Since themes worked so well for me over the course of the 31-day blogging challenge last month, I'm sticking with it until the wheels fall off.
That's this week's theme because I'm often asked where I come up with my ideas. Most people ask with this weird look on their face as if I've lost my mind, and they are wondering if they should call someone in authority. Even my daughters say, "Who does things like that?" Not everyone appreciates that I think outside the box!
I've learned to let my mind run free and to appreciate the connections it makes. I've stopped judging the weirdness in my head. I embrace it. It's what makes me a bit different, and yes, a little strange. I can't imagine locking the silliness in a closet and never letting it come out to play. What a boring inner world that would be for me.
Embrace Your Inner Crazy
If you've ever talked to a small child, their minds leap to unknown places and make connections that are delightful. We lose that as we grow older. I can remember vividly the conversations I had with my girls when they were little.
Child: "Stay on the bed because sharks are in the water!"
Me: "Are we in a boat?"
Child: "Yes. Don't put your toes in. The sharks will eat your toes, but I have bananas. Baby sharks love bananas."
Me: "Fantastic. So we're safe as long as you have bananas for the baby sharks."
Child: "Baby sharks love them."
Me: "Right. I got that part. What happens if we run out?"
Child: *shrugs* "Then they eat us."
Someone tells us that we need to grow up, stop daydreaming and get serious. We lose the ability to let our imaginations breathe. It's like a muscle that needs stretching, or it atrophies. Our imagination makes intuitive leaps and connections for us. It's also how successful people are innovative in the business world.
3 Baby Steps to Stretching Your Imagination
You might not want to let the inner crazy have full reign, but let it out of the chains for a little bit. You might be surprised by the ideas and leaps in creativity your imagination will treat you to.
1. Instead of shutting down a wacky idea, write it down. At the end of a week, connect the wacky ideas into a mental image or story. Write down the story if it strikes you as interesting or humorous.
2. Ask yourself what would happen if...? It could be as simple as a question that makes you turn a picture on its side. What would happen if I colored my hair blue? What kind of conversations would I have with people? Think of three fake reasons why you HAD to dye it blue and imagine telling people.
3. Write down your dreams. I do this and love coming up with ways to incorporate my dreams into a story. Some dreams are incredibly bizarre, and I'd have to write science fiction for them to make sense while others are only slightly weird. Keep pen and paper by your nightstand or a laptop if you have one. (That middle of the night scrawl can be indecipherable in the light of day.)
Let your imagination out of its chains. Join me in the crazy.