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Creative Soup for the Soul

Creative Soup for the Soul

September 25, 2014 0 Comments

If you’ve ever attended Creative Mornings NYC, a breakfast lecture series that caters to the creative community, then you know of its magnetic appeal (and free admission!) that keeps attendees and volunteers yearning for more month after month.

In early September I attended my first Creative Mornings session with guest speaker Adam Alter, author of New York Times best seller Drunk Tank Pink and associate professor of psychology at New York University. Alter discussed color associations and how their subtle cues in our environment shape human behavior and decision making subconsciously. All of his talk of how pink jail cells calm inmates and a study that suggests wearing a red shirt could get ladies free drinks on Saturday night (yes, he said that) had me thinking – what other external inspirations can we explore to influence how we think, feel and behave?

Simply by attending Creative Mornings in September I allowed myself to exit my comfort zone and engage in something new. [One of my favorite things: guests wore name tags asking the question, “If you wrote a book, what would it be about?” (Mine was advice)] Let’s take a look at some other ways we can go beyond the boundaries of familiarity to enhance your abstract thinking:

  1. Take your exercise routine by surprise: This is not just another post advising you to get moving. I’m advising you to take it a step further, mentally, and move your exercise routine away from its current level of comfort. Used to doing cardio all the time? Try something calming, like yoga. Already a yoga buff? Try kickboxing for a more aggressive experience. Not only will you feel energized but you may notice some added relief from negative influencers that have been causing you stress.
  2. Get your hands dirty – in a book: Take the poor man’s vacation and see how rich it can be. Grab a bean bag and leave your web-connected devices behind because research indicates that reading for just 30 minutes a day, offline, can improve concentration and reduce stress. Without the added distractions, you have a higher bandwidth for fresh new thinking.
  3. Be surrounded by people you admire: Mingle at a conference or speaker series. Call a friend of a friend to grab a bite if you heard that they are working on an interesting new project. In other words, reach out and attempt collaboration. If you like somebody or projects they are working on, surround yourself with that person or activity. When forming connections, the worst anybody can say is “no,” but the benefits that can follow are limitless.

In the spirit of keeping minds fresh, I encourage you to venture beyond the normalcies of your everyday routine, as I did by attending Creative Mornings NYC. Seat yourself in a new environment and allow your surroundings to influence how you think, feel and behave. The interesting part is the effect it will have on your conscious and subconscious mind.

To register for the next Creative Mornings seminar in NYC, please click here.

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