Sometimes all you need is a spark of imagination to completely change your day. But the brain can’t always produce these without a little help, so it’s up to you to get those imaginative juices flowing. Here are four proven ways to stimulate your imagination during your daily routine.

1. AFTER YOU WAKE UP: MEDITATE

Meditating for 15 to 20 minutes when you first wake up can help clear your mind. Meditation helps calm the brain down and eliminates a lot of the noise we fill our heads with every day. Overthinking is the enemy of imagination.

2. USE YOUR COMMUTE TO YOUR ADVANTAGE

If you’re using public transportation, bring a sketch pad with you or download a doodling app and just let your imagination run wild. You don’t have to be Rembrandt, just draw what pops into your head. Research says doodling can reduce stress, stimulate the problem-solving center of your brain, and boost creative thoughts.

If you’re driving, plan a different route to work. A change of scenery, even a simple one, can help kickstart your imaginative side. And to ensure that your mind is allowed the peace it needs, try commuting to work without music or talk radio in the background.

3. READ DURING YOUR BREAKS

Take some time to focus on the pages of a good book to stimulate your imagination. Reading, especially fiction, is like a workout for your imagination. It encourages your brain to picture everything on the page, rather than having it all dictated to you on a screen.

4. PICK UP AN EXERCISE ROUTINE

A stimulated body leads to a stimulated mind. It’s something great artists have known for centuries, but it’s easily forgotten with today’s hectic schedules. Next time you can’t quite find the imaginative spark you need, try working up a sweat. It doesn’t matter if you squeeze exercise in before work, after work, or on the weekends, anything that challenges your body will reduce stress and stimulate the brain, allowing your imagination to flow.

At the Department of Imagination, we’re dedicated to giving you the opportunity to dream big and a chance to make it happen. Visit the Department of Imagination today and get your imagination working.