Ever get frustrated when you want to create something new, but feel stuck? Well, if you have, one of the oldest, most trusted creativity exercises just may be the solution you’re searching for. However, don’t let the word “oldest” throw you off. The fact that this process is “old” ought to let you know it’s worth trying.
In fact, recently, when I received my weekly email from the FoodNetwork, I was greeted by this link line, “Take Burgers from Simple to Sublime.” Intrigued, I clicked on the link (http://www.foodnetwork.com/food/rc_burgers) and was greeted by a picture of a gorgeous burger. Halfway down the page I read the following words, “Mix-ins, Fix-ins & More. Think of your burger as a blank canvas. First, pick your patty and then, let the fun begin. Create a masterpiece using different fillings, condiments and breads.”
Following that four-fold arrangement, the next section of that page was arranged into four quadrants with a listing of ingredients under each of those titles (Mix-ins, Fix-ins, Breads and Condiments). Then all anyone needs to do if they want to create a new and different burger is to pick and choose items from each of the four sections in order to come up with a new burger (or at least a new one for them).
For example, I might choose to use ground turkey as the burger, then add in my MIX-INS (let’s say caramelized onions, sun-dried tomatoes, fresh cilantro, carrots, red peppers and herbs d’Provence). After cooking the burger, I might choose to put the burger on focaccia BREAD, along with the FIX-INS of provolone cheese, lettuce, tomato and pancetta, and then add the CONDIMENTS of basil pesto and hot peppers in order to create a great Italian burger. Of course, if I wasn’t looking at this list of component parts, chances are, I never would have come up with this burger.
Using that same kind of process, you can do this with anything you’re working on to make it more remarkable. Create a list of major categories and then create a list of options under each of those major areas. After that, just mix and match items until you come up with something new and different. Don’t worry about evaluating your ideas yet. At this point, you’re just trying to get the ideas flowing! So go ahead and mix and match your way toward remarkability!