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Generate new ideas by letting your mind wander

Everywhere you look, people are glued to their phones—in the elevator, in restaurants, and unfortunately while they’re driving down the road.

Phone preoccupation has a cost. For one thing, it limits time and the opportunity to mine your subconscious for ideas. If you’re looking for ways to supercharge your creativity, set your phone aside and let your mind wander. Comedy writer David Evans shared this tip on a weekly teleseminar hosted this month by Stephanie Chandler, CEO of the Nonfiction Authors Association.

If you want to generate more ideas, devote time to accessing your subconscious where much of the creative process is at work. You’ll think of ideas, plot twists, and answers to your writing dilemmas by letting your mind wander, says Evans. He calls it, “wandering time.”

Evans talked about what makes comedy—An element of surprise for one thing. But to get there, you need new ideas. Evans started out writing greeting cards. His first big job in comedy was writing for “The Monkees,” a 1960s television show, in which he won an Emmy Award for Best Comedy. He went on to write 19 “Love American Style” television scripts, as well as other shows.

Embrace your wandering mind
Once you divert your attention to your phone, email, texting, or social media, you’ve kicked yourself out of your “wandering mind.” Take advantage of opportunities to let your mind roam: on the bus, at the doctor’s office, or while waiting in lines.

Chandler, who writes about book marketing and publishing, has experienced the power of wandering time. She was struggling to come up with a title for one of her books. “It hit me when I was standing in line at Starbucks,” she said. “If I was on my smart phone, I wouldn’t have thought of it.”

Access magical thinking
The creative process is magical and mysterious. Does it ever seem as though sentences and ideas pop up out of nowhere? Your ideas will bubble to the surface. You just have to create a connection to your subconscious, Try these techniques:

Create a routine – a signal to your subconscious to come out and play. Write every day or at least on some sort of regular schedule. Work on your manuscript, write poetry, or free write.

Allow for quiet time when you wake up from sleeping and before you go to bed. Turn the lights down and devices off. Not only will you sleep better, which is conducive to creativity, you’ll be closer to your dream state.

How do you access your creative mind? Share your tips and experiences in a comment below.

Stephanie Chandler hosts free weekly teleseminars on Wednesdays featuring authors and book marketing guests who share their perspective on writing and marketing nonfiction books.

She is also the author with Karl Palachuk of The Nonfiction Book Publishing Plan: The Professional Guide to Profitable Self-Publishing.

NFAA members write many genres of nonfiction books, including business, self-development, health and fitness, memoir, history, how-to, science, creative nonfiction and reference books. Learn more about Chandler’s group at https://nonfictionauthorsassociation.com/.

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