How to battle creator block – tips to overcoming it

Creator block is real. As creatives, we all get to a point where we’re stuck, with no inspiration or ideas. It feels like we’ll never break free and our content creating days are over. However, this isn’t the case, there are ways you can battle the block.

Girl with head in her hands sat at a desk in front of her laptop with paper scrunched around her.

There are multiple ways you can overcome a creative block. It’s about finding the one that works best for you and your career. Whether you’re working full time on your art, or you’re trying to expand from a hobby to something more – we all experience the block at some point. It can feel like you’re stuck in it forever, and make you feel like you no longer enjoy your art.

However, once you’re back into the flow, you’re likely to rediscover your passion and love for the work you do. It will require pushing past the tricky part to see the benefits. Sometimes unfortunately you do just need to give it time. However, this can mean creating things your heart isn’t fully in until you bounce back. The best method to avoid this going on for too long is to try some or all of the following steps.

1. Explore

Get outside, and get yourself some fresh air. Being around nature gives a boost of serotonin which in turn boosts our mood and energy levels. Things seem clearer when you’re outside, and daunting things often don’t appear as bad when you’re surrounded by nature. It gives you a new lease of life, and could inspire you in different ways.

Whether you go for a walk, run, bike ride or just head out and sit somewhere alone with your thoughts – you’ll feel better for doing so. Why not make it part of your routine? Get out and about often, even if it’s for an hour or so each time. Short and often will do you the world of good. Who knows, you might spot something on your travels that sparks your imagination.

2. Try something new

Often we get stuck in a mundane routine and from there we become bored and uninspired. Sticking to the same things all the time is a definite way of dulling down our spark and potentially burning ourselves out. We need change, we need excitement or adventure. Without it, life just becomes a blur with no focus. Nothing will ever grow from boredom, well nothing of value at least.

When we expose ourselves to new surroundings and different situations we put ourselves into sink or swim mode. Whether we enjoy the new activity or not, we’re opening ourselves up to a new way of thinking or problem-solving. It allows us to have new thoughts and ideas. We’re in a new world and have new things going on around us. You don’t always need to go big. We’re not suggesting you skydive to find a new content idea. However, anything outside the box could be exactly what you need.

3. Connect with other creatives

Reach out to other creatives. Bounce ideas off each other. Take inspiration from their latest work (without plagiarising). Try and find out where their inspiration came from and how they got their work to the point it’s at now. Something as simple as having a conversation with another creative could be the boost you need.

Whether they’re within your field or not. Perhaps you could arrange a collaboration. Discuss ways they find inspiration when it’s lacking. You don’t have to speak to people only within your niche, expand your connections. Conversations spark ideas, and you might find you come away feeling a lot better about your situation. You might also be presented with various resources you’ve never explored and these could be the thing you’re missing.

4. Do an activity you love

As hard as it may be, try to take your mind off the situation. Stop stressing yourself out further about the creative block you’re having. Remind yourself it’s completely normal and allow yourself to take a step back. Enjoy taking part in a hobby outside your field. Perhaps spend time with some friends. When you’re involved in the creative arts, your whole life becomes consumed by it, even if you don’t intend for that to happen.

You’re constantly looking for new ideas everywhere you go. Try to immerse yourself in something that doesn’t involve working for a small amount of time. Fully let yourself be involved in an activity, the whole activity. You’ll find the less you think about your creative block, the easier it becomes. Otherwise, you’re just piling the pressure onto yourself with no escape. Give yourself and your mind and break.

5. Allow it to happen

Don’t try to fight it. It happens to every creative, and you’re not alone. Trying to fight it and force yourself to be inspired or create when you simply have no ideas isn’t going to help. The work you create won’t be up to your normal standard, and it may just leave you feeling worse. It’s a natural part of being creative. You’re not going to have a constant stream of ideas throughout your entire career.

Take a break and realise it’s normal. The more you force yourself, the harder it will become. So, just give yourself time to get back into the swing of things. You’ll become more stressed and the work you are creating will suffer. It’s likely you’ll take this stress into your normal life too. Becoming more irritable and little things will start to bother you.

6. Break things down

Making tasks more manageable might help you release the creative block. Often we have a huge task ahead of us and can’t seem to find the motivation to pull it apart. It seems bigger than it is and this can be overwhelming. When you get to this stage, every other task seems impossible too. You’re left in a situation where you avoid creating anything because you have one major task hanging over you that seems out of your reach.

Perhaps you can put off the large task for a few days, maybe even weeks, but eventually you will have to deal with it. Try and get ahead and make it less daunting. Break it down into smaller, manageable sections. Are there certain parts you can do one day, leave it and then come back to finish it at another point? Is there something less heavy you can do in between as a nice little break? Even if you just take multiple little breaks away from the project, it will help you out.

Whether it’s your career or a hobby, all creatives suffer from creator block from time to time. Some more than others. Follow these steps, and you might be able to get back on track before you know it!

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