How do you overcome creative blockages? It is a simple question that we always deal with as creatives. When we think we have found the answer to overcome a current rut, a new challenge arises. We all feel stuck – freshly graduated, creative people at the beginning of their practice, middle-career practitioners and experienced professionals.
Although I help creative professionals get stuck a lot through my work as a career coach, I decided to use the Internet to get help answering this question: How do you overcome creative blockages? In particular, I asked my Instagram followers, who generously gave practical tips on how to help them progress, how to prevent getting stuck, and questions about further exploration when creative blockages occur.
Preventively write down your creative tasks.
Benjamin Welch (@benjaminwelch) shared a new approach that he tried and that he has found helpful so far. “I write down my creative tasks, but I do this the evening before and not the day or shortly before my start. Then my only decision is to check the list and do something about it. That way I don’t rely on my mood or inspiration to give myself ideas and I don’t have to feel pressure to find anything on site. “Instead, he looks at his list, selects something and starts.
The idea that you shouldn’t wait for inspiration came from Kara Gordon (@ Kayessgordon) who said, “I try to remember not to wait for inspiration to make art. Not every brand or job has to be valuable. It’s about the process. “
Shake up your routine.
Several people support the philosophy that change can literally be effective by taking a break and further developing your creativity, but perhaps in a different way. Kara Gordon said that letting go of her routine can also help her move forward, whether that means taking another route to work, going to a museum, or meeting a friend she hasn’t seen in a while . “When you see and experience something new, you can shake up the patterns in your brain.”
Michaela Fiasova (@ Michaelafiosova) often works on more than one project at a time so that she can switch between them, and when she’s at a standstill she sometimes watches YouTube videos about something that has nothing to do with her project. Indhira Rojas (@redindhi) also follows this approach and switches to a completely different task or activity to clear the mind, even if it is a pastime, “in the hope that a new insight will emerge that will trigger a new wave of creativity.” For Danielle Evans (@ Marmalade blue), the ultimate goal is to have some kind of output to build momentum: “I exchange disciplines. Sometimes output is output and that’s all that matters. ”
Reconnect with your physical self.
One of the most suggested tactics to overcome creative blockages was doing something physical, be it as simple as a brisk walk outside, as suggested by Nicole Jacek (@nicolejacek) or just as involved as a long bath like Anne Ditmeyer Stark (@pretavoyager) does: “The pool is one of the places where my best ideas come. They flow. It feels counterproductive when the job is done, but the key is separated from the computer and screens. ”
Karoleen Decastro (@ Karoleend) likes to go one step further and said, “Mindful walks do wonders.” She could challenge herself to count ten blue things, nine red things, eight green things, etc., until she feels grounded and open to her inner world. [Ed. Note: This approach sounds familiar.]
Regardless of how you get into your body from your head, a physical change can help change your perspective as Lys Hunter (@lyshunter) remarked: “Sometimes you have to go – leave the office, leave the house. Take a walk and try to think about a big world problem. Get out of your little problem. “
Stop annoying the ruts.
Wix VP by Design Hagit Kaufman (@ Hagitkaufman) has decided to change their view of a rut. Instead, she sees it as an opportunity: “I used to hate it. Nowadays I’m less angry because I now know that it always brings me to something or something new. A new idea, a new way of thinking or something simpler, like putting two old things together in a new way. ”
Payal Vaidya (@ Payalcv) sees creative blockade as an opportunity instead of annoying it. She asks how she can look at it from a different perspective or even try on different people who could solve the problem from a new perspective: “How could Paula Scher do this or what would Debbie Millman ask?”
Commit to work through the block.
While instinct might be to take a break and do something else, some people said that they may find it helpful to stay in position and work through their block. Kate Aldridge (@ k8.aldridge) delves into the part of the project that she likes least or is least creative, so it’s more about production than pressure to connect with her creativity. “I do the part I like the least, like editing, so I can still have my hands on it to make it without the pressure to be creative.”
For Kriz Bell (@krizbell) is about getting the less exciting first draft of a project out of the way. “I start digging and put the train with stick taste out of the way. And when I’m really empty, I just go and investigate who, what, where, when, how. If you continue, you will end up somewhere else. ”
Identify the source of your block.
Sometimes when we experience creative blockages, it’s really about the project. As Karoleen Decastro It can sometimes be due to fear or boredom at work. If it can identify the source, it can specify how it should be addressed. Devin Kate Popes (@devinkatepope) The Council builds on this approach and asks us to take into account that work may not be work at all. She suggested using the HALT method. “Am I hungry, angry, lonely, tired?” If so, speak to it and try again.
Ultimately, we will have many opportunities in the course of our careers to deal with creative blockages. If we assume that this goes without saying, we can accept that nothing is wrong with us – we are not broken or inadequate. We just have a normal experience. Adjusting our expectations as Indhira Rojas can be critical Especially when our creative block does not dissolve overnight, he said: “If the creative block is long, I let go of the expectations of the project, take a break, relax and try to gain perspective.”
Would you like to learn more about overcoming creative blockages? Read “How To Overcome Creative Obstacles” by Mia Pinjuh.
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