In today's fast-paced world, we are bombarded with information and distractions that can hinder our ability to think creatively. However, by intentionally repeating certain behaviors frequently, we can develop habits that foster an innovative mindset. Developing these habits takes patience, self-discipline, and a willingness to proactively block time for them in our busy lives.
Research shows that our daily actions are heavily influenced by the habits that govern our lives. Behavioral scientists suggest breaking down larger goals into smaller microhabits to make them easier to achieve. Lastly, don't forget about the importance of positive habits such as regular sleep, a healthy diet, and an organized schedule in promoting a productive and innovative mindset.
In today's world where the internet is constantly competing for our attention and habit formation doesn't offer shortcuts, experts advocate an old-fashioned approach of incremental progress and dedicated commitment towards developing habits. Whether it be through work relationships or mental health practices, developing positive habits can unlock your potential and lead to an innovative mindset.
Developing Habits To Foster An Innovative Mindset
Innovation is essential for companies to stay competitive in today's fast-paced business world. Developing an innovative mindset can be challenging, but it is not impossible. One easy step to nurturing unconventional thinking is to embed innovation into daily routines.
Innovation processes should be a continuous collaborative process that involves teams from different business functions and external business networks. Innovation centers can help facilitate this open innovation process by creating a space where employees can share ideas and work together on new projects. However, the harder part of developing an innovation mindset is turning thinking into action.
To embed innovation into a company's set of corporate values, leaders need to lead by example and make it clear that innovation thinking is valued and rewarded. This means that employees should be given the time and resources they need to experiment with new ideas, even if they do not always succeed. By making innovation a part of daily routines, organizations can develop habits that will foster an innovative mindset across the entire company.
Discover the Power of Intention Setting
Intention setting is a powerful habit category. They're quantifiable require concentration deliberation, and conscious thought. Charles Duhigg, author of "The Power of Habit," told us that habits are effortless behaviors that we don't fall into accidentally but rather intentionally form.
Developing a pleasurable habit like eating chocolate at 5 pm is effortless, but it may not be productive or innovative. On the other hand, intention setting requires patience, self-discipline, and effort. It takes 21 days to develop a habit, so use the time wisely.
Ximena Vengoechea, UX researcher and author of the forthcoming book "Listen Like You Mean It," added that reflecting on your day and tracking progress can help stay motivated and overcome inevitable roadblocks. So skip checking fame and prestige off your list of routines surface level goals for something meaningful by incorporating intention setting into your daily life.
Small Changes, Big Results: Try Nudging for Positive Habits
If you're trying to develop an innovative mind, nudging can be a great way to help you establish positive habits. Nudging is all about making small changes that have a big impact – and it's easy to do. If you want to start nudging yourself towards more creative thinking, start by taking some place practical steps. For example, try setting aside some time every day to think creatively; or make a habit of writing down your ideas as soon as they come to you. Over time, these small changes will add up and help you develop the habits you need to become more innovative.
1. Make a schedule.
Make a schedule to develop an innovative mind. Block regular times in your day to focus on creative thinking and problem-solving. Whether it's early morning, during lunch breaks, or in the evening after work, commit to a set time every day to exercise your innovation muscles.
By setting aside dedicated time for innovative thinking, you'll begin to expect results from yourself. You'll become more aware of your own thought processes and learn how to stimulate creative ideas on demand. Making a schedule is one of the most effective ways to build habits that lead to an innovative mindset. So take a look at your calendar and make time for innovation!
2. Set microhabits.
Set microhabits by making small, incremental adjustments to your daily routine. Keeping things simple is key when developing innovative habits. Take the time to move towards your final destination with small steps that lead you towards your goal. Read industry-related news by creating Google alerts for topics directly related to your career interests, prompting you to stay up-to-date and knowledgeable in your field.
Make sure to get quality sleep by avoiding blue light from screens, as it hampers your ability to have a good night's sleep. Keep your favorite books nearby at night so you'll be more likely to read before bed, helping you relax and unwind while also strengthening your mind. Use visual cues like tape or Post-it notes to remind yourself of important tasks or upcoming deadlines.
Lastly, show gratitude for the people around you by acknowledging their efforts and contributions. Thank a colleague today for their hard work or share a kind word with someone who has helped you along the way. These microhabits may seem small, but they can have a big impact on your overall mindset and success in developing an innovative mind.
3. Try temptation bundling.
"Try temptation bundling" is a technique coined by researcher Katie Milkman that aims to make obligatory tasks more enjoyable. It's fairly straightforward: practice bundling up a fun thing with a not-so-fun thing. Here's how it works: if you enjoy instant gratification activities like checking Instagram or listening to your favorite podcast series, bundle them up with something that you find less enjoyable, like running on the treadmill or filling out those boring spreadsheets.
In Milkman's study, researchers gave participants iPods loaded with audio novels and offered them exclusively at the gym. As a result, large participants' gym attendance increased. So why not try temptation bundling for yourself? The next time you have to do something you don't particularly enjoy, think of a fun activity that you can pair it with. This way, you'll be able to make even the most mundane tasks seem more enjoyable!
Breaking Down the Difference Between Routines and Habits
Nir Eyal, author of "Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products," once said that "life is told in the rituals we perform." However, it's important to understand that not all of our everyday behaviors are habits. In fact, some of them are just routines - and following routines can be bad advice for developing an innovative mind.
A routine involves a set of behaviors frequently done in a specific order. It's intentionally repeated over time, usually as part of a regularly performed routine phase. While routines can put tedious or unenjoyable tasks on autopilot and make sense for things like creating a to-do list, unlike habits, they require a concerted effort every day to complete. For example, intentionally waking up 10 minutes earlier each morning is a routine but not yet a habit - it still feels strange and needs to be formed by avoiding feeling bad for missing out on sleep.
On the other hand, habits are automatic actions triggered by cues in our daily lives. They're formed through repetition until they become unconscious responses. Developing good habits can help free up mental space and energy for more creative thinking instead of focusing on completing mundane tasks. So if you want to develop an innovative mind, focus on building healthy habits that support your goals instead of relying solely on routines that may feel like wasted effort.
Daily habits lead to long-term Impact
Developing innovative thinking is not a one-time activity but a continuous process. It requires developing daily habits that enhance one's creativity and problem-solving abilities. As McKinsey transformations show, the role model of managers who are creative and innovative can inspire their employees to do the same. By incorporating these models into our daily routine, we can develop habits that foster innovation.
One habit I have started sharing with others is seeking inspiration from different sources. Whether it's a Coursera class I've attended, a book I've read, or partners I've worked with, these inspirations guide me in turning innovation into reality. By being exposed to diverse perspectives and experiences, we can faster identify new opportunities for digital transformation or services that improve operations and customer experiences. This makes innovation less daunting and more accessible.
Innovation is immensely complex, but it doesn't have to be overwhelming. Developing an innovative mindset through daily habits will help us tackle some of the biggest challenges we face as individuals and organizations striving for a sustainable future. These habits will enable us to create new products and services that address classic business benefits companies seek while creating sustainable business models that benefit society as a whole. Let's start developing these habits today!
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you nurture unconventional thinking?
Nurturing unconventional thinking can be achieved by encouraging creativity, promoting curiosity, and creating an environment that values diverse perspectives.
What is the value of turning innovation into a habit?
Turning innovation into a habit can lead to continuous improvement and growth in personal and professional life. It allows individuals and organizations to stay ahead of the competition, adapt to changes, and create new opportunities for success.
Do your daily routines drive innovation?
Daily routines can drive innovation by establishing consistent habits and patterns that allow for creative thinking, problem-solving, and experimentation. However, it's important to also incorporate novelty and diversity in routines to avoid stagnation and promote new ideas.
How do you develop your employees' Innovation Skills?
Developing employees' innovation skills can be achieved through training, encouraging creativity, providing autonomy, fostering a culture of experimentation and risk-taking, and recognizing and rewarding innovative thinking.
How to develop good habits?
To develop good habits, start by setting clear goals and creating a plan to achieve them. Focus on building one habit at a time and make small changes consistently. Reward yourself for progress and stay accountable with friends or a mentor.