You knew this would have some connection to photography, right? But perhaps you were wondering how ridiculously tenuous and strained it might be. Well, I mean it quite seriously, though not for dealing with put-downs or contests of cleverness. I've written that a principal reason I pursue photography with passion is that it helps me to teach myself to see - to see new things, and perceive in a new way the things that have always surrounded me. Sometimes the camera can still surprise me. I will spot things when perusing a photo on the computer screen, things that I did not notice when doing the shooting, or that I simply did not see in the same way. It can be easier to think of a new approach to a subject when you no longer have the subject available to you.
So here's my take away: I try to remember, whenever I see something that I think might make a good photograph (assuming that I have time and a camera), that I most likely will never see the same thing again. Therefore, any good ideas for how to treat the scene, where to plant my view, how to compose the image, and so forth, have to happen while I'm there. The trick is to make them happen, and sometimes I use an auto-posterior impulse. That is, I give myself a kick in the rear by imagining that I've packed up my equipment and am partway home. Hmm, what did I not have the imagination to do with the camera that now jumps out at me?
Maybe this constitutes an "inner game of photography". At any rate, it sometimes keeps me going. If it results in more photos to edit and more to discard, at least it's just zeros and ones, there's no film wasted.
So, shoot thoughtfully, pause to ponder what you're doing, but don't hesitate to experiment. Shoot those things that just tickle the edge of your interest. They may turn out to be boring, but one of them may strike you as having real potential when you're carrying your gear down the stairs (or the mountain trail), or viewing the files on your computer.
Oh, and sometimes it's good to return to a photo after a year or more without seeing it. You may come up with ways to improve it.