Three left-field ideas for your next brainstorming session

March 8, 2023 | Jarrod Saxton

In our Foundations course, we teach people the logic and critical thinking tools they need to clarify and define problems and make sound decisions. But what surprises many of our participants is that as the course progresses, we begin to encourage them to think outside the box and become more creative.

Why is creativity important? One reason is that we are often dealing with complex problems that do not have clear-cut solutions. To find a solution, we need to approach these problems from multiple angles and consider a range of potential solutions. This requires us to tap into our creative abilities and generate a wide range of ideas.

There are many ways we go about this, here are a few that come to mind:

1. Brainstorming without filters

We encourage people to write big lists of ideas without any judgement. The more ideas we write down without qualifying them, the more we train our brains to let loose with creativity, and the more likely we are to find a solution that works.

2. Lateral brainstorming

We encourage people to write down lists of ideas that are not even solutions, just to get them out of their heads. Ideas that are not obviously relevant to our issue may just spark the next solution. It is like writing out a song that’s stuck in your head, the lyrics of the song might take you down a different angle of possible solutions.

3. Brainstorming the impossible

We encourage people to write out ideas that sometimes seem impossible to implement. The idea is that the impossible may spark a variation of that solution that is possible or doesn’t defy the laws of physics. While we might not be able to build a time machine and travel to a future where anything is possible, but we can foster innovation right now.

But, above all, have fun!

Problems can carry a sense of frustration and negativity with them, and it can be easy for these feelings to come up when addressing your problems. But that’s no way to find solutions. When we are in a frustrated, negative, or over-analytical state, it impedes our creativity.

As Einstein once said, “We can’t solve a problem with the same level of thinking that created it.” So, once we have clearly defined and mapped out our problem with logic, we should do a complete 180 and go in the exact opposite direction when it comes to finding solutions. Have fun with it!

This helps to make the process of problem-solving more enjoyable and light-hearted. When you’re having fun and being creative, it’s easier to come up with new ideas and approaches to the problem.

So my advice for you today is once you know what your problem is and you’re looking for solutions, make it light, fun, and groovy baby! Put on some good music, play around with possibility, and write some nonsense down – your problem won’t know what hit it.

If you want to obliterate some dull and frustrating problems with some fun and creative solutions, you know what to do! Join our Foundations course and unleash your creative potential.  Sometimes the only thing standing in the way of you and your next breakthrough is a bit of fun!