Oblique Strategies are a set of 100 cards with provocative statements, originally created by Brian Eno and Peter Schmidt in 1975, designed to aid music production & creative work. The cards are now in their fifth edition and you can order a set from Brian Eno’s site, or access them via an iOS app.
There’s a few different ways to use the cards, but my favourite is to draw one card when I’m feeling stuck, or unclear how to finish a project. The challenge is to simply trust what the card says, even if following the instruction seems odd or counterintuitive.
Some cards encourage you to back your instincts, some to think back on previous experience, or break down and rethink your project while a few frankly don’t totally make sense at all.
But, the point isn’t so much the wisdom of the cards themselves. They aren’t tips or advice, so much as spurs to action, phrases which help grease the cogs of creativity and help you create and finish original work.