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My Top Tips for Getting Over A Creative Block

I'm no stranger to a creative block. They creep up on me and suddenly my mind is one big blank. It happened this morning in fact, just after I'd sat down at my computer for my 'content' day (a day I set aside for writing content for my blog and newsletters). Instead of starting to write, I made a timetable for the next 2 months, which only helped to set my thoughts in order and not much more than that. Then, instead of writing after that (something I promised myself I'd do), I watched the rest of an episode of Queer Eye on Netflix. Obviously such a helpful thing to do. In the end, I realised that I was procrastinating, and that in doing so I was avoiding the things I thought I couldn't do. There was only one thing to do, which takes me on to tip number 1:


1. Go for a walk


A block can hit you at any moment, and they're especially painful when you've sat down full of energy, ready to go, and then it goes BAM! When I realised that had happened this morning, I shook myself off, gave up staring at my computer screen and went for a walk. An hour later, I was back at my house looking at 17 ideas for blogs, which I've been working on ever since. Which leads me to my next point . . .


2. Just start something


There's a little bit in your mind that always wants to hold you back, it tells you that you can't, so instead you get paralysed. The way out of it? Just start something! Anything, just start it! By starting to write one of my blog post ideas I had after going for a walk this morning, I've had ideas for another three posts. Two of the blog posts I've already written have given rise to more top tips about the same topic. Creativity births creativity. The more you do, the more it fires the connections in your brain that you need in order to have more ideas.


3. Have a break


This does not apply to every situation, sometimes you need a break, and sometimes you're just procrastinating. You have to recognise which it is in yourself. For me, I know I'm procrastinating when I have a little guilty voice in the back of my head that makes me feel awful, I know I need a break when I'm losing concentration, or when I'm making lots of mistakes - and when that happens I forgive myself and put my feet up. You are going to work better if you are rested. End of.


4. Take a look at other creatives' work


Firstly, a caveat: Do not do this if your confidence is low, you'll just end up hating yourself, but if you're feeling good and all you need is a kick up the butt, then by all means, go ahead. You can get a lot of inspiration from the work of others. Identify what it is you like about their work and then take an element of that and carry it into your own work. To be clear, I'm not talking about plagiarism here - it is so not okay to straight up copy what someone else is doing - but finding inspiration in other creatives' work is highly recommended.



5. Let it sit.


This works if you're stuck on something and that's what's causing the block. Sometimes, I've been doing one of my multi animal pieces, and I just can't find the animal that I want to go in one of the gaps, so I end up staring at the gap for half an hour, flicking through books, researching animals that are a certain colour. Not good. The best thing to do in this situation is set it aside and let it sit for the afternoon, or for the night, whatever. Do something else, something that's easier, or something you know you can do right now. This then might kick off another idea, or perhaps nothing will come to you for another day or two, but have the confidence in yourself to know that you will find the answer.


Have you ever faced down creative's block? Do you have any tips to share? I'd love to hear them in the comments below!


Thanks for reading :)


Nx

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