When we're young we use our imagination all day long, daydreaming, playing with imaginary friends, creating wonderful worlds in which to live and play in wonderment. Yet increasingly as we get older we scold ourselves when we catch our minds wandering, feel embarrassed about daydreaming and no longer allow our imaginations to run away with us.
Don't you think it's sad to neglect the power of daydream? Surely using your imagination to picture the life of your dreams is still a useful tool to have in the armoury?
Now I'm not saying that we as adults should still spend our days with our imaginary childhood friends, but I do think that the power of imagination can have an incredibly powerful impact on our lives, helping us to achieve great heights if we just free ourselves long enough to do so. Plus research shows that our minds naturally wander about half of the time each day anyway - so why are we fighting it!
Using your imagination has been proven to have great benefits in adult life. For example it can greatly enhance the power of your memory, allow you to have greater empathy for those around you and alongside that it's obviously a wonderful tool for self-discovery and adventure.
From a business or career perspective being able to use your imagination to put yourself into the minds of your customers or to engage and empathise with employers and colleagues is a hugely powerful tool. Plus by letting your mind wander you will often find yourself subconsciously mapping out your next move, activating your brain to plan the next step you should take and how you might go about taking it. So many things can be achieved by allowing the mind to relax and think beyond the structured adult world. Believe that if you can imagine it then you can achieve it.
Just think of all of the life changing achievements, steps forward in technology, literary characters, music, film and all of the boundless other new ideas that grace our worlds every day. All the product of someones imagination, of someone daring to dream. For example - without J.K Rowling tapping into her imagination there would be no Harry Potter, one of the most iconic characters and imaginary worlds created in recent years. She created a whole new world purely out of her own creativity and thank goodness that she did!
So bearing that in mind, or within my imagination, for today here are four suggestions for kicking your adult daydreams back into gear. Why not give them a go over the weekend and let me know what difference (if any) it makes to your day. Perhaps actively encouraging ourselves to mentally picture new adventures, ideas and ways of thinking will lead to an exciting new thought or experience for the week - and hey that's got to be something worth getting excited by.
1. Step outside of your normal routine. Wake up and pick something entirely different to do for the day. Something achievable but totally opposite to what you had planned and that you've never done before or very, very rarely do.
2. Write a short story or a poem. Most of us probably haven't tried to put pen to paper and create something entirely new and completely made up through story or verse since we were asked to do so at school. Give it a go and see what happens.
3. Observe. Take a break for a few minutes, go and sit somewhere and people watch for a while (in a normal way obviously!) take in the sounds, sights, smells of everything around you. Soak it all in, in a way that you would never normally get the time to do whilst running around busily in your everyday life. Observation is a powerful way to stimulate your mind and imagination whilst also remaining in the present. People are endlessly fascinating and by doing this you'll remember why.
4. Share your ideas and creative imagination with others. So often being around other creative or equally inspiring people is what will spark something new within yourself. If you're able then create a forum in which to share and bounce ideas around with others. Witness what happens as one idea sparks another then another and another.
Let me know how you get on re-sparking your inner creative and the power of your imagination - and most importantly have fun! The possibilities are limitless as is your ability to achieve great things if you just dare to believe that you can.
For further inspiration this article here is fantastic and something I hope you will enjoy.
Farewell for now and have a wonderful weekend. Tune in next week when I'll be bringing you the first What Now Blog giveaway - exciting!