What does it mean to be creative? Let me take you back to our kindergarten days when we ran around painting with our fingers or daydreaming in class or getting lost in our own fairytale world as we played “pretend”. As we got older, we classified ourselves by saying, “Oh no I’m not creative” if we aren’t painting a masterpiece or writing a novel. I am here to tell you that’s not the only way to be creative! Here are 5 ways to be more creative because hello, creativity is calling.

1. Change your mentality. The first step in being creative is having an open mind. You must tell yourself that you can be creative and that you can do anything you set your mind to. You cannot be afraid or hold back, even if you fail you still tried and that is enough. By having the mindset “I am creative” you will allow yourself the privilege to do so. Plus, creativity is fun!

2. Try something new! This is an obvious answer but it’s amazing what happens when you decide to take that step and try something. This could be looking at your work process and asking yourself, how can I try something new that would make me more efficient. Give it a try! Did you know that Steve Jobs took a calligraphy class in college which influenced the design of Apple? You never know unless you try.

3. Re-discover something that you loved as a child. Take a minute and think about something you loved to do as a child. Maybe I already mentioned it in the opening paragraph. Were you an avid reader? Did you have a lemonade stand? Did you build with Lego’s? Why not try doing these things again? For me, I loved coloring, so I have some coloring books lying around when I need a little break from my life; and I feel so much better after because it just feels good to be a kid again. That’s a special key that most forget is the things we did as a child were worry-free, so take some time to feel that again. Feel the possibility and the creativity.

4. Keep a record of creative ideas. Write down the creative ideas that you have. You can keep a journal or even just add it to the notes section on your phone. Start recording some ideas that pop into your head, it might be something you want to try in the future or a new work process or a new way to gain more customers, or it could just be a screenshot of a piece of art you like or a puzzle you want to buy. It could be an innovative way to show your spouse or partner or friend how much you care. If you keep a record of it, you are more likely to remember it. And when you go back and reflect, you will feel inspired to continue being creative.

5. Share your creativity with others. You don’t have to be creative alone (unless you really want to). Creativity can and should be shared with others. Find a friend, family member, or colleague that can be a creativity buddy. Someone who will remind you of the ways you are creative, or share in new experiences, or help you follow through on being creative. Consider inviting a friend, family member or teammate to join you in a new idea or improving something.

These are only 5 ways for you to start being creative or using your imagination to innovate. As a part of creativity or using your imagination, you can change and adjust them according to your plan and goals. You have the freedom to discover the great opportunities that await you in the creative and imaginative realm. Don’t limit yourself. Reach for the stars, the galaxies, and even the heavens. While this practice can have a significant impact on you, personally, being creative at work can also be a huge asset to your team or organization. So, start with yourself, and carry it forward. Creativity and the use of your imagination are calling, will you answer?

Danielle Moran, Becoming Your Best Team Member