10 Helpful Resources to Spark Your Creativity
Note: This popular post has been updated for 2020. Happy creating!
In public speaking or business presentations, passive is passé — but it can be tough to break out of a creative rut and find just the right phrase or hook to keep your audience engaged. I should know. I present before audiences hundreds of times a year. Fresh content can be a challenge! That’s why I’m always looking for new helpful resources that will help get the creative juices flowing. Recently, these have been my go-to sites for extra inspiration and fun.
One Look: This is a one-stop shop for just about any word you can think of. Type in “bluebird,” for example, and you’ll get a list of definitions from 29 sources, plus a list of what the word means in various industries, professions, and casual situations (tech, medicine — even slang). You’ll also get synonyms, rhyming words, usage examples, and more.
The Noun Project
The Noun Project: I think this website is so much fun! Type in any word and The Noun Project will match your word with an icon. I like to use them for PowerPoint presentations — much more useful and unexpected than standard clip art.
SlideBean: SlideBean is a godsend if you struggle to create professional presentations — and it’s a wonderfully intuitive alternative to struggling through PowerPoint. Choose a professionally designed template, create your slide deck, and then share it with your team. You can even ask one of SlideBean’s designers for feedback and assistance or to revamp an existing slide deck. The first presentation is free, but the pricing is reasonable after that.
SketchBubble: This site is in the same vein as SlideBean but offers an astounding 150,000 templates. It’s also great if you don’t love PowerPoint and instead choose to work in Apple Keynote or Google Slides — you’ll find templates designed specifically for those platforms. Plus, SketchBubble has a new Diagram Finder that makes it easy to plot your words to visuals.
Rhymer.com: Rhymes are great for developing memorable turns of phrase. Rhymer.com offers ideas for any type of rhyme you might need: end rhymes like blue/shoe, last-syllable rhymes like timber/harbor, double rhymes like conviction/prediction, and more.
Trainers Warehouse: Even professional trainers can find it difficult to create tools and icebreakers that are fun and meaningful. This terrific resource solves that problem with thousands of games, awards, toys, and other teamwork- and recognition-building supplies.
1,000 Best Clean Jokes from Reader’s Digest: This site is a great resource to stimulate humorous thinking, even if you’re not looking to add jokes to your speeches and presentations. You’ll discover riddles, one-liners, and many more.
Unsplash: If you’re tired of standard stock photos, Unsplash is the site for you. You’ll find thousands upon thousands of artistic stock photos, ranging from topics such as current events to travel to film and beyond. Each week, Unsplash provides curated collections of timely stock photos so you don’t have to spend hours searching. And the best part? It’s all free. (Of course, it’s good etiquette to give the photographer a credit.)
Canva: Canva has amassed a near-perfect rating in app stores because it is one of the simplest, easiest ways to create beautiful designs. You can create just about anything — including business cards, presentations, flyers, and more — by using Canva’s simple click-and-drop design feature. It’s especially useful for creating eye-catching social media posts and is definitely one of my most helpful resources.
What are your favorite resources for spurring creativity? Let me know in the comments below.