There’s nothing more fun than having fun while you’re writing. Enjoyment not only boosts our feel-good endorphins, it also enhances our creativity. Here are a few easy-to-use little tricks you can pull out of your kit bag on days when you need to rev up your writing motor:
Go green: Casting around for a clever solution to a problem? Try jotting down any ideas you have in green ink or change your computer font to green (I’m using aqua for this post!). What’s the big idea? Well, according to one study, green ink boosts creativity. Since we associate the color green with “go,” this color ink sends a message to our brains to “go for it!” when it comes to even seemingly “out-the-box” ideas, which could offer just the offbeat answer we need. In fact, people who were exposed to green text proved to be 30% more creative than those who read black or red text.
Ponder poetry: Reading unusual words and sentence structures in classical poetry — Shakespeare, for instance — activates the area of the brain where memories are stored. So if you’re working on something that draws on your own experience, taking some time to read poetry first might make your trip down memory lane smoother and more productive. Not to mention providing you with some provocative word choices!
Be bold: Getting your ideas down on paper using cursive handwriting increases “automatic flow” — letting one idea lead naturally to the next. Giving yourself a doodle break or taking even just a few minutes to write out your ideas by hand demands more of your right brain and is a proven right-brain creativity booster. It also zaps stress, making you feel happier, more relaxed — and more productive. The bigger the loops and flourishes you make with your pen or pencil, the more stress-free you’ll feel. I’m a big believer in this and write by hand all the time using a pen and teal ink.
Cultivate cute: According to a recent study, simply gazing at adorable, heart-warming photos — kittens, puppies, or babies — for even just a few minutes can sharpen your mental focus and jump-start your productivity (Check out BabyAnimalz.com). And if you take a brief break to watch a YouTube video of puppies playing or kittens cuddling, you’ll get a bonus: you’ll feel instantly happier and more relaxed. Live action clips of adorable action seem to give neurons a joy-boost!
To-go tip: Eat your spinach! Getting 310 mg. of magnesium every day from foods like spinach and potatoes can protect your ability to absorb and retain new information, because it helps preserve the connections between brain cells so they can communicate clearly and quickly with one another. So think ink, go green, and write on!