Twenty Rules of Thumb for Creativity

1. The best way to get great ideas is to get lots of ideas and throw the bad ones away.

2. Create ideas that are fifteen minutes ahead of their time...not light-years ahead.

3. Always look for a second right answer.

4. If at first you don't succeed...take a break!

5. Write down your ideas before you forget them!

6. If everyone says you're wrong, you're one step ahead. If everyone laughs at you, you're two steps ahead.

7. The answer to any problem "pre-exists." We need to ask the right question to reveal the answer. -Jonas Salk

8. When you ask a dumb question, you get a smart answer. -Aristotle

9. Never solve a problem from its original perspective.

10. Visualize your problem as solved before solving it.

11. All behavior consists of opposites...Learn to see things backward, inside out, and upside down. -Lao-tzu

12. Challenging an assumption can turn obstacles into opportunities.

13. If different shoes don't work, try looking at your problem from a helicopter...or a space ship.

14. Think like Nature. Ask "How would Nature solve this problem?" -Jonas Salk

15. Swipe from the best, then adapt. -Tom Peters

16. Make sure that the penalty for failure is not greater than the penalty for doing nothing.

17. Often it's the interesting part of an idea- not the positive or negative- that leads to innovation.

18. Writing down your ideas is like money in the bank.

19. Always start a sixty-minute meeting with a one- minute warm-up exercise.

20. Make friends with your shower. If inspired to sing, maybe the song has an idea in it for you. -A. Einstein

If you have some other rules of thumb for creativity, Send them to me  e-mail

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