I’m an engineer by trade and an inventor at heart. I’ve been tinkering and inventing for as long as I can remember. I’ve been fortunate enough to see many of my inventions come to life and used by people all over the world. I often get asked how I come up with ideas. I follow these five simple things daily to get my creative juices flowing.
Take a Walk in Nature
My daughter and co-founder, Shari, and I take a walk every morning before we get heavy into the workday. This mile walk is on a trail on my property where we are submerged in nature and away from computers, office lights and busy distractions. This gives us time to clear our heads of the endless task lists that keep running through them and just talk and bounce ideas off each other. It also centers us and gets us ready for what’s ahead. It’s the perfect way to start the day.
Keep an Idea Journal
Admittedly, I’m not the most organized person. It’s not how I’m wired nor how my brain works. However, I always jot my ideas down in a journal (sometimes on a sheet of scratch paper, but I wouldn’t recommend that – too easy to misplace) when they come to me. This gives me a chance to revisit them and expand upon them whenever time allows.
Take a Power Nap
Taking a 15-minute power nap each day gives your brain a chance to reboot. Research shows that power naps help enhance memory and boost creativity. At my age, both are a plus. It’s also been proven to improve your mood, help curb your appetite, improve your mental and physical performance, and reduce stress. I take a power nap in the early afternoon.
Take Time to Browse the Aisles
Shari and I take regular trips to Walmart and Home Depot. We walk every aisle and study what’s on the shelves. We look closely at what the product is, how it’s made, how it works, the price point, etc. This helps generate new ideas for inventions, gives us ideas for materials to use, and so much more. We often buy things as well to combine, take apart, and play with – physically touching an item also helps fuel my creativity.
While I’m known to flip through the channels on occasion, I typically make sure I watch the news, QVC and HSN, and Shark Tank. This is a great way to see what’s on the market, what’s selling and what’s a flop. In addition, I often get ideas on how to improve on an idea or invent something completely new. While I don’t advocate hours of mindless TV watching (you should be out there inventing and creating), some shows are definitely beneficial to get you inspired.
Ron Hunt,Co-Founder & Inventor