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Andrew Baisden
Andrew Baisden

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20 activities that increase my creativity as a developer

Having a creative mind is essential if you want to be a successful developer or a designer. Without creativity you will struggle to come up with project ideas. I have put together a list of 20 activities that help me come up with ideas for projects and inspiration. Some might be considered a distraction however you can get an idea at any moment. Visual and audio feedback is highly energising as it makes you think more. What activities do you think are great for creativity?

1. Watching Movies

It is damn near impossible to not experience some sort of creativity when watching a movie. If you are a huge fan of super hero movies like Marvel and DC then you will understand what I am talking about. Nonetheless you can feel inspired by anything you watch from a drama to a romance novel. For example lets use Iron Man as a reference. The colour tones for his suits would make for a cool website colour theme. And the cool interfaces he uses could be incorporated into an app of some sort.

2. Watching Series

Just like movies, series are designed to make you think because there is usually a compelling story to follow. I finished watching The Queens Gambit a few weeks ago and it is inspiring me to learn the game chess or to even create a game like it. Or you could take the series Stranger Things as another example. The typography that they use for the intro with its 80's style has been copied and used by people in designs already.

3. Watching Anime

This topic needs to introduction the whole genre is literally about having cool designs, animations and illustrations. I like the art style in many different anime's there are too many to list here. I will just give a shout out to Demon Slayer, Jujutsu Kaisen and Attack on Titan for being so good!

4. Listening to audio books

Books are one of the best mediums when it comes to getting inspired and engrossed. In this case with audio books you can't see anything so you have to picture what is going on. That has to be a great way at coming up with some interesting thoughts. Oh and if it happens to be a book related to programming then there is even more reason to learn.

5. Drawing Manga

Just like manga this medium inspires creativity. And not just drawing manga but also reading the manga comics as well. Because they are still pictures with no animation you are forced to imagine what they would look like in motion.

6. Going for a walk

This has got to be one of the best ways for stimulating your creativity. Just going outside and breathing some fresh air it is very empowering. Being one with nature and enjoying the atmosphere and architecture as you walk around.

7. Exercising

When you work out it gets the blood flowing. Another added bonus is that its great for stress relief and getting into shape. When your mind is more calm you have clarity and ideas start to flow right in.

8. Eating food

Eating good food lifts your mood and when you are feeling good its much easier to think clearly. On some many occasions I have come up with great ideas while I was eating fortunately I had a notepad nearby to write them down.

9. Listening to podcasts

I just happen to listen to developer podcasts among a few others so this is a hobby that is always going to provide me with ideas. When you are getting sound advice in most cases the absorption is going to be quite high.

10. Listening to music

I am the type of developer who listens to music while they code so I find this to be a highly effective why for coming up with ideas and solutions to problems. In fact I wrote this article while listening to music that's how dedicated I am to it. 😁

11. Watching YouTube

Theres a reason why YouTube is one of the most uses social networks and why people spend hours on there. It is not only a form of entertainment but its a great place to discover new things and get inspired.

12. Playing computer games

Anything that requires you to be interactive and think is going to be good for coming up with creativity. The more you play the more thinking that you are required to do. It does not even have to be a computer game it could be a game like chess or sudoku.

13. Sleeping

When you go to sleep your brain gets a chance to recharge and detoxify your body. You can get ideas in dreams very easily and sometimes even the solution to a coding problem.

14. Social media

Social media is all about interacting with people and discovering new things. I am highly active on Twitter so every day I am learning something new and meeting new people. Many developers like to post CSS art that they created. That alone is enough to inspire even the most skeptic person that they can make something.

15. Meditation

When your mind is calm you can focus on what really matters. I find that it is such an amazing way to clear out all of the toxic thoughts and just concentrate on what really matters.

16. Browsing the internet

There is an unlimited amount of knowledge on the internet finding something that stimulates your imagination is only a few clicks away. I have come up with so much inspiration just by randomly stumbling upon in while I was surfing the internet.

17. Writing code

Whether you are writing good code or bad code you are always going to think of a better way of doing something. Seeing poorly written code is a pretty good justification for doing a refactor.

18. Doing design work

Anything design related is going to get you thinking there is no debate about this. It does not matter if you are the one doing the design or if you are looking at someone else's work. You are going to be inspired.

19. Messaging Apps

If you are ever stuck for ideas why not talk to someone else. When you have more than one brain working the chances of one of you coming up with a great idea is significantly magnified.

20. Taking a shower

When you have a shower it really stimulates you're thinking. I am sure almost everyone has come up with some cool ideas for something while they were taking a shower.

Final Thoughts

I really hope that you enjoyed reading this article and learned something from it. As a content creator and technical writer I am passionate about sharing my knowledge and helping other people reach their goals. Let's connect across social media you can find all of my social media profiles and blogs on linktree.

Peace ✌️

Top comments (2)

softwaredvlpr_ profile image
software Devlpr

Loved this :).
For me? Watching YouTube, drawing and browsing on Pinterest increases my creativity, oh and watching cool tech-ish series'.

andrewbaisden profile image
Andrew Baisden

Totally agree. Pinterest is great for coming up with ideas as well. I have used it for getting capsule wardrobe ideas.