Moving into flow: 5 ways physical activity boosts your creative energy

Ever notice how your “Eureka” moments usually happen when you’re on the go and out of the office? It’s hard to find flow in a cubicle. And there’s a good reason for that. You’re sitting in a box. Next time you’re feeling stuck and your mind seems as blank as your screen, remember this: studies show body movement can unlock creative ways of thinking—no matter what kind of problem you’re trying to solve. Here’s how to use physical activity to get out of a rut and get your imagination in motion.

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I worked from a different space every day this week: Here’s what I found.

Innovation is about what you produce. But it’s also about how you produce it. No matter what your job title is, you are likely to have multiple roles and activities that contribute to your work product—from planning to concepting to collaborating to presenting. The right workspace for the right task can boost energy and creativity—by providing both context and constraints. Here’s what I tried this week and how it worked for me.

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Take that negative feedback in stride with these 5 tips

After days, if not weeks or months, of trashing through ideas and then carefully refining your work, you send your client or manager a product that positively shines. But instead of commending you for your creative genius, they respond in a far more maddening manner. Maybe they dash off a terse “I don’t like it” or send back a long list of overly prescriptive change requests or reply with a vague and confusing request to make it “pop.” Whichever it is, you’ve just received some pretty terrible feedback.

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Your most creative time of day isn’t when you think it is

All of us are governed by our own internal clocks, or circadian rhythms, that determine when we’re wide awake and when we need toothpicks to keep our eyes open. We tend to think that we’re at our best during our peak hours: Night owls’ hoots are pitch-perfect in the evening and larks catch the most worms early in the day. But when it comes to creativity, we may be getting it all wrong.

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8 ways to give better feedback to creatives

Even the most skilled creative team will occasionally miss the mark. Maybe their aim was slightly off, or you perhaps you were looking at totally different targets. Providing useful feedback can help everyone realign and pull the project’s objective into sharper focus. But helping them draw the best version out of their creative quiver can be a challenge. You want to be precise without micromanaging, kind without being condescending, and direct but not dismissive. With all these fine lines to walk, how do you make sure your feedback sparks forward momentum and doesn’t derail the project? The following tips will help ensure you and your creative colleagues are communicating effectively, so that you end up with a final product everyone is proud of.

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