I hear it all the time. "I want to expand my business, but I don't know how." Many online small business owners have this challenge. In all actuality, it's not a business problem... rather a creativity problem.
For any given industry, there are dozens of ways to expand, reach new customers, develop new products, and offer more services. However, the struggle comes with trying to think of new ideas. "Where do I expand to?" "How do I reach new customers?" "What products or services should I add?" These are all questions that can seem overwhelming to someone stuck sitting in front of a computer all day.
One way to open your mind to new possibilities is to get creative. When your creative juices start flowing, all sorts of ideas pop into your mind. Some may seem silly or inconceivable, but others will cause you to have "light bulb moments" where you're amazed that you didn't think of the idea before.
To break the monotony and open the floodgate of creativity, try doing some of the following. They are all "kid-like" activities designed to eliminate the humdrum business thinking you've become accustomed to and free your mind to unlimited possibilities.
1. Walk barefoot in the grass. When was the last time you took your shoes off and strolled around your yard? While you're walking, notice the birds in the trees, the crickets beneath your feet, and the shapes of the clouds overhead. Take time to just relax and dream again.
2. Buy a set of building blocks. Or you can borrow some from your children! Use your imagination to construct anything you want. Be unique... think like a kid and create a true masterpiece.
3. Forget about being wrong. Kids never care if they're wrong. If you tell them they can't do something, they simply say, "Oh yes I can!" Rather than looking at new business ideas from a "it'll probably fail" point-of-view, take the "oh yes I can" stance.
4. Rearrange your office or workspace. Sometimes just the slightest change in your routine can spark creativity. Change the placement of your desk, add some plants, hang an overhead light, or alter some other aspect of your workspace.
When you take the time to nurture your creativity, it will pay off in ways you never imagined. And isn't that the point? Learn to imagine the unimaginable and make your business soar!
Copyright 2004 Diane Hughes