The tin man followed the yellow brick road. No guarantees, but maybe one of the following brain lubricants ease you on down the road to Oz.
1. Get Going
That shiny, white monitor in your sterile, stuffy office often stares you down and acts like brain quicksand. Get out of there. Get on a bus, train, subway, in your car, or on a bike and the wheels may start spinning.
2. Get Curious
Ditch your tried and true resources. Read something you normally wouldn’t. Watch something you never have. Force-feed yourself something you suspect wouldn’t appeal to you. Be a discoverer.
3. Get Visual
Immerse yourself in photos, illustrations, paintings, sculpture, something from the world beyond words.
4. Get Tidy
Put your mind on the tedious task of tidying up. File. Clean. Straighten stuff up. Make lists. Unclutter your space and ideas may spill forth.
5. Get Social
Tweet. Talk. Wander through cyberspace with your eyes and ears open to anyone and anything.
6. Get Inspired
Got a bookcase full of dusty old classics? Crack one open. Try poetry. Hit Pinterest for inspirational quotes. There’s something about great thinkers that makes you think.
7. Get Goofy
Goofy, Winnie, Elmo, Nemo, Beavis, Bart, Bugs, Buzz Lightyear… doesn’t matter. Suspend your disbelief, march to a silly toon, and try living inside a crazier character for a spell.
8. Get Calm
Only the most practiced meditators actually succeed in clearing their mind, but it’s about the journey, not the destination. Try journeying into la-la land with soothing sounds, mantras or hypnotic musings. Who knows what will surface.
9. Get Naked
This one’s not ideal for the office, but at home it could be just the ticket. For me, a hot shower often proves to be a steamy little think tank.
10. Get Argumentative
You can do it. Be a big badass rebutter. Anywhere you look you’re bound to find something too silly, safe, or stupid to swallow. Push back.
11. Get Giggly
Laughter’s the best medicine for whatever ails you, including brain freeze. Fire up Cosby, Carlin, Rodney, Rickles, Ellen, Leno, Letterman or whichever comic tickles your fancy and try giggling instead of Googleing.
12. Get Over Yourself
Now here’s an idea: you don’t have to be the source of every idea. Hit a friend or family member up for ideas. Should that not work, steal one from a perfect stranger.
13. Get Fearless
What if there were no rules? No boundaries. No expectations. No consequences. What if you could do, say or write anything? It’s just an exercise, so fear not. Step outside of your comfort zone.
14. Get Unsatisfied
Did that crazy maniac inside you get too comfortable or train you to settle for the same old same old? Look at a satisfactory solution all over again and challenge it. Dismiss it. Flush it and find another path that may take you even further.
15. Get Buzzed
I’m not advocating breaking the law, but perhaps a safe and sane approach to killing a few brain cells could give birth to exciting new ideas. Just saying.
16. Get Young
With age comes a mindset to apply your experience and approach things a certain way. Think below your years. Revisit immaturity. Surround yourself with kids, Legos, tinker toys, and the good Dr. Seuss. The innocent age can be so liberating.
17. Get the Gospel
Grab the Good Book or something that brings out your spiritual side. I’ve never said it out loud, but I often find the pastor uncorks my cranium.
18. Get Inquisitive
It doesn’t hurt to ask. Ask questions. Ask for suggestions. Ask for feedback. Ask somebody something and you might get a point of view that points you in a new direction.
19. Get Historic
Perhaps your next big idea gets ignited from a blast from the past. Revisit a place, time, or figure and see if history holds the key.
20. Get to the Store
A stroll through the mall or strip center might be an interesting distraction. You’ll be bombarded with merchandising and marketing ideas.
21. Get Wild
Lions and tigers and bears, oh my! Hit a zoo, aquarium, animal shelter or even a jungle book. The animal kingdom might give you some wild ideas.
22. Get Scientific
Chemistry, biology, anatomy, physics… Take your pick. I’m thinking exploring the left brain might do the right side some good.
23. Get Stuffed
Cook. Bake. Eat. Something in the spice rack could be inspiring. Turn on all five senses.
24. Get Sweaty
Give your brain a break. Put your body in motion. Wear it out. I believe the brain will feel left out and come storming back.
25. Get to Bed
For me, when it’s dark, a light often comes on. Even if this doesn’t happen for you, sometimes you just have to give it a rest.
Do you have any ideas for generating ideas? This would be a great place to share them.