Five Minute Creativity Boost
What is creativity? By definition it is: “the ability to transcend traditional ideas, rules, patterns…and create [bring into being] meaningful new ideas, forms, methods, interpretations”. We humans love to create…and recreate; to bring forth and nurture originality as if it were our precious child; to push the boundaries of “Why?” and ask, “Why not?”.
Have you tasted the stroke of midnight? Heard fruit ripening on the vine? Ever held a shooting star in the palm of your hand? Smelled tomorrow? Seen the fragrance of a rose?
The logical part of our brain says: “Not possible”; “Doesn’t exist”; “Can’t do it”; “Human senses don’t work that way.”. But the creative part of our brain rises to the challenge and attempts the seemingly impossible: “Stroke of midnight? Hmm, rich, decadent, tangy…delicious!”
Five Minutes, Five Senses!
A simple 5-minute exercise may boost your creativity, bring clarity to your thoughts, open your imagination, and yes, aid memory. The exercise is done in 4 steps. Focus your attention on each individual sense (taste, sight, touch, smell, hearing) one at a time, and fully engage in that particular sense before moving on to the next. (Eyes may be open or closed.)
Step 1: Experience familiar sensations.
- Taste cold, juicy watermelon
- Chocolate melting in your mouth
- Bite into a sour lemon
- Watch a beautiful sunset
- See the smiling face of a happy child
- Watch a bird fly across the sky
- Pet the soft fur of a kitten
- Walk barefoot along a sandy beach
- Make a snowball with your bare hands
- Inhale the aroma of freshly brewed coffee
- Smell a pine forest
- Smell an ocean breeze
- Listen as a distant train whistle grows louder, then fades away
- Hear a clock strike five o’clock
- Hear the sound of raindrops on a tin roof
Step 2: Apply all five senses to a single experience; such as baking bread.
- Knead the dough with your hands
- Smell the bread baking in the oven
- See the golden color of the freshly baked loaf
- Hear the crunch of the crust as you bite into it
- Taste the flavors as you savor a slice spread with melting butter
Step 3: Experience each sense through obscure and unusual combinations. This allows the creative side of the brain to join in, trying to answer a riddle. (Don’t get hung up or struggle; just go with whatever comes and move on. With practice, your creative brain will know what to do.) For example:
- Taste the air inside a bubble
- Walk along the red stripe of a rainbow
- Hear wax shine
- Smell square
- See an echo in a canyon
Step 4: Mix up your bread baking senses. For example:
- See the crunch of the crust
- Smell the ingredients into forming a dough
- Taste the color of the finished loaf
- Hear the flavor of melting butter spread on a warm slice
- Touch the aroma of the baking loaf
A gifted storyteller moves an audience through all senses: hearing, sight, touch, smell, and taste to create a truly satisfying and magical experience. Heightening the senses gives the brain more avenues for memory recall; no longer relying solely on rote data filing, but recalling feelings, sensations and associations.
From once upon a time to happily ever after is just five senses away.
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