional in a certain field. You will always have to face problem solving. But what people tend to forget, is that effective problem solving requires creativity. In fact, creativity and problem solving go hand in hand, thus the title of today’s post; Creativity boosts problem solving skills.

We are often told that creativity requires “thinking out of the box”. But what does this actually mean? A simple answer would be, the expansion of our way of thinking which goes further than the habituated methods which we are used to in our thinking process. But here we’re going to take a look at some interesting methods and activities that allow our creativity to boost problem solving skills.

Using arts and artistic surroundings to boost creativity

Artistic surroundings, visual arts and creative movement all have an effect on the right side of the brain. The right side of the brain is the creative side and it needs to be regularly activated and stimulated in order to exploit the full potential of one’s creative abilities. Even a different workplace surrounding, decorated with visual arts, interesting and original decorations and vivid colours have this effect on the brain. One of the examples we often mention within our team at Boston Mobile Dance Studio is Mindvalley. Their work surroundings are based on creative and comfortable design that nurtures creativity and productivity, thus boosting problem solving skills too.

Dance and movement as a creative outlet and creativity booster

Clients often tell us how dance classes at Boston Mobile Dance Studio help them destress, switch off and get in touch with their inner creative side. Many professionals and members of the corporate world come to our dance lessons because dance helps them activate their right side of the brain. After our dance classes they’re ready for new problem solving challenges.

The simple word exercise

Balder Onarheim, professor of creativity and serial entrepreneur, did a really interesting TED talk on using words to boost creativity. This exercise really is simple, but it does wonders for expanding the mind, activating creativity and coming up with creative solutions. During a certain activity you are doing, come up with a random word that comes to your head and try to connect that word with that activity. He gives an example of brushing his teeth and connecting the random word given by a member from the audience, and the connection he comes up with is, brushing camel hair with a tooth brush. The connected dots or the solution don’t always have to make sense or to be logical. That’s what creativity and innovation is about.

The dot exercise

Say Keng Lee did a great piece of writing on a question about boosting creativity on Quora. He gives the example of the experiment he did with his students, adult and children. Drawing a black dot on a white board (you can do this on paper) and asking the students to say what they “see”. It was interesting that adults would typically come up with two basic ideas. Whereas children would come up with many more, interesting and “out of the box” ideas. What does this mean? Well obviously, kids are much more creative than adults because they still don’t have the limiting belief systems, logical expectations and conclusions made upon standard repetitive habits. But as adults, we take on many belief systems and logical standards that limit our ability to be creative and to use our full potential. So go ahead, try this exercise. But the main point is to forget everything you’ve learned so far in your life and to think like a child.

The CPS Process

The Creative Problem Solving process is based on the creative geniuses approach to solving problems; geniuses such as Albert Einstein and Leonardo Da Vinci naturally employed this process. But it was formalized by Alex Osborn during the 50’s. As you will notice, the process requires the expansion of the mind via brainstorming and “thinking out of the box”.

creative problem solving
Creative Problem Solving process – Alex Osborn

Boosting creativity by being who you really are

Not so many years ago, and even until today in some countries, it was believed that creativity was reserved only for the mad and crazy. A child is often molded into the mainstream belief systems, and for showing individualities and peculiar differences is considered weird and does not “fit in”. But as new thought has become part of the mainstream, people have become more interested in self-development, in discovering who they really are and being the best versions of themselves. All of this assumes the fact that we all are different, each and every individual is special and has their own special features and characteristics. And all of this also assumes that we all have creativity inside of our genetic code, it’s just the matter of how we express it.

creativity characteristics
Some features and characteristics of creativity

“You have two choices in life: You can dissolve into the mainstream, or you can be distinct. To be distinct, you must be different. To be different, you must be what no one else but you can be….” —Anonymous