Tag Archives: how to

Ways to become more creative

My whole life, I’ve thought of myself as a creative person: I was a writer, I was a reader, and I had a crazy imagination. One day all of that went away. Technology started dominating my life to the point where I had no real use for my imagination anymore. I didn’t read or write or do anything remotely creative for a while because I felt like I had such a mental block in my brain.

This semester, for my Marketing minor, I had to take Marketing 101: Creativity and Innovation. In just the few weeks that we’ve been back at school, this class has really helped me open my mind back up and let the creativity back in again.

I’m sure I’m not the only one who has ever suffered from a creative block so I’m going to share a few tips that have really helped me out.

1) Stop writing boring notes

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“Shut off the laptop, turn of the television, and step away from your phone. Instead of staring at a screen all day, read a book or draw a picture.”

We’re all so conditioned to write our notes in perfectly straight, black inked lines. This standard formula definitely hinders creativity. In class, we were instructed to get an unlined notebook and colored pens and pencils to take class notes in. Because of this, we’re able to create colorful mind maps and it really helps think out of the box.

2) Say everything that comes to your mind (within reason)

The most helpful thing I’ve learned all semester is that you have to fail in order to succeed. That means if you have a thought, say it. This can apply to anything in life, but it will especially apply if you’re doing a group project and want to share an idea, but are afraid of sounding stupid. If you can get over your fear of failure then it’ll be a million times easier to truly be creative.

3) Turn off the electronics

Shut off the laptop, turn of the television, and step away from your phone. Instead of staring at a screen all day, read a book or draw a picture. Actively using your imagination this way is like exercise for the brain. Creativity is very “use it or lose it”. If you don’t keep your brain functioning on a high level then it won’t work when you really need it to.

Everyone is born into the world with an active imagination and the ability to be creative. This is why children have imaginary friends and can play with dolls for hours. Along the way, the rigidness of the school system, stress over every day life, and technological advances shut out the creative parts of our brain until they barely work anymore. The good news is that you can always get your creativity back. You just have to be willing to break out of your comfort zone and think outside the box. Once you achieve this, you can do anything.

Highlanders Anonymous: The how-to edition

“How can I spend less money?”

The number one way to save money (according to no real statistics) is to make a budget. I’m not just talking about a yearly or monthly budget either. No. I mean a weekly and daily budget. If you want to have control over your hard-earned money, you’ve got to strategize.

You can be strict with your budget and have fun too. The best way is to be realistic. If you know you’re going to buy food at school and go shopping every Friday,factor those things in. Making a plan doesn’t mean you can’t do things. What you can do is be more informed, so you’ll know how much you can spend at the mall. Budgeting is smart, no matter how old you are. This will reduce a lot of stress in your life. Knowing your limitations is important.

“How can I learn to cook for myself?”

There are many ways to learn how to cook. I suggest finding the most fun way for you. You can watch cooking shows, if you’re a visual learner and want some inspiration. Another way is to buy a cookbook or look at recipes online. Follow the instructions exactly if you’re not sure what you’re doing. You can improvise after you’ve got the basics down. Cook alone or with friends, whichever suits you.

“How do I get a good night’s sleep?”

Be aware of your health and state of mind. It may be harder to fall asleep if you have a lot on your mind. To wind down, you should get away from electronics and bright screens that stimulate your brain and keep you awake. I suggest reading a book, conveniently placed near your bed. Also, make sure not to eat too close to bed–it’s not good for your metabolism! Make yourself comfortable and relaxed.

“How do I learn a new language?”

To learn a new language, there’s nothing better than practice. The more time you put into learning the basic structure of a language and practicing  vocabulary, the better results you’ll see. Although it can be a struggle at first, try and integrate this new language as a part of your daily life. The more the language is used practically in your day to day, the easier it’ll be to remember to go back and work on your weaknesses and get better. Another really helpful thing is to speak to native speakers of the language. You can do this through language-learning sources, online or you can even get a pen pal.

Kicking the hangover

If you were one to participate in the Quadfest festivities this past weekend, you probably suffered from one of two things – a hangover or citation.  The cops were in rare form this past weekend for the anticipation of the infamous Quadfest.  It turned out to be nothing short of an absurd amount of cops and zero fun.  However, if you were able to find your own safe fun at a close friend’s house you might currently be suffering from a hangover, which is never any fun. Continue reading Kicking the hangover