Feeling stuck creatively? How do you overcome the proverbial CREATIVE BLOCK that’s been haunting, harassing and hindering creatives for … *like* … EVERRRRR??
As writers, artists and designers, often times we find ourselves unable to work—just zombie-staring at a blank screen, white canvas or an empty desk. YES, it happens to all of us, right? (Or are you somehow immune???)… So we compiled these six simple tips on how to break those “BLOCKS” and refuel your creative juices!
1. WALK AWAY
Take a breather. Just walk away from your computer, your canvas, or your table. Stroll around your neighborhood if you must. Reconnect with mother nature. Seeing other places and people will inspire you along the way. Take your time—feeling pressured or in a hurry will not help you.
Walking away also means you may need to do some physical exercises. A number of studies show that exercising help boosts creativity as it releases good hormones like endorphins. So ride your dusty treadmill, go to the gym, run, or do yoga. B-R-E-A-T-H-E.
Regardless of how much you have on your plate, depriving yourself of a good night’s sleep is counterproductive. Get plenty of sleep. Previously, scientists thought that sleep merely rested the body to rejuvenate or recharge, but recent studies prove that sleep helps our brain connect unrelated ideas, which aids creative problem-solving in your waking hours.
So, if you are in the middle of your work and you suddenly hit a dead-end, you might just need a nap. According to one article in WebMD, research shows longer naps help boost memory and enhance creativity. Reset yourself.
3. TAKE A BATH
Fashion designer Tom Ford admits to taking a bath every hour every hour if he is particularly stressed.
And in her book, The Book of Sacred Baths: 52 Bathing Rituals to Revitalize Your Spirit, psychologist, Paulette Kouffman Sherman said that…
“Studies in floatation (a type of therapy that involves floating in a chamber filled with a saline solution) have shown increased creative scores for college students and the like during floatation, and many writers and artists attest to having more inspiration near water.”
4. CLEAN UP
Okay, this might not be for everyone, but it might be good for YOU. We understand that there’s a fine line between a creative clutter and a room full of garbage and dust. Look around your room and assess if you need to arrange those books or stack of papers.
5. NARROW DOWN YOUR OPTIONS
Now that you have rejuvenated yourself after exercising, sleeping, taking a bath, or tidying up your space, it’s time to think about your options on how to finish what you’ve started.
Don’t get lost inside the endless jungle of possibilities. Sometimes, having too many options are overwhelming. When you can no longer decide on which one to choose, creative block sets in. Setting parameters and narrowing down your options help you think clearly and creatively.
6. JUST JUMP IN ANYWAY
Guts and willpower—maybe they are just what you need to finish what you’ve started. Start slow and eventually, you will find your groove, phase, style, or idea that you want.
Or if you haven’t started anything, just doodle or scribble—whatever comes to mind, or splash some paint on your blank canvas to get the ball rolling. Because you never know, with those mindless doodles, what AWESOME ideas might arise. You can’t just keep on waiting for inspiration to strike. Chuck Close said, “All the best ideas come out of the process; they come out of the work itself. Things occur to you.”. Sometimes, the best way to start is just to START.
And lastly… like Obi-Wan Kenobi said to Anakin Skywalker, “MAY THE FORCE BE WITH YOU!“