Solve Tough Problems By Inverting Them

Often, we have so many options that it’s tough to choose among them (this is also known as the paradox of choice). If you’re at a crossroads and need to make a tough decision, it can help to understand what you want by examining what you don’t want first.

'It's Good To Be Uncomfortable'

Nobody really likes to be uncomfortable, but it’s a necessity for creative living. As animator Mark Phillips reminds us, when you get comfortable, you stop creating new things.

Give Your Ideas Time To Percolate So You Bring Your Best To The Table

It can be exciting when you have a eureka moment. However, rather than spilling the beans on your ideas quickly, you may be better off writing them down and giving them some more time to quietly develop in your mind to mature and complete themselves.

Switch Tasks To Refresh Your Perspective When Problem Solving

While persistence is a great virtue, some types of problems call for solutions that simply can’t be developed through grinding. If you find yourself stuck on a problem or creative challenge, switch tasks after 15 minutes to take your conscious mind off it.

Find A Devil's Advocate To Argue Against Your Ideas Early

Anyone who’s watched an episode of House knows the value of constructively poking holes in an idea. When you have an idea for a project, find someone who’s willing to argue against it early on to refine it.

C.S. Lewis On Reading Literature: Those Who Don't Inhabit A Tiny World

It should come as no surprise that C.S. Lewis, the world-renowned author of The Chronicles of Narnia series, believes that everyone should read books. Reading gives you the ability to see an infinite number of perspectives all while remaining yourself.

'Coming Up With An Idea Is An Easy Thing. It's Hardest To Put It Down'

We’re all full of ideas for things, but as Twilight Zone creator Rod Serling reminds us, coming up with an idea is easy — it’s turning it into something is the hard part.

Avoid 'Dummy-Proofing' To Encourage Better Ideas And Engaged Workers

Whether you’re an employer or just trying to wrangle people on a project, it’s tempting to make things as simple as possible. However, as Netflix CEO Reed Hastings suggests, “if you dummy-proof the process, you only get dummies to work there.”

Ask 'What Problem Am I Solving?' To Refine Your Projects

Anyone who has ever lived through a Facebook update knows that sometimes projects move forward even if people don’t want them. While you’re working on yours, stop periodically to ask if what you’re working on solves a problem people have.

Leaving Your Desk At Lunch Can Boost Your Creative Problem Solving

We’ve talked about how eating lunch at your desk could make you less productive, but there are other benefits to eating elsewhere. Eating away from your desk could free up some brain power and give you more “aha!” moments when you’re trying to solve a problem.