According to a new study, people who exercise regularly are more creative than those who don’t, and hitting the gym can measurably boost your ability to think outside the box. While we certainly don’t disagree with these findings — who hasn’t experienced a creative breakthrough in the middle of yoga class? — we also know that you need more than a daily elliptical session to stay inspired. If you’re in a rut or in need of creativity boost but don’t feel like hitting the gym (or even leaving your couch), don’t worry, you’ve got options. Here are a whole bunch of weird, wonderful ways to boost your creativity, personally tested and approved not by science, but by us. Hey, whatever works!
1. Having calorie-burning sex.
2. Talking to that kooky lady who brings her parrot to Starbucks.
3. Making new outfits out of old clothes.
4. Organizing your junk drawer.
5. Watching a Nova documentary on Netflix.
6. Asking your grandma to tell you a racy story from her youth.
7. Looking at old magazines from the 80’s and 90’s (or 60’s and 70’s, whatever floats your boat).
8. Going record shopping.
9. Yard sales. Enough said.
10. Buying yourself a giant bouquet of fresh flowers and putting it on your desk.
11. Drawing/doodling while sitting in a long meeting.
12. Trying a new drink with lunch, preferably something with tapioca gummies in it.
13. Going to a thrift store and trying to assemble the most eccentric outfit you can.
14. Opening a book of poetry to a random page.
15. Taking public transportation by choice.
16. Wandering around Costco, looking for action.
17. Making a meal without a recipe.
18. Strolling around a farmers’ market.
19. People-watching at the park…or anywhere there’s a crowd.
20. Taking a different route to work.
21. Browsing at a new age bookstore.
22. Sitting at the counter of a greasy diner, ordering a coffee, and introducing yourself to the waitress.
23. Writing down ridiculous snippets of overheard conversations.
24. Trolling the internet for ridiculous animal GIFs.
25. Setting your alarm 10 minutes earlier so you can write down your dreams.
26. Vowing to take an artsy Instagram photo of the next interesting thing you see.
27. Taking an extra long shower to daydream.
28. Meditating — even if it’s just for two minutes a day.
29. Keeping an “ideas” list on your iPhone.
30. Watching a yodeling tutorial and giving it your best effort.
31. Taking a looooooong walk with no destination.
32. Looking through old notebooks/journals/sketchbooks.
33. Acting on a weird impulse, like calling your best friend from second grade just because she popped into your head.
34. Searching YouTube for a random subset of videos you didn’t know existed.
35. Listening to your favorite album from high school.
36. Closing the computer and writing/drawing with a pen and paper instead.
37. Falling into a Wikipedia k-hole about antimatter, sleep paralysis, and unsolved Hollywood murders.
38. Cruising through Craigslist (especially the Missed Connections ads).
39. Attempting to recreate a hairstyle from Pinterest.
40. Answering weird, disturbing “would you rather” questions.
[Photo from Shutterstock]