Artist’s block, creative wall – whatever you want to call it, we all hit it occasionally. Here are 5 helpful tips to overcome creative block!
So, what actually is creative block? It’s something that is down to interpretation, but many camps agree that it stems from the fear of failure or imperfection. In lots of cases, this kind of block can also be labelled as procrastination. Creators will have ideas bubbling away in their subconscious, but put off approaching them for a variety of reasons. Others believe a mental block is down to lack of inspiration and an inability to access one’s internal creativity. Whatever you chalk it up to, here are some pointers to beat creative block.
Stop Waiting for Inspiration
This may be the biggest stumbling block that creatives encounter. If the ideas well is running dry, the common action is to just wait until the stars align, lightning perfectly strikes and a once in a lifetime golden egg of an idea falls into your lap. Sadly, it ain’t going to happen. Although staying motivated during a pandemic is challenging, inspiration acts a lot like motivation. You have to act first, and the drive and energy will follow, setting you off on the right path. So, whatever your creative endeavour you are struggling with, just put pen to paper (or equivalent), lower your harsh expectation and make something – ANYTHING. You’ll soon find this gets the ball rolling.
Dreams to Reality
Have you ever written the most incredible song, inspired lyrics and technically impressive harmonies, but in your sleep? By the time you’ve got up and brushed your teeth it’s gone forever. This frustration is a total mood kill, but you can combat it. Keep a notepad and pen by your bed, so that you can write down these ethereal ideas as soon as you awake. Important to note – these subconscious wonders may get skewed in translation when set to paper, but you’ll have a decent framework at least.
A fun way to overcome creative block is to play around with different media and artistic activities. If you’re a writer struggling with an idea for a collection of short stories, why not try your hand at photography? Frustrated filmmaker? Try painting. Now, hear me out… By framing the creative process in a way that is unfamiliar to you, you will gain a different perspective. Also, by having a go at a new artistic activity, you will forgive yourself for not producing your Sistine Chapel. It’s important to have fun and not self-edit too much, as it reminds you why you love creating, which will stoke the fires of inspiration.
Overcome Creative Block with Sleep
“Sleep on it” is some sage advice that can applied to a plethora of situations. Creative endeavours are no exception. This is another exercise in avoiding your inner editor before you’ve let your inner creative loose. If you start working on an idea but hit a wall, just walk away and get a night’s rest. Any weird and wonderful thoughts that come to you in your slumber could bleed into your original idea, giving you a fresh burst of inspo the next day.
Sounds counterintuitive, doesn’t it? It’s easy to think that staying productive means constant hard work and 24/7 focus. However, overworking yourself can easily become counterproductive and can cause you to burn out. In music, the notes you don’t hear can be just as important as the ones you do. This also goes for working and creating – time spent resting and recharging is just as vital as focussed time working. Getting out for some fresh air is proven to aid mental health and can provide a much-needed change of pace, allowing you to come back to your project raring to go.
Check out Synchedin and the Collections page, to get yourself inspired and see what fellow creators are listening to! Whether you’re trying to plan a new vlog for YouTube, or searching for ideas for a Twitch stream, try starting with the music. Explore a huge library of awesome royalty free music, all available to stream in the background of videos for free!