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Business - Expert Roundups

How to Come Up With Creative Ideas in the Generative AI Era

There are many benefits to creative thinking when it comes to business. In an era where generative AI is reshaping the creative landscape, we sought out the wisdom of founders and directors to discover analog and hybrid strategies for inspiration. From embracing Embodiment Theory to blending analog brainstorming with AI, explore the top five unique methods they recommend for sparking creativity in today’s digital world.

Embrace Embodiment Theory for Creativity

Alex LaDouceur, Co-Founder, Webineering
Alex LaDouceur, Co-Founder, Webineering

In this era of AI, I want to highlight the importance of Embodiment Theory in fostering creativity. This theory explores the integral role of the body in the creative process, emphasizing how the brain and body work together as part of a larger cognitive ecosystem.

Embodiment Theory suggests that our emotions often have physical manifestations, like a tightness in the chest when we feel anxious. By connecting with our bodies, becoming grounded and present, we tap into a state conducive to creative flow. The body acts much like an instrument, sending signals that, when heeded, can lead to profound creative insights.

One practical way to enhance creativity through this approach is by engaging in physical activities outdoors. For example, taking walks has been shown to significantly boost creative thinking. Adopting open, expansive postures—like standing with arms wide—can also spur original and imaginative thinking. Experimenting with different physical movements and immersing ourselves in new sensory experiences while pondering a problem can be incredibly beneficial.

Developing routines that strengthen the mind-body connection can be crucial for maintaining a steady flow of creativity. Regular movement, especially daily, is key. For instance, taking a 40-minute walk in nature can induce a state of flow conducive to generating new ideas. It’s vital to walk without distractions like music or podcasts and to fully engage with our sensory experiences. The mind extends beyond our brains; it is deeply embodied through our senses.

Alex LaDouceur, Co-Founder, Webineering

Incorporate Playful Spaces and Routines

Precious Abacan, Marketing Director, Softlist
Precious Abacan, Marketing Director, Softlist

Personally, my approach is to build playful spaces into your creative routine. Utilizing gamification can significantly enhance your ability to conceptualize, possibly even surpassing AI! The ability to play is essential not just for our emotional well-being and mental health, but also for our capacity to innovate and create. I believe that play is a natural state we often deny ourselves as we grow older. It’s fascinating how many successful creative routines involve allowing the brain to revert to this playful state.

The time of day also plays a critical role. It’s notable how many creative individuals are early risers and prefer to work in the morning. There’s real value in dedicating time to creativity at the start of your day when your mind is most like a blank canvas and your inner critic hasn’t yet had a chance to interfere. Make space for creativity before diving into daily tasks like checking emails and calendars.

Precious Abacan, Marketing Director, Softlist

Manage Your Inner Critic

Rizki Kadir, Automotive Writer and Software Engineer, Our Own Cars
Rizki Kadir, Automotive Writer and Software Engineer, Our Own Cars

It’s simple, in my experience: manage and control your inner critic. One of the biggest obstacles any creative thinker encounters is their own internal critique. We all have it—a committee of voices inside our heads that churn out numerous reasons why an idea won’t work and pinpoint where others might find faults. This internal scrutiny can kill creative ideas before they even fully develop.

In the age of AI, our inner critics are armed with even more data and insights, encouraging us to activate the Lateral Prefrontal Cortex to adjust our thinking based on external expectations and information. It becomes increasingly easy to dismiss ideas prematurely, and tempting to settle for the most apparent solutions. To maintain our creative edge, it’s crucial to recognize and consciously counter this tendency. If you truly value creativity, you must create the mental space for it to flourish.

Rizki Kadir, Automotive Writer and Software Engineer, Our Own Cars

Explore Vintage Out-of-Print Books

Victor Hsi, Founder, UGC Creator
Victor Hsi, Founder, UGC Creator

One creative analog method is to explore vintage books that are out of print.

They are often affordable to acquire in second-hand bookstores and are often overlooked and forgotten in the digital age.

They offer a unique insight into different times and ways of thinking, which can spark novel ideas when combined with today’s context.

Victor Hsi, Founder, UGC Creator

Blend Analog Brainstorming with AI

Daniel Bunn, Managing Director, Innovate
Daniel Bunn, Managing Director, Innovate

One effective way to develop creative ideas in the age of generative AI is to engage in brainstorming sessions that blend analog techniques with AI-generated insights. Start with traditional brainstorming methods, such as mind-mapping or free-writing, to generate a broad range of ideas. 

Then, AI tools can be used to refine and expand on these ideas, providing new perspectives and combinations that might not have been initially considered. This hybrid approach leverages the creative strengths of human intuition and AI’s expansive data analysis, resulting in innovative and well-rounded ideas.

Daniel Bunn, Managing Director, Innovate

Dennis Consorte helps startups and small cap public companies make an impact through digital marketing, publicity, and team building.