Invite a friend from out of town to boost your creativity

We had the visit of a dear friend over Easter. She came all the way from Dallas, Texas to tiny Luxembourg. Quite exotic for both of us.

I found that visit to be filled with lots of creative sparks.

So here is why you should invite a friend from out of town (or from across the big pond) to boost your creativity:

  1. They live in a different world, so they are bound to see the world differently. Allows you see new perspectives.
  2. You will visit some of the tourist sites you’ve never been to ‘because you live there and have all the time in the world’. Tourist attractions have a great potential for observing all sorts of phenomena.
  3. You talk about different topics than on a normal day: in my case we talked about encaustic waxing (in Dallas), art retreats, firing people, family and the skeletons they have in their closets, charities, finding your passion and making a living from it. All give you good exposure to new surfaces.
  4. You fall into another daily rhythm. The day will either move faster or slower depending on your visitor and the things you do. And change is good for creativity.
  5. Having a guest means you have to make a little effort to entertain, cook, make sure they are happy and comfortable. And effort is a way away from routine and that’s always a thumbs up for creative sparks.
  6. Whenever you drive somewhere, your guest will take pictures of things like fields. ‘What so special about our fields?’ you say. ‘We don’t have those kind at home.‘ your guest will say. And that makes you look at your fields (or trees, or cows, or shops, or kitchen utensils or any other common thing you would normally just pass) in a whole new way.
  7. You have more Time. You don’t do all the normal things, because you have a guest to entertain. Although I must admit that we did the food shopping and I did the lawn mowing – normal things for a weekend day for me. So maybe I’m just not a good host :-)
  8. You get to know your guest. As they are out of their normal habitat, you get so see their behavior as a guest. How helpful they are, how good they are with your kids. Plus, you get to behave differently too because a new person in the house always changes the dynamics. And change is good.

So who can you invite over for a weekend stay to boost your creativity?

Oh and Laura, we are definitely coming to squat your place in Dallas one day soon!

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