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Our nation-wide transition back to the office can come with some unexpected hurdles.
While we guiltlessly spent slow afternoons working from our couches, walking the dog or planning fantastical home improvement projects?
Being bored at the office is a totally different thing, (but it can also be a great thing).
Related: Want to Stay Innovative Post-Pandemic? Try Serendipitous Idea Generation
Learn from the littler versions of us
If there is one silver lining from COVID-19, it may well have to do with the enforced empty spaces and the resulting time we all had. It is the most fertile area for creativity to grow.
You can see this with children.
When they are pushed into overly structured play or never allowed to be inactive, their creativity diminishes. Kids are natural creators who can work within the perimeters of their environment. Throughout the pandemic, we’ve seen parents impose their own discomfort with boredom onto their children by trying to fill up all of the free time that used to be occupied by extracurricular activities or camp.
Related: 3 Reasons Why Walking Boosts Creativity
Let the mind wander
Busyness isn’t always the answer.
It’s pretty universally accepted that the most impactful actions are usually tied to innovative thinking. Those “ah ha” moments are, in turn, likely to occur while alone and the brain is allowed to browse.
This life philosophy is embodied in the toy I spent years developing: Clixo.
Without a detailed instruction manual, kids are inspired to just click around and get comfortable with the play system. They’re invited to experiment, without pressure, and return to recreate. This sets the stage for happy accidents and happier discoveries.
Even if you don’t want to use a physical tool to prompt this kind of thinking, this principle holds true. In the board room, the boredom can make for more mental flexibility to deal with uncertainty. It reduces the stress of having planned something and having those wishes get thrown out the window because of something you didn’t expect.
Leaving space for emptiness prompts prospective. Empty your brain for an hour and just follow your imagination. You may be surprised at what insights lie ahead.
Related: Tips to stimulate your creativity and improve your business