Art block. Writer’s block. Creative blocks. Everyone who has sat down to create something artistic or original has experienced this a hundred times. I’m experiencing it now, even as I write about how to get through the issue. Having any sort of a creative block can feel like the most frustrating experience in the world, but it is a mountain you are able to conquer, and here I shall give 8 of my most effective remedies to hopefully kick you out of that funk!
Where do they come from?
It can be almost impossible to determine exactly where each individual’s block has come from, as each one is a product of the context of the situation. In general, a creative block is the result of stress from many sources, mostly from being overtired or overworked, as well as you or your self-conscious becoming too critical about your own work.
Anxiety, anger and apathy can also all contribute to a creative block for many reasons, such as being unable to find any inspiration or wanting to have the reward of completing a project more than just wanting to complete the project. Whatever the cause, however, you should try these steps to get out of that mental ditch and back to creating some brilliant content!
1 – Just scribble
Whether you’re writing, drawing or sculpting, spending some time just jotting random ideas down or making random sketches is a great way to kickstart your brain into a creative space. Even if you’re just writing about your day or drawing a random object in front of you, this method can help ease your brain back into the idea of being creative by doing something which requires much less thought but still accesses your creativity in a small way.
2 – Take a nap
One of the worst things you can do to yourself during a creative block is to keep trying to force yourself to be creative. Taking a break from the desk can do absolute wonders for you in general, but having a short sleep can be a brilliant remedy and is much more effective than a smoke break. While you sleep, your body works on sorting through memories and anxieties and relaxes you from your brain to your toes.
During this process your subconscious mind takes over all functions of the brain, so when you wake up be sure to write down or draw everything and anything you have in your head as soon as possible. This semi-conscious rambling can be the key to success!
3 – Follow every idea through
A big contributor to creative blocks is self-critique. It is very common while in this state to follow an idea for a few seconds or minutes then decide that it is terrible and you erase it and are back to step 1. When this happens, try to remind yourself to follow the idea through!
If you don’t like the look of what you’re doing, allowing your brain to follow the idea through helps to keep you positive and receptive to inspiration, even if you end up deleting it all regardless.
4 – Don’t repeat history
There’s nothing better than original content and nothing worse than derivative content. If you have had great success in the past, trying to recreate what led to this success will never lead to the same brilliant eureka moment.
Much like your conscious brain, your unconscious mind doesn’t enjoy mindless repetition. Believe that your past successes were thanks to you and your brain and not a result of any specific process you followed.
5 – Try something else
Every part of the body and mind is susceptible to fatigue. Your nose can stop sensing a smell it is frequently exposed to, your muscles will tire and become useless from too much strain and parts of your brain can dull when overused without a break.
To this end, if you have been sitting down for hours trying to force some genius onto the page, take an extended break doing something else. Play some games, go out for a coffee or try a different creative pursuit for an hour. This will help to relax your brain and get the chemicals in there flowing, ready to apply to your main project.
6 – CBG
Various substances have been used by humanity to gain creative sparks for thousands of years. In the modern world, this process has been streamlines a stunning amount. While I won’t be mentioning any of the more hard-core creative substances, cannabis has been known to help with this process.
You could jump straight to farmers lab seeds and start up a supply of ganja, but modern science is far ahead of you there. Many unique cannabinoids have been identified and their primary functions determined and CBG, the main chemical in marijuana responsible for sparking creativity, is now available in its pure form to help creatives without knocking them out!
7 – Be ready for creativity throughout your day
Carry a notebook, have your camera at the ready and keep your brain on the lookout. Creativity doesn’t keep to a 9-5 schedule and can strike any time for any reason. Snapping a photo or taking a note or sketch of any sudden ideas throughout the day will make sure you have a lot to draw off when you need it most.
8 – Change your working environment
The brain doesn’t like monotony and a great way to kick past that is by changing your surroundings. This is what I find to be the most effective way of kickstarting the creative process. Moving your work space to a different room for a day or two, working out in a café or even simply reorganising your current work space can help massively.
With any luck, after following some or all of these tips you should be able to get yourself into some healthy, creative habits that allow your brain enough stimulation and freedom to get creative.