The first thing we usually do in the morning after a good sleep is to reach up and stretch ourselves, extend our bodies and muscles in an outward direction. This helps us to increase our circulation and warm up our body. Continued deliberate stretching helps us to become more limber and flexible.
Stretching our minds can have a similar effect. By extending our thoughts and working through various challenges, we are giving our minds an opportunity to stretch its capabilities and grow. We can stretch our minds by trying something new, reading something a bit more complex, or working through a project or problem that require us to brainstorm, analyze, and think critically.
The more we reach and stretch with our minds the more ideas that seem to flow. Entertaining new ideas often bring joy. How does your body feel after it has been stretched? Does it feel a bit more relaxed and limber? Stretching your mind opens up channels of possibilities when you entertain new thoughts and use your imagination.
Have you ever thought about other uses for common items, such as a paper clip? This is a simple and easy strategy to expand your mind. I enjoy stretching myself as an artist and as a writer by trying new techniques, materials, and topics. By introducing new methods and materials to my creative work that would otherwise be overlooked by traditionalists, (such as applying a concept map to plan my writing instead of using an outline or using old squashed blueberries as a coloring medium) I am able to develop and grow in my field.
What new things can you introduce into your craft? If you enjoy cooking what ingredients or techniques could you introduce or try? As an athlete, how could you level up your routine? If you are a teacher, what other ways might you engage your students? As a parent, what other methods could you try with your children? As a professional, what strategies could you apply to increase or improve your skill-set? Each of us have it within us to stretch ourselves, our abilities and our talents. Brainstorm some ideas and then give it a try. See how you grow and develop. When we take ourselves to the next level, we feel accomplished, successful, and happy.
All rights reserved. ©2016 by A.K. Orobko