Stay Alive, Stay Creative

By Alan Irazoqui.

The world has been in constant change these past years. New organizations have been founded, new jobs have been created, and new skills have been demanded and required to be learned. For example, when my parents were in school, learning Microsoft Office was not part of their curriculum, whereas this is almost mandatory in every school nowadays.

Back then, during the Industrial Revolution, workers worried about losing their jobs to industrial machines. Today, people in the workforce are worried about losing their jobs to robots.

Peter Diamandis, a renowned physician, engineer, and entrepreneur, assisted as a speaker to an entrepreneurship summit in Monterrey a few years ago that my sister attended. She told me that someone in the audience asked him “When robots take over our jobs, what is humanity going to do with all the newfound free time?” and he said something that she was not expecting to hear: “We’ll finally be able to focus on making art”. Mark Cuban said that the most-wanted skill in the coming years will be creative thinking. The world is demanding for more and more creativity constantly. Better and new videos, movies, books, paintings, and even businesses. Creativity relates to novelty and innovation and that is how we measure progress: with how we have changed our ways.

In order to boost your creativity and help you to change your life and the world, here is a list of things that will make you a creative god/goddess.

Ask. Ask people, Google, nature. We can’t possibly know everything ourselves. We might know stuff that others don’t and viceversa. The more you ask, the more you’ll know, and the more creative you’ll be. And, something lots of people forget to do, ask yourself. Break things and build them back, question things, reflect on life’s biggest mysteries, go over your actions of the day and think about what you did right and what you would change to make tomorrow better.

There are 2 steps in the creative process that goes on in our brains: incubation and enlightenment. The first step is the recollection of ideas and it usually happens when you are in silence. Then, the enlightenment, which usually goes on during your sleep, is when the creative ideas come to your head based on the information you fed it with throughout the day.

Try new things. Expose yourself to different cuisines, cultures, religions, people, activities. Talk to people that are not the ones you usually talk to, eat at restaurants that are different than your usual cuisine, visit a temple or a church. Your mind needs to be open for these activities to pave their way to your heart and mind. This is what has happened to creative people who have come up with amazing ideas that we all enjoy today: sushirritos, kimchi tacos, hip hop yoga, glamping, among many more.

Travel. Go to the other side of town you usually don’t go to, little towns outside your city, other cities, other countries, other continents. Now, sure you’re probably thinking “Sure, bruh, I have all the time and money in the world *insert sarcasm”. I feel you, bro. Good news is that there are other cheaper ways of immersing yourself in different places: read and watch a movie or a show. They will take you on adventures you’ll otherwise most likely not live with people you probably will never meet IRL. Another more philosophical kind of travelling is called empathy. Put yourself in someone else’s shoes and try to think of this person’s life journey and try to understand them.

Be mindful. Be aware of what you are doing at all times. Do not let distraction take over your time. Rise up to every occasion. Be mindful of every chew, each step you take, and the work you are doing at the moment. Stay present.

Take care of your health. A healthy brain will have healthy thoughts. If your body is groggy, your mind will be foggy, and your ideas will be shitty. The world needs great ideas, and they will come to you if you eat healthy food, work out, and make time to meditate or relax.

Stay curious, flexible, and healthy to improve your creative thinking. Society will thank you for making their lives better with cooler food, music, and activities and robots…will most likely not say anything to you.

If you have any other tips, please share them with the rest of us.