You were born creative. Humans are, by nature, creative beings.

Maybe in third grade you thought your picture didn’t look as good as the “talented” girl’s. Maybe in the high school jazz combo you never got the hang of improvising a solo. Maybe in your office culture, offering an unusual suggestion is ridiculed. Maybe your job requires you to be creative every day, and after many years your well has run dry.

You can be more creative. Whether your creative flame is glowing, flickering, or has been doused with water long ago, it can be sparked anew.

I am trained as a visual artist and late in life became an amateur musician. I noticed while studying music that many of the principles are the same as those I learned as a graphic designer. Even some of the words are the same: contrast, texture, rhythm, emphasis. No great leap was required to realize that these basic design principles run through all forms of creative endeavors: architecture, landscaping, writing, business planning, carpentry, programming, interior decorating, and whatever it is you do all day. The source of these principles is nature itself.

The first step is to know that you were born to create. Remember the curious and playful child you used to be. You could imagine almost any possibility, from monsters in the closet to traveling through space and time. In that frame of mind, you are ready to create.