Creative block. We are all stricken by this ailment, and while it’s miserable, it is only temporary.
There are so many ways to ignite your inspiration and get back into your creative work! As a student at Emerson College, I was launched into the world of writing creatively on a deadline. I had always followed a pattern of writing in bursts, when my inspiration naturally came to me. I thought this was the only way that inspiration worked. It was completely baffling to me how people could churn out work at a moment’s notice.
Now, I take charge of my inspiration. Creative block is very real and still happens to me, but I find ways to thwart these doldrums in my everyday life. You can, too!
Simple Ways to Beat the Block
1. Go for a Walk.
You read that right! Stepping away from your project is one of the healthiest and most productive things you can do for your creative work. As a graphic designer, I’ve had to take half-hour breaks once in a while to prevent myself from over-analyzing and over-complicating a piece. Sitting in front of your work and stewing stressfully over the details won’t get you anywhere! Step away from the desk, human! When you’re able to return to your project, I guarantee you’ll feel at least a little bit recharged, and you can look at your work with fresh eyes. Your brain and body will thank you.
Any Physical Activity Will Do!
Personally, yoga is a great way for me to reconnect with myself and get into a meditative state. Not only is it great for your physical and mental health, it is also a way to recharge those creative sparks! I especially love compiling my own practice with poses I really enjoy; it reignites creativity and helps me to focus.
2. Take a Power Nap, or Go to Bed for the Evening.
When I’ve had a lapse in writing inspiration, I will make a mental note of it in my head, turn out the lights, and turn off the wheels in my brain. Okay, it’s not that simple, but I will allow my thoughts to wander without judgment, and after 20 minutes or a full night’s rest, I am able to return to my work 90% of the time with a fresh idea. Setting the intention to create something after you rest gets your subconscious working, and your subconscious mind is a very powerful thing!
Following guided meditations has helped me to disconnect from my work for a little while and concentrate on my first priority: me. It helps me to return to my work with new perspectives and a well-rested mind.
In a class at WCSU solely dedicated to finding inspiration for writing, my professor began handing out sheets of paper to us, face down.
“Okay, everyone, today we have a very special activity… something unexpected, something you’d have never thought would bring you brilliant ideas.”
We flipped the pages over and… they were coloring pages. Mandalas. We all looked at each other like, Really? This is what we’re paying $30k a year for?
This activity was not only relaxing, it resulted in my writing three poems within two hours! Setting my intentions for creative thought without pressuring myself, I began coloring in the intricate mandala. Ideas began to work their way into my thoughts. Coloring has been hugely trendy as of late, and it really works wonders on stress levels and creative thinking.
4. Talk it Out.
As I’ve become more active on Twitter, I’ve found subjects for my writing by interacting with my followers. This post was even inspired by a blogger who felt that she couldn’t find inspiration for her writing! (Thanks, Anne’s Perks ^-^) Learning more about what your audience wants to see–whether you’re a designer, writer, or any sort of creative–is key in getting your work seen, and having it be valued. Staying in touch with the world around you is like having a live feed of creative ideas flowing 24/7! Pay attention, soak it all in, and you’re guaranteed to be inspired.
What inspires YOU, and how do you go about creating your own inspiration? I’d love to know! Comment below!