I've always seen my creative energy as having a "fuel gauge". When it runs low, it's hard to get the meter back up. So what can we do to get those creative sparks flying again? Here are 10 simple ways to motive and inspire yourself when stuck in a creative block:
1. "Do what you love, love what you do". Surround yourself with the things and people you love.
It may sound simple, but realizing what you truly want to surround yourself with can effect what you plan on doing. Ask yourself: "what do I actually love doing, eating, spending time on? what are my favorite colors? what art do I like looking at? what movies and shows do I like watching?". When you start to list your interests, you may see some patterns, connections, and focuses. If something isn't on your list of "loves", why would you plan a goal or project in that area?
2. Take a break and clear the mind... rest, go for a walk, meditate...
Enjoyment, happiness, and positive moods can set the mood for higher energy and the drive to do things, while stress and anxiety can hinder this momentum. Before starting any project, make sure your mood and mind are in the right state.
3. Go on an art tour at a museum, or online through pinterest, social media, etc.
There is a world of ideas out there waiting to be experienced. Take some time to absorb the world and be inspired by others.
4. Compare with admiration, not jealousy.
The previous point on finding inspiration in others can be very helpful, but if you start to get jealous or angry, this may take a turn for the worst. Comparing your life to another's can be so inspirational when we can think, "I would love to be like so-and-so, what did they do to get where they are?". This can help us to take the right introspection and set the right goals. This is far different than asking, "Oh look at so-and-so, they are amazing and I'm not, and I'm upset about it". It may sound harsh, but complaining about your situation but doing nothing about it is not productive.
5. Create and clean your space for a fresh start.
Sometimes what we feel on the outside can effect what we feel on the inside, and vice versa. If our space is cluttered, messy, and dirty, how can we expect our minds to feel differently? Clear the clutter and make space for your new ideas.
6. Take action! Just start something, anything.
Sitting and stewing can increase boredom and procrastination. What's the opposite of procrastination? Productivity! Once you start something, your energy and mood gets a burst in the right direction. So... Grab a notebook and start writing thoughts, put on fitness gear and go for a run, throw some paint on a canvas, open the first page of that book... whatever it is... just do it!
7. Watch motivational videos/speeches.
Much like number 3, gathering inspiration from others can be very inspiring. The difference with this tip is the emotional push involved with motivational speakers. Motivation is the the drive or reason we have for doing things. If this drive is not there, finishing anything can be difficult. There are some great motivational speakers out there that can help you find yours, try searching youtube or Ted talks.
8. Buy or find some new supplies that you are excited to use.
Getting creative with a new process, new materials or mediums can be a fun, experimental way of finding new ideas and inspirations. For example, if you are used to working with clay, try drawing a picture, taking some photographs, or writing a song... it is like looking at things from a new perspective!
9. Be courageous in front of the blank canvas by filling it, there is no wrong answer.
Sometimes, when starting something new, there can definitely be a fear of messing up or not being good enough. Push aside thoughts of self doubt and replace them with positive affirmations.
10. Most important... Have fun, play, dance, sing, laugh!
Through all the hard work, don't forget number 1 - the reason behind this process is to do what you love. It's easy to get tunnel vision and focus in on the project at hand. Take some time to step back and have fun with it.
Hope these help get you started!
We'd love to know, what do YOU do when you're stuck in a rut?
xoxo - J+E