Contrary to popular beliefs, thinking hard will not help if you’re trying to come up with creative ideas. If you want to come up with ideas, your brain need to be in a state of relaxation. Think of the zen master sitting quietly on the top of the mountain.
So how can you go about doing it? One way is to go for a walk. Just walk quietly by yourself. Try doing it. When you’re walking by yourself, you will realize that you will start to think clearly. Thoughts will flow. And at the same time, you would have also burned a few calories. Talk about killing two birds with one stone.
The next activity that you can try is to meditate. The more common use of meditation is for us to train our mind so that we can improve our self-control and increase our inner peace. However, we can also use meditation to produce creative ideas. How? When you are meditating, instead of abandoning your intrusive thoughts, you welcome them instead. Once an idea comes to your mind, write them down on a notebook in front of you, then go back to your meditation. The last time I did this, I had 6 new ideas in 5 minutes.
All big accomplishments, like conquering Mount Everest and the moon landings, started off with just a spark of an idea. Never stop thinking. As Henry Ford said,
“Thinking is the hardest work there is, which is probably the reason why so few engage in it.”