This morning I took a long walk in the snowfall during which I came up with a few work-related ideas that I can’t wait to implement.

I find that some of my best ideas come when I have no distractions or pressure. Often they’re unpredictable.

These ideas range from article topics to social media posts to my next webinars, ideas for my clients to even big picture business ideas.

I always carry my phone with me so I can easily dictate or jot down thoughts about these ideas into my notes section.

My best ideas often come to me while walking my puppies, on my peloton, cooking, in the shower or drinking my morning coffee. Sometimes it’s even when I can’t sleep.

Making time to read inspires my creative side and helps me come up with new ideas. Whether it’s reading an industry blog, publication or even scrolling on Twitter, Instagram or LinkedIn. I often email myself articles and put them in folders to help me organize future ideas.

I’m not one of those people who can easily shut their brain off (I wish I could!). I welcome having time to actually think without being pressured to come up with a brilliant idea on the spot.

With all of the personal and professional commitments we have on any given day, it can seem impossible and stressful to find the time to just sit down (or walk or spin or bake) and just think.

As Stephen Covey says in The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, we often spend too much time on so-called urgent things in our lives – our emails, putting out fires and dealing with things that distract us – rather than focusing attention on what’s really important, like spending time with loved ones, and setting and accomplishing career goals.

To tap into your creativity and inspiration, find an environment – even if only for a few minutes – that fosters the development of those goals and helps you get back in touch with what’s really important.

Create an environment in which you have solitude, peace and a clear mind and jot down those ideas right away so you don’t forget them.

Even the most focused people don’t perform their best around unnecessary noise or distractions, so try to find a time and place that is quiet and peaceful, such as first thing in the morning or during your lunch break.

If it’s not possible to go somewhere on your own, maybe a bit of white noise is actually something that would help you, such as putting on your headphones.

Time is a luxury and needed to come up with great ideas in the 24/7 fast-paced world where people seem to want everything yesterday from us.

So how do you know where you’ll be the most effective in thinking during your alone time? Think about where you do your best thinking and make it a habit to go there or do that every day.

Work on turning your “me time” into a habit, and make it part of your regular routine.

Incorporating your downtime activities into your day means you’re more likely to actually have time for them.

Try prioritizing your downtime. Some people even put thinking time on their calendars, like a regular client appointment. There’s a much greater chance that you’ll follow through on your thinking time if you put it on your calendar. Treat it like you would any other appointment.

Harness the power of your inspiration and creativity on your own terms as much as you can.

Where do you feel the most inspired? And how do you make time for thinking when you are short pressed for time?

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