Yesterday I posted six questions to get you thinking about how you can come up with original discussion posts for your blog. Today I want to expand on the concept of creativity. We all want our blogs to be unique and offer our readers something they can’t get anywhere else. Sometimes, that’s our original voice or our thoughtful opinions. But sometimes we want to offer new things: new features, new posts, new ideas. If that’s where you want to head with your blog this year, try out some of these creativity exercises below.
In this short (6 min) TED talk, Shimpei Takahashi explains the word association game he uses to invent new toys. Looking for connections between seemingly unrelated things will help you come up with new ideas for your blog!
In this longer TED talk (27 min), Tim Brown introduces listeners to even more creativity exercises, focusing on the idea that playing can facilitate imagination. He also emphasizes the need to feel secure in taking risks, so make sure you settle down to brainstorm in a way you’re comfortable!
Freelance Writer Mariana Ashley suggests writing a comment on your favorite blog–but not posting it. Instead, you have to turn the topic into a post for your own blog. This exercise will get you started thinking about an idea but challenge you to make something meaty out of it, rather than leaving it as a comment.
Scientists believe that the color blue may boost creativity, while red can help people concentrate. If you’re feeling stuck in a rut, try changing your surroundings or just the background of your Word document and get creating!
Do you have a blogger friend (or just a friend familiar with your blog)? Try writing down some ideas from your brainstorming session and sharing them with someone else. Writer and artist Julie Niedlinger advocates this “idea switch” because someone else with fresh eyes might have some insights on how to take your ideas farther or even in an exciting new direction.
Take a Break
Sometimes great ideas some to you when you’re not trying to think of them. We’ve all had experiences coming up with amazing ideas while in the shower or half-asleep. So if you’re stuck, step away from the drawing board. Take some time to relax; try coloring or something else restful. You can also just surf the web or watch TV; you might be inspired by a news event or a cool article you run across. The best writers always have their eyes open!